Saturday, October 24, 2009

Last of the Season

After two very long weeks of work, despite an atrocious forecast I was determined to make one more overnight. We left the mooring at 5 and motored just a mile to a big cove with a view of the sea over a strand low enough to be gone at highest water. My wife likes to anchor close to shore, and I do too when the forecast is settled, but ours called for 35 knots south backing to east. So we dropped anchor in good mud 500 feet from shore, depth 39 feet at high tide. I put out 160 feet of rode, waited for the boat to straighten out, and backed down hard for 30 seconds.  The anchor was deep in the mud and even if it came due north and we were fully  exposed we weren't going anywhere. And I was happy I didn't have to worry that my stern was forty feet from a ledge.

The temperature was in the forties and I started a bright fire. The supply of briquettes was low, so I rowed ashore in the dark and gathered driftwood. I was afraid the spruce driftwood would produce little heat but it did the job very nicely. A couple of scotches, and discussion about what changes to make to the boat this winter.

Dinner was red wine, local lamb chops (with rib pieces attached . . . ), parsnips and brussels sprouts from our garden, and hot indian pudding for dessert. You tell me.

The breeze was rising the whole time and after midnight the rigging began to howl, the rain to rattle, and the sloop to lift and yaw and snub the rode. I got up, once, to freshen the nip (let a few inches of line out, and so avoid chafing one spot all night). I guess it was blowing 30 or so. It wasn't the most restful anchorage, but it was a safe one.

If we were sleepless in the wee hours we made up for it by rising at 8:30. Cold and nasty and no fire, but we had a good breakfast of coffee, bacon and eggs and fried English muffins. The breeze had come down a lot, now due east with a cold rain. I got the anchor rode up and down, secured it, and busted out the anchor with a full throttle. She were dug in.

We motorsailed past our mooring and kept going, for we were bound up the river to the yard for hauling.

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