April 2009 Archives

Ready to Roll

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Today, Gladie, Wil and I moved a lot of gear down to Averisera. It was a stunning day, weather-wise. Temps went straight up, so by 11am, we had changed to short-sleeved shirts and shorts. The high for the day was in the high 80s.

We spread out each sail on the tarps we had brought back last weekend. I made a small rub patch on the main, where it touches the spreaders downwind. The two jibs and Summer Squash, our .75 oz spinnaker, all had been washed and put away last fall, so they passed inspection right off. We also brought down some of the galley stuff, which makes Averisera feel like home. Plates and cups in the lockers!

The water pump wasn't working well, so we disassembled the plumbing and found the filter was really gunked up. That cleaned up easily enough. We also commissioned the head, and checked the batteries. We ran the engine under load for about 25 mins, and no bad black smoke or odd behavior from our Yanmar 1GM.

The mainsail is bent on, the sailcover is in place. Averisera is starting to look like a sailboat again.

Bottom Wash

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How's your bottom? Mine could use a little exercise :)

No really. Today Averisera was hauled and bottom-washed. She really wasn't too bad, just somewhat slimy. Gladie and I arrived and took some shots, for documentation, and then did some light sanding and helped clean the green slime just under the boot stripe.

Some barnacles got a foot-hold on the propeller and shaft. But she looks a lot better after her bath!

And back in the water she goes, all nice and clean.

Who likes artichokes?

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Gladie and Elizabeth!!
Flounder, couscous and big artichokes!Yummmm
Today Gladie and I went over to Admiral's Hill, to check on Averisera and remove the tarps.
Small amount of wood for the frame and 5 tarps.

Whose hats are these?Pride of ownership
On Sunday, Gladie and I got up and headed off to do the closer environs to Grandma Lamb's. This would include Harwich, Chatham, some of Dennis, the cranberry bogs, Nantucket Sound, Chatham Light, and Pleasant Bay.
The weather was nippy, and the wind was high. We drove straight down Bay Road to Pleasant Bay, the Harwich public beach. There were whitecaps and only one lonely catboat on a mooring. Still winter scenery.
We drove down Route 28 south to Chatham Light, parked and took a nice long walk along the sandy spit that has formed at the still-new-in-geologic-time cut.

Next we moseyed along the back way around Stage Harbor, and then back onto Route 28, where we turned off for Red River Beach in Harwich. So many periwinkle shells were on the beach that it was hard to imagine how there might be any left alive. We found a few survivors among the rubble, and threw them back into the sea.
After a nice beach walk along Nantucket Sound, we set out again, this time to see the cranberry bogs. Off Depot Road we stopped to see the now drained and cleared working bogs. The water level was down in the irrigation ditches, and the sand was cleared. The bushes are very red, just before they get their leaves.
Our next stop was Bells Neck, where we spied 3 pairs of swans. They are amazing to watch on takeoff and landing. Numerous birds were active in the marsh and the reservoirs, but it was time to head back to Huckleberry Path for a nice brunch of French Toasted Portuguese bread, with bananas.
I went down to the Cape on Thursday to visit my mama, and Gladie was due to join me for a right whale search on Saturday morning. Gladie arrived right on time at 9am and we set out from Harwich for Cape Cod Bay. Our first stop was in Orleans, but we took a side-trip to Nauset Beach, due to the front page article in the Cape Cod Times that a Snowy Owl had been spotted there. We didn't find it after a brief walk offroad. We decided we would better spend our time focusing on what we had planned.
Right Whales have been seen in Cape Cod Bay for the past several weeks. We had heard reports of them being seen as far south as Eastham. So we headed across Orleans to Rock Harbor, to get a view of the bay from its south end. In the parking lot, there was a Wishing Bell. Gladie donated some cash and made a wish and a very loud clang. I wonder if that drove the whales north?

Our drive took us north through Eastham to First Encounter Beach, where we looked through binnies to see what we could see. Nothing again, so we headed a little further north to Campground Beach. Again, winter ducks, Brandts and Song Sparrows, but no right whales. We made a final stop before lunch at the Wellfleet Bay Audubon Sanctuary.

Here we saw lots of birds but no whales. It was somewhat unlikely, since the sanctuary is surrounded by very shallow water and marshland, but we had a nice walk out to Try Island. On the Bay View Walk, there was a dead Risso's Dolphin, which made us sad. We saw another one later in P'town.
We also saw a very cute Red Squirrel in the Butterfly Garden!

Well, it was way past 1pm, so we drove to Wellfleet Harbor and the Bookstore Restaurant, which I felt pretty sure was a spot we could get oysters!
We were so hungry by this time that we were overjoyed to see oysters on the sign outside. Oysters for an appetizer, oysters for an entree. Yay!

After lunch, we drove straight up Route 6a to P'town. It's such a beautiful drive, through the narrowing forearm and wrist of the Cape. You can see across the dunes that face the Atlantic on your right, and the bay beyond the cottages on your left. I always love this wild section of the Lower Cape.
We parked at the start of the jetty that crosses from the base of the wrist, to Wood End, which is the base of the fingers curved down.
Here is a google satellite pic. The jetty is the long thin line running from top to bottom.

View Larger Map

Gladie was impressed with the reflection of the mother of pearl inside the shells that lay just under the surface. It was hard to capture what it looked like, but I like this picture.
We pressed on across the jetty, which I guess is over a mile. I'd like to find out. It took us a good hour to get close to the dunes on the other side. Folk told us that yes, the whales were just beyond the dunes, and you didn't need binocs to see them. They were frolicking in the water nearby. We were so excited and hastened our pace.
We got to the sand dunes, while the clouds grew more threatening. Several folk heading out, turned back in the face of the threat of rain. Gladie and I made it to the far shore, and hunkered down in the comfort of the dune grass. We watched and stared and trained our binocs in every direction. We saw what we believe was a flipper, or perhaps several different flippers, but no breaching whales. We are calling it a doubtful sighting. With the end of day closing in on us, and rain beginning, we set back out over the jetty.
Looking ahead we could see the P'town monument, with a sea of birds settling in for the evening. There were hundreds of Red-breasted Mergansers, a fair number of Eiders and more Brandt.
All the Eiders seemed to be traveling in pairs.
Gladie worked hard at trying to capture the paired off ducks in the dying light.
When we got back to the end of the jetty near the road, we came across a Great Cormorant, perched on the side of the rocks. Poor thing looked like it had an injured foot, although not recently. The bird stayed put, even though we got within a couple of feet of it. It tucked its head down, as if to say, please stop staring at me. So we did.
On the way back, we bought some nice wine and some cod, and had a lovely dinner at Grandma Lamb's!

Spring Boat Stuff

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Gladie and I went down to Averisera, after stopping by Alicia's to drop off some more quilt books. There is momentum at that house!

Averisera was snug in her slip. Wind had picked up, and we could feel the pressure as we walked toward her berth. Everything looked good. Gladie slipped aboard to check the bilge, while I scrubbed the rudder and propeller. The rain began to fall in earnest.

Inside, there was a couple of inches of water in only two of the bilge sections. Odd I thought. The outside most sections had water, but there was no water anywhere else, except under the floor in the head area. That spot I know collects leaks from the hatch above. And we've had a ton of rain lately. We pumped the little bit of water, with the new bilge pump (actually just the hose is new). I think the hose is a bit too long though. We might need to make a trim.

I turned the seacock for the seawater intake to the engine, turned the battery switch to all, and we started up the engine. She started on the first try (yay!) and we let her run at a medium-high throttle for about 1/2 hour. That was what they told us at the diesel seminar a week ago. :) Water was being pumped out the exhaust, and tiny puffs of white smoke. All looked as it should.

We put everything away, and headed back home in now pouring rain, temp only just above 40. We're cold and wet, and in need of a nice lunch. Cheese omelets with peppers and onion. Yummmm.


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Alicia has been working hard at finishing a baby quilt for her friend Manon, who just had a beautiful baby boy, Merlin. The quilt is based on the Snail's Tail pattern, but features cats in the alternate squares, with the Snail's Tail serving as the cats tail. Pretty cool. It's not finished yet. This pic shows it lined, batted, and basted, ready for quilting.

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This page is an archive of entries from April 2009 listed from newest to oldest.

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