Halifax, N S
18 August 2009 | Royal Nova Scotia Yacht Squadron
Bob, Beeeuuutiful, August is the Month for the Maritimes
The Royal Nova Scotia Yacht Squadron; can you imagine how much of a mouthful that is to say over a VHF radio? And I would say it twice followed by "This is Lucky Bird, Lucky Bird on channel 68 over". Try it. Well unfortunately they never responded so we rolled the dice, headed into Halifax Harbor around 20:30 hoping we could find a place to spend a couple of days. This is the termination point of the Marblehead-Halifax Yacht race which I now understand is just a little longer than the Chicago Mac; longer and far more challenging.
Nova Scotia runs west/east from Halifax to Canso and the winds decided it was a good time to go west. Here's the pattern: Leave a harbor, say Canso early, 06:00. Absolutely no wind. The Atlantic is flat. So we power for a couple of hours until we see ripples, then it starts building so up go the sails and off we go, slow at the start and then around noon we are flying. Because the wind is west and we are heading west we have to tack out and back in, out and back in, out and back in. I forget how many times we did that cycle. In hindsight maybe we should have go out, out, out for thirty or so miles and then tacked back. A lesson learned for the next leg of the trip, Halifax south. From here the land bends a little more to the south and the forecast is for SW 15 to 20, so again on our nose and there is hurricane Bill which has caught our attention and will impact our decisions for the next several days.
Yesterday we were beating west and came upon five sail boats heading east. They were sailing dead downwind and for the sailors reading this you know what that means, you either reach, jibe, reach or go wing-on-wing or as these boats, jib only. They were lazily sailing along enjoying the fine weather while we were hard on the wind, water over the bow, reefed and working our way west. No power boats at all; just us rag-baggers out there enjoying the ride.
One item of possible interest is Alice's fish story. We were sailing along, or should I say Vivaldi, the new name of our self steering device, was steering us along and Alice let out a holler. It was too fast for me to see but she saw a very large tuna jump out of the water. A huge fish, a really big fat fish and that's Alice's accounting. I believe her and wished I could have seen it as well. So far I've just seen seals, porpoise and a couple of bolugas.
We discovered a small leak at the bow of the boat where the drain for the windlass well joins a tube that runs to the bow to allow water to exit. Every time our bow sunk into a wave, water rushed up this tube and to our surprise some of it found its way into the boat. Darn!!! I wanted to have only dust in our bilge. So Alice and I have been fiberglassing around the connection and will finally have a completely dry boat. Now, all you sailors out there, how many of you can honestly say your boat has dust in the bilge??
Now it's time for dinner at the Royal Nova Scotia Yacht Squadron, that's even hard to type.