Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Atlantic City, NJ

As we left Sachuest on the 16th, winds were north 15, a good direction to continue down the coast so we bypassed Newport, and sailed on to Stonington, CT. As the day progressed, the wind veered to the west at 10kts, slowing us down a bit, but we still averaged 5.3kts for 40 miles. We picked up 50 gallons of diesel and filled the water tank, and they let us have a mooring for the night.

On the 17th, we motored with no winds across Long Island Sound, covering 60 miles at 7.6kts average speed, to anchor in Port Jefferson. There are some nice sand dunes there which Whitefoot and I romped on just before sunset. All of us made another trip up the dunes the next morning. Then we motored again with no wind to Port Washington, 30 miles away. We got a free mooring from Port Washington Water Taxi (the first 2 nights are free, then you pay $40/night) and waited out another day of rain and wind. Our mail was waiting for us in the West Marine, complements of the manager, Joel, and Mom and Dad for sending it there. Now we have a new batch of letters, flying magazines, and sailing magazines to go through.

We left at 7:30am to catch favorable currents through New York Harbor. It was fun seeing 11kts as we cruised through Hell Gate. Exiting the Narrows into the harbor, the wind was favorable for a change, and we sailed the rest of the way to Sandy Hook, NJ, making 7-8kts before having to reef the sails in the 20kt+ winds. We anchored, and I changed the oil in the Yanmar. I used a tiny pump powered by the electric drill, with the hose down the dipstick tube and man did that work sweet. Way better than the almost useless hand pump I’ve used before. According to the news the next morning, 4 men in a speedboat hit the towing cable between a tug and a barge at 11pm out in the harbor. The boat flipped, throwing one man clear, who survived. A Coast Guard diver swam under the boat, and found one body. As he was looking for the others, he got the fright of his life when a hand grabbed him in the dark water. Turned out, one man was breathing in an airspace under the boat, and he survived too! Unfortunately, the other two men died.

We sailed out of Sandy Hook on the 21st, but had to motor after a couple of hours due to decreasing wind and the necessity of covering 50 miles to Barnegut Inlet. On the 22nd, we motored against the wind to Atlantic City, NJ in building seas. We fueled and watered up and returned to the small protected cove around Rum Point. We had pizza and watched “The Guardian” on DVD. Today, the wind has blown 20-30kts from the south, and storms are due tonight. If the wind veers to the north as forecast, we’ll leave tomorrow bound for Cape May.


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