Friday, September 20, 2013

Hello Ocean

We left our mooring ball in NYC this morning. Against the flood tide current on the Hudson we made slow progress south, only about 2-3knots. Fast moving ferries between NYC and New Jersey are an important part of the public transportation system. So much traffic it was like playing Frogger on a boat but with following wakes bouncing us up & down. We finally reached NY Harbour, raised sails paid homage to Lady Liberty with an official sail past, now dodging big tour boats and Staten Island Ferries. Next it was on through the Narrows under the Varezanno bridge, huge cargo ships and tugs towing barges with long cables were the challenges on the this level of the video game Escape Manhattan.

Hello Ocean!! From here on it was all ocean baby! With a reefed main and reefed genoa (hey we're being cautious) we passed Coney Island and then skirted the southern shore of Long Island. Ocean winds are often pretty constant in both strength and direction which makes for great cursing sailing. Once in the ocean we didn't tack even once, which is good because Cassandra was getting pretty tired from all the tacking around shipping in NY Harbour. To test ourselves we unreefed the genoa and then the mainsail. We we're flying along at 6-7knots and heeling quite a bit. I took my yet to be installed inclinometer and it read 20degrees (we're more comfortable with 10-15degress). At some point, we didn't even notice from the cockpit, the salon table ripped out of its supports again (inadequate supports to start with in my opinion – another thing to be fixed. Sigh). Apart form that we had an excellent run all the way to Jones Inlet. We have never entered an ocean inlet and our new chart plotter didn't offer much guidance (in fact is actually said that due to frequent changes it didn't have reliable depth or buoy information. Another sailboat had been behind for much of the day. I hailed him on the radio and asked if he was also entering the inlet and if he could guide us. He was, could and would. Vinny, single handing his Hunter 34 Asisu, swiftly passed us and we not only followed him in but also followed all his streaming advice on surfing the following hurricane swells and avoiding nearby sandbars (he had had first hand experience). We are very grateful for his help, things could have turned out very differently without.

Once safely in we waited about 20mins for a bascule bridge to open and then penetrated deep into the vast network of canals to our destination dock at the Town & Country Dental clinic in Freeport Long Island. I know... a dental clinic with boat docks? That's how boat centric Long Island is!

We'll be spending about a week here visiting with my sister, brother in law and baby niece. We'll also obviously be spending a lot of time on boat repairs, installations and other boat stuff.

Can't get a checkered cab in NYZ!

The new Freedom Tower dominates NYC skyline

Armpit hair... she's French

Awful sail trim... I know, it was a lot to manage at once.

Table's anchored... floorboards not so much...

Our guiding light

Now this is a HOUSEBOAT!

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