Perfect Sailing with UK, Irish, & Troop 360
Perfect Sailing with UK, Irish, & Troop 360Report Abuse
This past weekend, July 17-19, Kelly hosted a full crew of 5 people, but much younger than last week's crew! While Ollie Browne provided the experience (he's my age or so), Smithy, Adam and Paul are all about 19 years old.
As you may recall from a few weeks ago, Ollie was born & bred in Ireland, then became a US Citizen after working here for several years. To enhance the international flavor of the weekend, Paul (my youngest son) brought his friend from the 2007 World Scout Jamboree, Smithy of the UK. To round out the crew with a local flavor (flavour?) Adam Bartos, Eagle Scout and Paul's friend from Troop 360, joined the sailing on Kelly IV.
We cooked breakfast while still in the marina and took our time in leaving as the forecast said higher winds in the morning, then reducing to 15 - 20 knots in the afternoon. It turned out to be a terrific sail! We were able to set our sails to take advantage of the 15 knot westerlies almost immediately out of the marina. We sailed all the way out of the bay and headed north along the east coast of Kelley's Island all on a wonderful beam reach. We were sailing at about 6 knots in almost flat water the entire way! The sailing was every bit as good as the trips to and from Huron last week, but with more breeze so the sail was much more exhilarating. Ollie, Paul and Adam all took turns at the wheel and enjoyed the wonderful breeze.
Once we turned northwest to turn towards Middle Bass Island, our anchorage for the night, our trim became close hauled as we found ourselves beating into the wind. Unfortunately, Kelly IV does not point as well as she might so we were tacking through 120 degrees. After four tacks we had sailed twice the distance from northeastern Kelley's Island to Middle Bass and were still a couple miles short of the anchorage. In the midst of our tacking we found ourselves very close to the international border with Canada. Being that close it just seemed appropriate that our international crew should nose over the line and we took Kelly IV 300 feet into Canada before tacking. While the sailing was terrific thanks to flat water and continued fine breeze, we decided to motor that last couple miles and dropped anchor just a hundred yards south of the spot where we dropped the hook a week and a half earlier. This time the breeze had much more of a westerly component, so anywhere along the eastern shore of Middle Bass was a great anchorage. We weren't the only boat to think so as we were the 11th boat there and 2 more anchored after us. With 3 strapping young men on board it was no trouble to assemble the port-a-bote and row ashore. What I had not thought about until we were somewhere north of Kelley's is that the dinghy only holds 4 adults. With 5 people on board we couldn't take everyone ashore in a single trip. Paul decided he wanted to swim and as we were only 150 yards from shore it seemed quite reasonable. We paced alongside Paul as we rowed so we arrived on the beach at the same time. Our explorations ashore led us to St. Hazards, this time for a full meal. For the return trip to Kelly IV, Paul decided not to swim, but instead made two rowing trips. For the first trip Ollie and Adam were rowed by Paul, then Smithy and I got the second ride with Paul providing the muscle.
When we checked the weather on Saturday morning the Sunday forecast called for a slightly milder breeze of 10-15 knots out of the WNW. That would make the return trip across the north shore of Kelley's a broad reach, followed by a beam reach south along the east of Kelley's all the way into the bay. When we checked the weather on Saturday night we discovered a significant change. Now the forecast predicted winds of 5-9 knots and less than 5 knots in the afternoon. As a result we changed our plans to sail away as soon as we got up Sunday morning. After a few minutes to let everyone wake up, Paul and Smithy retrieved the hook as we sailed up to the anchor. No motoring required! Ollie volunteered to serve the hot oatmeal breakfast while we were underway and Smithy took the wheel as we enjoyed a sedate, but fun, broad reach. The reach kept threatening to become a slower run as the wind flickered between a westerly and northwesterly. We decided the westerly seemed more prominent, so we kept south along the west coast of Kelley's trying to maintain a broad reach. The breeze lasted until about 11:30am as we passed the southern coast of Kelley's and turned east towards Marblehead and Sandusky Bay. We kicked the motor into gear and used the iron genny until we reached a point about a mile east of the coal pier. The breeze picked up again and we sailed the last mile or so past the pier and all the way to the marina. The motor was running great and we pulled into the slip wrapping up a terrific weekend.