Beautiful Autumn Sailing
Beautiful Autumn SailingReport Abuse
October 4-5, 2008
Beautiful Autumn Sailing
Warren “Guy” Stewart and Jack vanArsdale crewed our last sail of the season on a perfect fall weekend. We motor sailed out of Sandusky Bay and turned Southeast toward Vermilion, Ohio. The northerly breeze proved enough to turn the iron genny off and produce a terrrific sail. Jack worked the helm for most of the trip as we sailed the 22 miles on a fun, breezy, beam reach as the mostly north wind fluctuated towards the east occassionaly, but never came too far forward. It created a sunny day with cool breezes that pushed us comfortably to the high-end playground of Vermilion. Enjoying the benefits of our modern technology we checked the internet via our phones to learn that the Vermilion Yacht Club was open to transients for $1.80 per foot. Falling back to the low-tech cruising guide, we found a number for the Vermilion Boat Club and saved $.30 per foot as well as an extra mile walk to and from the quaint, clean and flower laden downtown.
After tying up at VBC, we learned we needed to be on the opposite side of the finger pier. The three of us merely warped Kelly IV to the other side, placing the stern to the seawall. This was the first time we had the cockpit open to the dock but it proved to be the most private orientation. No one was walking the docks (it is October) and the Vermilion River is like a Venetian Canal in Italy, a liquid Main Street, with boats passing on a constant basis.
We discovered and missed the grand “Wooly Bear Festival”. Apparently this is a huge event with a parade on Sunday followed by a grand display of vendors and craftsman scattered across the park and downtown. During our walk before sunset, we walked to the beach and grounds of the “Inland Seas Maritime Museum”. Unfortunately, it was closed but we saw enough through the glass windows to encourage us to return for another visit.
As usual, food on board Kelly IV was a grand, if given, event. Jack created a classic breakfast on Saturday with coffee, eggs, bacon, toasted Italian bread, grapefruit juice and all done in the tiny 2-burner galley with less room than the smallest phone booth I’ve ever seen! Lunch was more of the same as Jack whipped up some hot onion soup for lunch. “Guy” match Jack’s effort with a hot pancake breakfast on Sunday and a terrific Soft taco “wrap” with hot, spicy ground meat. Now don’t forget, these hot wraps were enjoyed while we were 10 miles offshore, halfway between Vermilion and Sandusky!
Sunday proved to be without any measurable breeze, so we motored our way to Sandusky. Jack had the insight to ask about the autopilot. After our “circling” experience on the way to Leamington, I had dropped the autopilot from consideration. Jack’s question brought the autopilot back into consideration. Given the calm waters, it proved to be an excellent suggestion. The autopilot steered a perfect straight line all the way to the entrance of Sandusky Bay. We had a little trouble disengaging the automaton when we had to steer around a couple fishing boats, but otherwise the old electronics turned out to be just the ticket to a lazy afternoon spent reading, eating, and dozing in the fall sun. OK, we did look around regularly to be sure we didn’t run down those fishing boats, but it was the laziest trip we’ve done this summer and so-o-o-o-o easy!