Anywhere But Kelleys!, July 16-18
Anywhere But Kelleys!, July 16-18Report Abuse
Anywhere But Kelleys!, July 16-18
Warren “Guy” Stewart and Sean Stull joined us for a “spur-of-the-moment” weekend cruise. After perusing the Sailing Schedule for Kelly IV, I realized that we could fit in an extra weekend of Sailing! A couple quick calls and Guy and Sean were signed up for a couple days away from the “real world” and off to a cruise in the western Lake Erie islands.
We bought our provisions and met at the marina on Friday night and stowed our stuff on board. Saturday morning, Sean prepared a great breakfast of omelets and bacon and fruit then we let loose the lines and motored out of Sandusky Bay. With the wind out of the SW we set our sails and had a great reach up the east coast of Kelleys Island. Both Sean and Guy had sailed with us several times before, but both had only visited Kelleys Island, none of the others across the western Lake. It became clear to the Skipper that our destination could be anywhere in the islands Except Kelleys! Even after clearing the infamous “Kelleys Triangle”, we were still able to sail to the NW so we merely tucked in a reef (the breeze was about 15 – 18 knots) and sailed close hauled towards Middle Bass Island. While Guy is a fine helmsman, he is just as happy reading his jewelry magazines and spending a lazy day on deck in the sun. Sean took the helm and did a terrific job in the breeze as Kelly IV found her groove and streaked across the small waves. The sailing was tremendous!
Our initial understanding of the overnight forecast was a south breeze clocking to southwest, so I thought we might anchor at Put-in-Bay (PIB). We did our routine ice-pickup by sailing by the Boardwalk fuel dock, tossing them a few bucks and they throwing a few bags of ice on board, all without tying up. Then we headed for the anchorage. After dropping the anchor, it was clear that the wind was already significantly from the WSW or even due west. We listened again to the radio and the forecast now said the overnight winds were going to clock from SW to NW, not a good direction for the anchorage at PIB. We upped anchor and motored to the anchorage on the east side of Middle Bass Island where we were able to set the CQR on the first try.
With crew, the effort to assemble and launch the Port-a-Bote dinghy was easy and brief, so we were ashore soon after we cooled off with a swim and grabbed our wallets. Sean and Guy were focused on exploring all there was to be seen on Middle Bass Island. They were thrilled to have sailed to someplace different, someplace other than Kelleys! We walked the length of the island past a community cookout at the Town Hall, visited Walleyes to see the pool and grab a bite to eat, then walked through the marina and campground in the state park and finally stopped at St. Hazard's for a nightcap. The folks at Hazard's were kind enough to give us a ride to our dinghy in the free shuttle, so we were back on board soon after.
The next morning was a lazy one as Sean prepared another fine breakfast, Guy prepped the fixins for our lunch underway and we took another dip in the clear, cool Lake Erie waters. We sailed off the anchor, but did need to use the motor briefly for a couple forward pushes against the 12-15 knot breeze. We left a reef in the main and sailed off to the SE leaving Ballast and Kelleys islands to our starboard. We tried continuing past Kelleys and pointing as high as we could, but there was to much south in the 15 knot breeze and our ETA was going to be too late for Guy and Sean to return. We furled the genny and motored into Sandusky Bay. Once there, we still had some time so we enjoyed close reaches and close hauled sailing back and forth until it was time to call it a day. Guy and Sean fired up the grill at the marina and we had an excellent kabob dinner before they took to the highway for their return to the “ real world”.