This blog chronicles the adventures of the sailing vessel Moonraker. We just finished the second year of our cruising life. We explored the US East Coast from Maine to Florida, the Bahamas, Haiti, PR, and the Virgin Islands.

19 May 2016 | Port Annapolis Marina, Annapolis, MD
06 April 2016 | Port Annapolis Marina, Annapolis, MD
13 February 2016 | Port Annapolis Marina, Annapolis, MD
21 January 2016 | Port Annapolis Marina, Annapolis, MD
09 December 2015 | Port Annapolis Marina, Annapolis, MD
05 November 2015 | Annapolis, Maryland
22 October 2015 | Annapolis, Maryland
01 October 2015 | Annapolis, Maryland
14 August 2015 | Annapolis, Maryland
15 July 2015 | Annapolis, Maryland
08 June 2015 | Hillsmere Shores Marina, Annapolis, Maryland
26 May 2015 | Annapolis, Maryland
14 May 2015 | Annapolis, Maryland
09 March 2015 | Annapolis, Maryland
17 February 2015 | Annapolis, Maryland
08 January 2015 | Annapolis, Maryland
08 December 2014 | Annapolis, Maryland
31 October 2014 | Annapolis, Maryland
20 October 2014 | Annapolis, Maryland
04 October 2014 | Port Annapolis Marina, Annapolis, Maryland

The Two That Got Away

08 February 2014 | New Bight, Cat Island, Bahamas
A long time cruiser told us recently to always take the gift of the right weather and wind direction to sail when it’s given to us. Today we were given that gift. We knew it would be a good day to sail to Cat Island but it turned out to be a great day. We left the anchorage before dawn this morning to give us plenty of time to sail the fairly long distance north on the Atlantic Ocean from Long Island to Cat Island. We made pretty good time and arrived at our destination after eight hours of glorious sailing. It didn’t hurt at all that the sea state was relatively calm.

We figured we were on the ocean, we had to try and fish again. We put out our Cuban Yo-Yo – the hand line that trolls off the stern of the boat. We knew we might get lucky because we saw fish jumping out of the water all around us. Finally we had a fish on the line! Bill could see right away from the color that it was a Mahi Mahi and it was about twenty pounds and four feet long. Exactly the fish he was hoping for since he knows he likes eating that kind. The fish wasn’t that thrilled about being caught, he was fighting a lot. Bill managed to reel him towards the boat, and as you can kind of see from the picture above, he was almost to the point where we could pull him on board when the fishing line bumped into something sharp on the boat and broke. The fish got away along with one of our lures. Too bad, but we learned a number of things from that attempt. Bill got another lure and put the line right back out off the boat. Most of the day we were in water that was over four thousand feet deep. We were just about to pull the line in as we got to shallower water when Bill realized he had caught something else. He reeled it in and we saw a relatively small, maybe two foot barracuda on the end of the line. We knew we didn’t want to keep him and we were not quite sure how to get him off the hook when he managed to disconnect the hook himself and swim quickly away. We were relieved!

We feel that we have learned some things from this experience and are looking forward to trying again. For now though we are anchored off of Cat Island. We haven’t been to land yet but we will go check it out tomorrow and probably spend a couple of days here until the next weather gift comes along.
Vessel Name: Moonraker
Vessel Make/Model: Bayfield 40
Hailing Port: Annapolis, MD
Crew: Bill & Donna Shuman
This blog will record our adventures as we continue our new cruising life. This summer (2013) we plan to head north and explore the coasts of Maine and Nova Scotia. We will return to Annapolis in the fall for the SSCA GAM and then head south on the ICW to Florida. [...]
Moonraker was built in 1986 and had two owners before we bought her in 2005. After spending nearly two years on the hard making all the repairs and improvements that I had promised Donna we wouldn’t have to do if we bought her, we were finally ready to go sailing. For the next several years we [...]
Moonraker's Photos - Main
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Who: Bill & Donna Shuman
Port: Annapolis, MD

Where in the World is Moonraker

Our Boat

Moonraker is a 1986 Bayfield 40 designed by the famous Ted Gozzard and built in Ontario, Canada. The rig is a cutter/ketch. Here are some of her specs:

LOA: 45 ft. 6 in.
LWL: 30 ft. 6 in.
Beam: 12 ft.
Draft: 4 ft. 11 in.
Displacement: 21,000 lbs.
Ballast: 8,200 lbs.
Sail Area: 1,009 sq. ft.

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