Saturday, May 30, 2015

Mast Raising, Wind, and Ducklings

Saturday 30 May 2015

I spent the day raising the mast, figuring out what line went where, and tightening the rigging.  Lots of trial and error.  After a bit of google foo, figuring out that “this line is too short to fit here so it must go over there!” and just plain luck, I got everything mostly connected.  Got the main on and covered, no headsail yet installed on the rolling furler.  It was about 5pm, I hadn’t gone out for a spin yet, and Theresa was waiting for me at the campground.

 I almost blew off going for a ride until Suzie Q piped up and said, “Well?  When are we going for a ride?” My face cracked into a grin and we launched for our “Booze Cruise”.

The “Booze Cruise” consists of slowly motoring through a very windy 2nm canal system.  The first nm is all piers, boats, and branches off the canal.  The 2nd part near the bay entrance consists of piers and expensive boats on one side and a marsh on the other.  The entire thing is a no wake zone.  My dockage is literally on the very last canal from the bay.  It’s all very slow and relaxing, couple of beers and about 45-60 minutes round trip depending on your speed.

Today winds were about 25 knots gusting to 30 and it was low tide.  Lousy conditions and I got my first taste of how bad wind can push a boat around.  During high tide boaters tend to stay on the North side of the canal due to the marsh and very low water on the south side.  During low tide you have to hug right up against the boats and piers.  It gets awfully tight. 

I never even managed a single beer as I was fighting the wind the entire way, trying to avoid hitting the docks or God forbid, someone else’s boat.  Made it to the bay, saw all the white caps, turned around and motored back home.  I couldn't even get so much as a single photo.

Arrived at the dock and had so much wind blowing us that we came to a very quick and sudden stop on the dock.  Thank God Keith already had his big boat bumpers out or I would be doing fiberglass work already.

Some ducklings came by for a bit of bread.  Sparky (the dog) couldn't figure out why we weren't feeding him instead.

Lesson learned.  There can be too much wind. 
Motored 4nm

Total distance 14 nm

Friday, May 29, 2015

Launch Day

Friday 29 May 2015 approx 6:00pm

I trailered the boat from home to Ship Bottom Municipal Ramp.  Brian and Carly came with me to motor the boat back to Keith’s house.  

The day was beautiful, the weather so perfect, we took the long way around, motored up near the 72 bridge and then wound our way through the canals (measured at 2nm) to eventually arrive at Keith’s dock.  

My boat’s new home for the summer.  Celebrated with a few cold ones.  Brian’s girlfriend earned the new nickname of “Gopher” because of how she kept popping up the fore hatch and looking around.  Everyone seems to like the new boat!

Distance traveled motor about 10 nm

Monday, May 25, 2015

Memorial Day Weekend

After Florida my sister-in-law picked us up from Philadelphia Airport and we headed down to my "summer home" in Port Republic, NJ.

We camp year round.  Summers are in South Jersey (about 25 minutes from my boat) and in the winter we camp in the Pocono mountains in Pennsylvania.

My brother in law Steve picked up a little flat bottom boat and we puttered along with my nephew just checking out the local waterways.

I knew enough not to take my very inexperienced self and new boat out on the bay during this particular weekend.  Doesn't matter what size boat, we have a fantastic time no matter what.

Friday, May 22, 2015

Vacation in Florida

While not necessarily related to Tipsea, this post still relates to water, boats, and hey Florida.  I mean seriously, I would love to go sailing in Florida.  We spent a week there and every morning I woke up to this backyard.

I visit my dad

spend lots of time on the lake exploring



and generally have a great time visiting family.

Sunday, May 17, 2015

The First Few Weeks of May

The first couple of weeks of boat ownership involved prepping, cleaning, painting, fixing, and dreaming.  I good friend of mine offered me dock space at his creek which connects to Manahawkin Bay, NJ.  That was incredible news as I didn't have to trailer the boat every time I wanted to use it.  I could keep the boat in the water.  It's an hour away and only 25 minutes from where I keep my camper.

The biggest job was bottom paint.  I took the boat from this;

to this;

My wife chipped in and we cleaned up.  The boat had been sitting in an asphalt place for over a year.  It had been covered so the dirt and grime were limited to the outside of the boat.  The insides were clean and just needed a good wipe down with disinfectant and some carpet cleaning.

Then I blew about $500 at West Marine.  I bought life jackets, flares, 1st aid kit, a chart book of NJ waters, a boat hook, Some epoxy, cleaning solution, and who knows what else.  (I'm actually writing this a month later when I decided to start the blog.)

I rushed to try to get everything done because my wife and I were heading to Florida to visit my father for a week.  After my return I intended to launch the boat.

Friday, May 1, 2015

An Introduction and the Start of the Dream

A long, long time ago.  In a state far, far away.  A little boy received a book titled The Boy Who Sailed Around The World Alone.  There were stories of exotic locations, triumphs, and failures.  The photos were riveting and a dream was born.  As tends to happen sometimes, dreams get pushed back.  We go to work, get married, have kids, and just get busy lives.  The dream gets pushed further and further until it all just about gets forgotten about.

Until one day, after a life full of adventure, great memories, and family something changes.  It was over eight years ago, Sunday, July 27th, 2008.  I remember going out fishing with my father-in-law and just staring out at the ocean.  I was doing a photo challenge at the time and captured a photo of a pretty little sailboat.  A tiny spark was ignited and started to smolder.

A few more years go by and not much else happens.  I start talking about sail boats though.  Looking at photos, watching them sail by whenever I could, started reading forums and articles.  Then around August 2014, I purchased a 1980 AMF Paceship PY23.

I launched and motored it to a friends house.  The motor died and the boat started sinking.  Numerous other problems were discovered and I decided I had purchased a "project" boat instead of a "sail" boat.  I sold it April 2015.

On the 29th of April, 2015, I purchased and brought home my "new to me" 2005 MacGregor 26M.  I now had boat payments but most definitely had a working sailboat.  This blog will be about the boat, my experiences, and the memories.