04 October 2010 | Stonington, Conn
Cloudy with flood warnings, Wind N-E@25-30, gusts to 40, Temp 65F, Water Temp 64F
Etchells rounding the windward mark in the US Nationals, Newport RI
From Opti prams to Maxi racers, from lovingly maintained antique yachts to state of the art racers, you can see it all in Newport!
We left East Greenwich on Saturday, sailing down Narragansett Bay in light northerlies, but bundled up against the cool weather. Just above Newport we came across the Etchells 22 US Nationals. Since we used to race Etchells, we stopped and watched the action for a while. Then continuing our sail, we met another race of about 50 boats of all sizes and types racing north in the bay.
Back in Newport, we found the streets crowded with people from two cruise ships and a good crowd of regular tourists. We did some more grocery shopping, hoping to be able to take advantage of some easterly winds to get up the sound and through New York Harbor from where we'll be able to head down the New Jersey coast. Dinner was Vongole, a clam dish with linguini pasta.
Yesterday (Sunday) we headed out in fresh N-E winds heading west. To clear Point Judith we had 8 miles of dead downwind with a 5' swell on the beam making it a rolly trip. But once clear of Point Judith, we had a broad reach in the freshening (25-30) winds that sent us racing westward. With only a couple of other sails visible, we ran through Watch Hill Passage and out of the swell. Although only early afternoon, we decided to head in to Stonington, as the next good anchorage was just a bit too far for the afternoon, and we wanted good protection from the N-E as the forecast is for the winds to build with gusts to 40 knots overnight.
And the forecast was correct. Today dawned cloudy with the winds howling, so we're here for the day. Its forecast to go down overnight, giving us one more day of downwind sailing, so tomorrow will be an early start to take as much advantage as possible before the winds shift west.
We won't make NYC, but we can come close, leaving a S-W sail in the lighter N-W winds forecast for Wednesday.
As for today, we are only 2 miles from Mystic, so we'll try to get over there.