Posts about places we’ve sailed to.
Scout’s arrival to the west side of Puerto Rico via the ominous Mona Passage could not have been more contrary to its reputation. We had a comfortable motor sail in becalmed water. A magical full moon and breaching humpback whales guided us in to the town of Puerto Real, just north of Boqueron.
Going south east from The Exumas Islands in The Bahamas is considered a big, transitional step for many sailor cruisers. Beyond the relative safety of The Exumas lie the Out Islands of The Bahamas, and this also means some true, bluewater Atlantic sailing.
Apart from the painfully early, pre-dawn start, the sail from Little Harbour in the southern Abacos to the north of Eleuthera was perfect with a broad reach all of the way. We realized early on that Scout was part of a flotilla of sailboats also making the most of the early start to Eleuthera.
We spent a few days in Plymouth reprovisioning, and being what most visitors are - a tourist. A tour of the reconstructed Mayflower mark II gave visitors a flavor of what it must have been like for the first pilgrims to sail from England to the New World in 1620. With 132 passengers and crew on board, plus various domestic animals and cattle, it must have made those 10 weeks at sea fly by!
Bar Harbor proved to be our most easterly destination. While we had teased ourselves with the idea of heading a little further on towards Canada, it was mid-August, and the weather seemed to be changing. We decided to start heading south towards New York, where we needed to be by September.
There’s a storm approaching! Our PredictWind app was forecasting gusts of 35 knots in the Penobscot Bay area of Maine. With this info, we decided this would be a good time to seek out a protective hurricane hole and sit it out for a few days. The place we had in mind was beautiful - yet remote - Seal Bay, which was accessed via a meandering channel on the east side of Vinalhaven Island.
Farewell Boston! It was fun while it lasted, but we were itching to spread our sail wings and ultimately head down to Maine as locals say, meaning downwind sailing. Our plan was to hop along the coast for reasonably short day sails from 12 to 25 miles a time. This stretch of the coastline from Boston, Massachusetts to Portsmouth, New Hampshire would have us stopping off for the night at Salem, Gloucester and Rockport.
Now that Scout was safely docked in Boston, the only thing missing from her interior was us. Once jobs, graduations and homes were dealt with, we promptly took the red-eye from the west to east coast of the US. In what we hope will be the last of the large luggage for a while, we found not one but three of those over-rated inflatable travel neck pillows. I already have a purge pile as I practice living minimally.
I recently took advantage of a wonderful opportunity to spend 9 nights with Mahina Expeditions sailing a 2015 v1 Garcia 45 North of Seattle in the Pacific Northwest. During this time expedition leaders Amanda and John of Mahina, plus 6 other crew members including myself got to experience a diversity of sailing conditions and locations. The trip involved cruising the beautiful San Juan islands, some night-time sailing in the choppy waters of the Strait of Juan de Fuca, a further passage out into the Pacific, and the loss of our propeller at midnight as we sailed into a reasonably unknown anchorage…more on that later.