Back home again
31 July 2009 | Catawba Island
Most everyone knows that we're back home. We had an uneventful trip down the St Clair river, moving along with an average 2 kt. downstream current - warm temps, blue skies and little traffic.
Once we hit Lake St Clair, the wind picked up a little (not enough to sail) but the lake remained relatively smooth. We were staying at Lakeview Marina and because they have a small fuel dock, we ended up circling outside by Peche Island for about 20 min. waiting for a spot to open up. Once docked on the short wall directly across from the fuel dock, I was amused by a couple of boaters on a Go Fast boat with a long improvised fishing net - apparently looking for a fuel cap in the 'drink'. Hmmm does this happen often? ;-)
Time to split up: next morning Adagio and Resolution left at six and headed to Put-In-Bay. Since we wanted to be home in time for Kat to attend a shower, we decided to head for home at CIC. So we slept in until 6:30 - but by 6:50 lines were cast off and we picked up the Detroit River current - about 1 - 1.5kt avg. Conditions were the same as the day before, blue skies, calm water and mild temps.
We did see a bit more traffic, but most, not all, of the AIS alerts were from ships that were stationary. The one that wasn't is a 1000' ft. ore carrier called the John Barker. For a while it looked like she was going to pass us by Fighting Island, no such luck. Just as we entered the Livingston Channel, we look back and saw it turning by the mid channel mark. Kat was elated because her shift at the helm was ending and she wouldn't have to deal with it. As it entered this part of the downstream channel it literally looked like there was minimal room on either side (AIS data showed her to be 113 ft wide). So as I took over the helm, I was looking for potential 'escape routes' and the one to Belle Isle made the most sense. Luckily for us, the Barker's speed closely matched ours - she was doing 10.9 kt's compared to our 10.5. We were out of the channel and into the lake by #34 red can before she passed us.
Lake Erie, was relatively calm as well, with a northwest wind, we tried sailing, but the waves and minimal wind created an effective way to flog the main - so down it went. One benefit of the wind was that it did create some wave action that helped us along by about .5 kt. As we entered CIC we were greeted at the fuel dock by our friends the McLaughlins.
Great to be home!