Wednesday, August 22, 2007

August 21. We were up and underway at 1000 hours. Cuttyhunk is only 4 or 5 hours away so there was no hurry to get going.

After hoisting the anchor we left the anchorage via the north side of Dutch Island. After rounding Dutch Island we turned south and headed back down Narragansett Bay. There was 15 to 20 knots of wind coming from the east so it made for a very spirited sail down the bay.

At the south end of the bay we had to turn east and as we did so we were faced with the prospect of 20 knots of wind dead on the nose. We sailed, south southeast, which was as close to the wind as we could get. The wind was pushing big slow rolling waves at us. Veranda handled the big seas just fine and after heading offshore a couple of miles we tacked back to the north east. Our first tack was going to put us just past Newport which meant a long uncomfortable day of tacking across big seas over and over again to get east to Cuttyhunk.

Christy and I had a quick conference and reminded ourselves that we’re supposed to be having fun. If we kept going east it meant taking an ass kicking all day, its been cold as hell here and it’s only going to get worse as we proceed and oh yeah it was raining. So we decided that Connecticut was nice, Rhode Island was beautiful and to hell with Massachusetts, we turned around.

The wind is supposed to blow hard from the east for the next couple of days so why shouldn’t we turn around and ride it for all its worth. There’s plenty to stop and see in Long Island Sound and if we get back to Jersey a few days early, so what.

As soon as we turned around we were faced with picking a spot to stop for the night. We passed on the Harbor of Refuge at Point Judith as it’s fairly close and we were flying along. We finally decided on the anchorage at Watch Hill where we stopped once before. It’s protected, we’re familiar with it and it’s got some limited Wifi and dog walking is easy enough.

So we end up doing a 40 mile day all under sail. We had a big following sea and were between 7.5 and 9 knots all day. We even saw 10 knots several times and even an 11 as we surfed down the waves. It was the best day of pure sailing we’ve seen in a year.

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