Friday, October 7, 2011

Honey, “ . . . it’s too rough to feed ya.”

Taking a line from Gordon Lightfoot’s Wreck of the Edmond Fitzgerald . . .

We left York River Yacht Haven after a delightful stay relaxing and touring the historic triangle with a forecast of 10-15 knots NE and seas of 1-2 feet.  Prior to departure we topped off the fuel tanks with 45.7 gallons of fresh diesel which after 40 running hours since leaving Rock Hall calculated to only 1.1 gallons per hour.  Not bad compared to the consumption of the large motor yachts we see on the bay.
We motored down the York River on a heading to clear the Poquoson Flats South of the river entrance to find winds already building 12-14 knots and seas running 2-3 feet.  A couple of hours later it was finally sails up, but only to half reef close hauled into  SE building winds and rolling seas. As we cleared the Poquoson River entrance we were finally able to fall off to a reach as the winds went ESE but now gusting 17-18 knots with seas building a choppy 3-5 feet against the outgoing tide we’d ridden down the river earlier. Hence, no lunch till we reached calmer waters.

A couple of hours of pounding into the choppy seas with many items bouncing around in the cabin the winds fell off to 10-12 as we approached Thimble Shoals.  We finally let out the rest of the jib as we crossed a mile to the inside of the Thimble Shoals Light safely with 12-14 feet of water under the keel. We were visited by dolphins again which brought a smile to both of us to lighten up the mood during this trip.
After docking up the Hampton River at Blue Water Yacht Center we went to the Surf Rider restaurant while we waited for the floor to stop moving.  Only 3 engine hours for a 6 hour trip.  I finally got some sailing in, and was glad we didn’t try to beat across to Cape Charles.