Madcap Sailing

31 December 2018 | Gold River Marina, Nova Scotia, Canada
06 August 2018 | Mahone Bay, Nova Scotia
26 May 2018 | Gold River Marina, Gold River, NS
18 May 2018 | Gold River Marina, Gold River, NS
24 March 2018 | boat in Gold River, NS and crew in Halifax
22 May 2017 | Whittaker Creek, Oriental, NC
15 May 2017 | Boat in Oriental, crew in New Orleans and Nova Scotia
26 April 2017 | Oriental, NC
26 April 2017 | Oriental, NC
20 April 2017 | Ocean Isle Marina, Ocean Beach, NC at Mile 335.6
17 April 2017 | Dewees Creek, near Charleston, NC
14 April 2017 | St Simons Island
12 April 2017 | Fernandina Beach, FL
11 April 2017 | St Augustine, FL
07 April 2017 | Vero Beach, Florida
03 April 2017 | Ft Pierce, FL
30 March 2017 | Ft Pierce, Florida

The Truth, the Whole Truth, and Nothing but the Truth?

12 April 2017 | Fernandina Beach, FL
Beth / high 20's - feels cooler on the water
I like to tell the happy stories, and occasionally the not so happy ones that are part of our sailing adventures. Some stories are better kept private - little ones that aren't useful to anyone reading for entertainment or for cruising information. We would prefer to keep the awkward/embarassing ones to ourselves, but I try to write a truthful blog, and so ... I will tell you the story of how we missed dinner with our friends on Wednesday evening.

We had a pleasant early morning departure from St Augustine and got a nice lift from the current on our way up the ICW. We enjoyed looking at the properties along the edges, the marshes, the pelicans. The going was easy. Until we passed Red 44 and Green 43 in the South Amelia River. We were in the channel, but the depths started dropping. I zigzagged a little to starboard and a little to port seeking deeper water and finding no real difference. As I zigged back to starboard, we slugged to a stop in the mud. The current twisted us around to face south. I reved the engine in reverse and forward. We put out a sail to see if the tipped keel would give enough room to float off. (In this case, it just pushed us farther onto the shoal.) Nothing worked. I howled; I cried; I pounded my fists. Jim sighed and called Tow Boat US.

Hearing that we were grounded just south of Red 42, Joe said, "Oh yeah, I know right where you are. That shoal on the western edge has been growing out over the last few years". He zoomed into sight within half an hour and made one try to pull us off, but he said he knew that this close to low tide, we were too far onto the shoal for it to work. So what happened next? We sat and waited. And tipped. And waited - for 2 hours to low tide, and then 2 hours as the tide rose and we straightened up again, and then an other 45 minutes as Joe tugged gently this way and that until we came loose about 6:50 pm. He gave us a heads up about some other skinny water areas between here and the mooring field at Fernandina Beach (notably at Green 1 - stick really close to it) and we considered calling it a night and anchoring just up the way, but we decided to follow his wake and do the trip on the rising tide, hoping to cover the next 10 miles before dark.

It felt like we were in a time warp when the big black Nina and Pinta came along just as we were coming free. These reproductions of Christopher Columbus' ships ( were in Vero Beach last week, and were on their way to St Mary's, Georgia. We made an interesting parade - the tow boat way out in front, followed by Madcap powering along just as fast as we could go, with the tall ships bringing up the rear.

In the dusky light, we were delighted to see that there was still an empty ball right on the south edge of the mooring field (no guarantee that our reserved ball wouldn't have been picked up by another boat after the office closed) so I nosed up to it, Jim grabbed the tether, and by the time he had the line secured around a cleat it was dark. Whew!

The tall ships ghosted on past to St Mary's, we poured a glass of wine and cooked up some comfort food (pasta with pesto, sausage, the last of the tomatoes and a good dusting of Parmesan) as we ruminated on the wisdom of having towing insurance. We made new arrangements to see our friends and we tumbled into bed, thankful to see the end of this day.

There are some good pics in the gallery - the real reason I decided to tell you the story.
Vessel Name: Madcap
Vessel Make/Model: Bayfield 36
Hailing Port: Halifax, Nova Scotia
Crew: James D Bissell (Jim) and Elizabeth Lusby (Beth)
About: Beth and Jim have spent several winters sailing southern waters on s/v Madcap. They love Halifax in the summer, but loved to spend the winters exploring warmer places - the Bahamas, Cuba, Mexico, Guatemala, Belize, Honduras.
The Madcap crew left Ottawa in 2007 to go sailing in the Bahamas. After a highly successful year, they returned to Canada, settled in Halifax, Nova Scotia, and in the fall of 2009 they left to do it again! Journey #3 (2010/11) took them back to the Bahamas and then on to Cuba for several weeks [...]
Madcap's Photos - Mad Cap Sailing (Main)
19 Photos
Created 15 May 2017
20 Photos
Created 20 April 2017
62 Photos
Created 30 March 2017
11 Photos
Created 6 April 2016
13 Photos
Created 6 April 2016
5 Photos
Created 6 April 2016
6 Photos
Created 9 March 2016
11 Photos
Created 9 March 2016
23 Photos
Created 25 February 2016
18 Photos
Created 21 February 2016
31 Photos
Created 20 February 2016
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Created 20 February 2016
20 Photos
Created 19 February 2016
7 Photos
Created 9 February 2016
51 Photos
Created 24 November 2015
12 Photos
Created 28 October 2015
16 Photos
Created 9 October 2015
24 Photos
Created 3 December 2013
our Oct/Nov 2013 trip to New Zealand
36 Photos
Created 22 November 2013
9 Photos
Created 20 January 2013
Guatemala pics starting Nov 22, 2012
43 Photos
Created 6 December 2012
54 Photos | 1 Sub-Album
Created 8 November 2012
trip to Zion National Park and Bryce Canyon National Park (via Las Vegas)
23 Photos
Created 4 November 2012
20 Photos
Created 1 November 2012
18 Photos
Created 12 February 2012
43 Photos
Created 29 January 2012
62 Photos
Created 19 May 2011
21 Photos
Created 19 May 2011
76 Photos
Created 19 May 2011
8 Photos
Created 19 May 2011