Monday, January 25, 2016

The weather is here, I wish you were beautiful. Day 4?

So I've lost track of time. Maybe it is day five. Lets see.

  1. Motored Pompano to Biscayne Bay
  2. Sailed for the first time on Arielle
  3. Holed Up, Nasty rain and miserable, entire day on the boat just reading and whatever. .
  4. Holed Up, Nasty winds and Miserable. although I did get my "Sympathy for the Devil" burger at Burgers and beer. 
  5. Sailed Biscayne bay to Key Largo. 
OK, Day 5! She, Need to change that.... Someday.

Left Biscayne and the winds were a brisk 18-20 knots and we needed to pump out. The forward head was so full that it was pressurizing and back flowing into the bowl. It was a lovely site, I will spare you the image and not put up a picture. We motored around the Venetian Causeway to Sunset Harbor Marina and when we got to the harbor I was faced with the daunting task of motoring a sailboat into a channel that was decent sized but million dollar plus boats on both sides and brutal winds across the beam (The Side of the boat) blowing me into the Million Dollar boats. OK, I can handle this. 

We set up the bumpers, Spring lines and mooring lines and I headed in as if I knew what I was doing. As luck would have it, I pulled straight in and had no issues at all. Fear is a relentless bitch. I think I dies a million dollars pulling in. The good news, I had lots of time to play with maneuvering the boat while the crew (Sam and Karla) set up everything and I was able to hold the boat in a single spot by basically performing standing turns every time the wind blew me sideways. It was really kinda awesome. With heads pumped out and fresh water filled back up. We we headed to Key largo. 

As we motored out the channel, sam put on the NOAA weather and there were loads of warnings telling us to stop and don't go there. Small craft advisories, Wave warnings, wind warnings and through it all, we found the seas perfect for a sail. We raised the main and the genoa and we were off with a broad read making about 8 knots. I was happy and the crew was freezing. It was a blustery 45 degrees. Yes folks, that is right, I came to florida to get warm and the temp was freezing cold. The good news was Sam and I spent the previous night laying way points from Miami all the way to Marathon and once we found the first way point, I hit auto pilot and let the machinery do the work, or so we thought. 

Autopilot, what a concept. We set course and off we went. In the wrong direction. We missed the first way point and the boat thought that it was prudent to go back and make certain we passed through it. In the process the sales lifted (Lost wind) and we sat dead in the water. So we deleted the waypoint and kicked in the autopilot again, All was good. Making Way!

Somewhere just north of key largo we lost wind and was sailing at about 4 knots. I had this brain fart to haul in the main sail and just sail on the Genoa so Sam and I pulled it in and we gained nothing, in fact we dropped to 3.5 knots. My theory... if you can call it that.... was that the main was stealing air from the genoa so lets remove the thief and sail on one sail. In this inexperienced sailors mind, that made sense. So back out goes the Main and when it was 3/4 unfurled, Jam. We tried to hack it back in, nothing, Back out, Nothing. The Baton (A thick rod used to help the sail remain a little stiff, was jammed in a fold of the sail. This is a big problem with these types of sails and the reason I don't like them but they are typically easy to use and when they work, they work great. Mine just wasn't working great. I think from reading and just common sense, We really need to put Tension on the leach (Outer edge of the sail) when we furl it back into the mast. Well, it's late, I am tired and it has been a long day.
Sunset in Key Largo Bay


May the winds always fill your sails and the sun and moon light your passage.

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