Since 1978 I have been fortunate to sail wooden boats. In 2006 I set out to find a Drascombe Longboat Cruiser for single-handed expedition sailing. This is the continuing story of how it came to be, our adventures, notes on the maritime world and other things I don't want to forget...

Monday, June 30, 2014

Fresh Paint and Varnish

Yesterday I went to visit my new friend Eddie who lives in the Richmond area and is an avid sailor (here's his building log). He was getting ready to put the last coat of varnish on his new build, Una, an Iain Oughtred-designed Sooty Tern. She is a beautiful open double-ender that barely makes it diagonally in the double-car garage. At 19'6" the Sooty Tern is a stretched Arctic Tern. Narrower that the Caledonia Yawl, I am interested in how she sails. Maybe I'll get the chance to find out someday!

Eddie's happy. An he has the right.

She will have the lug-rigged main with mizzen 

Saturday, June 28, 2014

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Outer Banks Old School

As posted before, my first job after grad school was at the NC Aquarium on Roanoke Island. After that 'went south'... a water spout wrecking my apartment in Kill Devil Hills, bad choice in girls, and a grant that faded... I moved to Duck, a few miles north. My good friend Joe Britt was building some of the first beach houses there and asked me to help him start a small recreational sailing business for the new new vacationers. Got a free apartment out of the deal and a lot of studying time for my, then, upcoming cruise south to Florida.


I recently googled Nor'Banks (see here) and found that it is still in business and has grown to one of the Outer Banks "go to" fun spots offering every water sport you can think of. Jon, the son and owner, was a boy back then with a keen interest in what was going on. It paid off.

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Annie on the Move

Last week our stay at Morningstar Marina came to an end. My friends John and Vera have generously offered to let me keep Annie at their house just north of Urbanna off the Rappahannock River. The folks at Morningstar were very helpful and always interested in my trips. I wish them all the best.

There is a boat ramp nearby and a shorter commute... only a hour each way. I am working on plans to explore the river and its tributaries and learn more about the Middle Peninsula of Virginia.

John, Vera and family

Sunday, June 1, 2014

A Perfect Wind

Day 7
As the day lightened and breakfast ended, I weighed anchor and motored south around the shoal waters. Once in the Bay proper we moved north skirting Tangier Island until reaching the western entrance to the harbor. This northing insured that the westward course across to Smith Point would leave the large prohibited area to port. Under full sail and a freshening southwest wind, good time was made. It was perfect.

Smith Point Light, Chesapeake Bay

Steady 15 knot wind on the beam under full sail with 1 foot waves. In an hour Annie was moving into the shipping lane that funnels by Smith Point. The tide had reached full flow and as I heard the centerplate vibrate I looked down at the GPS and saw we were making 7.7 knots over the bottom!

The wind kept freshening and as I approached the protective jetties I dropped sails, started motoring and crabbed sideways under wind and tide. Once behind the rocks it was over. I moved slowly through the creek toward the marina and my road rig.

The rest of the day was spent sorting gear, loading, traveling back to Gwynns, a wash down and back to Richmond. Great trip I have to say.