Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Slow Ride to Lexington

We had a tough day at sea today.  It took us 5 1/2 hours to travel 67 nm against head seas.  The forecast was very wrong as we experienced 20 to 30 kt headwinds which developed 5 to 7 foot seas (and bigger).  The ship and most of the crew did well in these sporty conditions.

Today was a crew change.

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Fishing in Hessel

Been in Hessel the last two days fishing.  Hessel is in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan.  It is remote and great for star gazing.  Also no Internet or time to post to blog.....

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

S.O.Bum Crew Shipped Off to Florida

After being evicted from the Mothership, Bumboat, half the SOB crew said "screw it" and decided to fly south to Florida. ENJOY THE STURGEON, ROVISYS CREW. WE'LL BE SWIMMING WITH MANETEES. 


-Olivia and Victoria 


The weather cleared, but the wind was still blowing 20 knots from the northwest.  Our plan was to go to Washington Island in Wisconsin.  After we cleared the Leelanau Peninsula we saw the full force of the winds and waves on Lake Michigan.  A 4+ hour trip into 4 to 6 foot head seas didn't sound fun, so we reversed course and headed to Northport.

After lunch we headed out on what would turn out to be a 10 mile hike through the cherry orchards and over to Lake Michigan.  Bryan did the hike in his deck shoes which almost turned his toes into cherries.  His entertainment streak ended tonight after being upstaged by a 90 year old pianist who attracted all of the golden agers and left Bryan humming Frank Sinatra tunes.

Pancakes before heading to sea

Overlooking Grand Traverse Bay

Our 10 mile cherry hike

Northport Harbor

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Holed Up in Traverse City

The strategy of coming to Traverse City to sit out the weather was solid.  Today we had non-stop rain from last night until the afternoon.  The wind was howling to 30 knots and the seas were forecast to be large.  The other good news is the marina had a great lounge which allowed the crew to relax in luxurious conditions, rather than tripping over each other on the Bumboat.

We had a great meal at an Asian restaurant (Red Ginger) where we could only get five seats at the bar.  Tom, who screwed up the reservation, had to eat standing up to the rear of us.  He finally got a seat after we bought dessert for our adjacent seat mates.  Of course, the night wouldn't be right if Bryan didn't entertain us.... so, he took advantage of open mike night.

Bryan's poncho was below specifications for heavy rain

Our ship bounced about at the dock

Crew refuge during storm

Evening entertainment by Dave "Bryan" Mathews

Rock star worked the crowd

Monday, August 11, 2014

Traverse City

The weather forecast was poor; rain, wind, and big waves (10 feet) the next few days.  We changed our plans from being in Frankfort to hike Sleeping Bear Dunes to the cover of Grand Traverse Bay.  Our run from Beaver Island to Traverse City was in 2 foot waves and showers.  Traverse Bay was also a good choice for a crew change.

We had dinner at a local microbrewery and the food and beer was marginal.  Moving on to a local pub, we experienced two pitchers of horrid beer (JWH selections).  The night quickly changed when Bryan, our software nerd, did a bit of coding on his phone and began wireless controlling the jukebox.  The girls swarmed him with requests for their songs and to purge other patrons songs from the queue.  Bryan was less enthused with his new football friend (2000 NFL draft) who wasn't amused by his jukebox antics.

Leg 1 crew did an excellent job cleaning ship before departure

Leg 1 and Leg 2 crew exchange

Leg 2 crew settling into life aboard

Our new Pro Football friend

Bryan's Juke Box Junkies

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Beaver Island

The weather looked great for a run over to Beaver Island 31 nautical miles east of Little Traverse Bay.  Once again, the lake was flat and the trip was pleasant.  We docked between two Hinkley's, so we were in good company.  The docks were substantial and provided a panorama of St. James harbor.  Beaver Island is easily described as rustic and quiet.  Right after lunch we rented some bikes and took a 23 mile bike ride around the north half of the island.  Our Huffy bikes had balloon tires and numerous mechanical issues.  Kevin, not a bike fan, described this ride as the worst he can remember.  The roads were primitive with dust flying and bone jarring bumps and holes.  After cleaning up we had dinner at the Beaver Island Lodge and a few drinks at the local bar, The Shamrock.  The only negative was the billions of gnats at the dock.

Beautiful view at the dock

Lunch at Daddy's Dog Shop

Swim break during the bike ride

Sunset at the Beaver Island Lodge

Saturday, August 9, 2014

Harbor Springs

It was going to be another perfect day for motoring on the lake, so we pushed on to Harbor Springs.  Today's cruise was 112 nautical miles and took us a little over 4 hours.  We have traveled with another boat, Encore from VYC, since Old Club.  Yesterday I led the way and today Tom led the way.  As we entered the Straits of Mackinac some fog was around.... but, nothing like the pea soup we experienced in 2011 up here.  Normally, it is very difficult to get into Harbor Springs on the weekend... But the Irish Boat Shop had space since many of their dockers were over at Beaver Island.
Pancakes and sausage for the hard working crew

Mackinac Bridge entering Straits of Mackinac

Operation Kayak

Friday, August 8, 2014

Presque Isle

A high pressure system has located itself over Lake Huron and the lake forecast looks docile..... So it's time to motor up the lake.  Our first stop is Presque Isle which is 190 nautical miles from The Old Club.  We left at 7:15 AM and arrived 8 1/2 hours later after traveling a smooth lake.  After fueling the boat we took a hike to the two lighthouses near the marina.  Dinner at the only restaurant in the area was fine.  The moon tonight was nearly full and super bright in the clear sky.
Leg 0 crew leaving for home as Leg 1 departs

We saw about 10 Lakers on the St. Claire River

Leg 1 lunch as sea north of Port Huron

Presque Isle Harbor

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Biking and Croquet

We went on another 15 mile bike ride and then had the 2014 VYC Croquet Match.  Linda got eliminated in the first match and I advanced to the championship game.... and lost.  The Leg 1 crew arrived around 10 PM.
Only One Rest Stop Today for Photo Op
Old Club has nice court

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Biking and Shooting

The weather was beautiful today.  We woke at dawn to dense fog on the river (photo op).  It was intriguing to listen to the fog signals of the freighters from the boardwalk of The Old Club.  It is true that sound in fog plays tricks on your direction perception of the source.

After breakfast it was off for a 22 mile bike ride to Sans Souci and Algonac.  About 15 members of the club went on the ride.

Rest stop at mile 9

After lunch, filling the fresh water tank, and washing the deck.... it was time to go shooting.  About 10 of us shot 25 to 50 rounds at orange clays over the water.  Our only girl shooter, Nancy Simpson, ended up being the sharpshooter of the bunch.  I shot 50 rounds and my shoulder feels like it.

Nancy bagging clay bird

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Arriving at The Old Club

The weather wasn't so grand today.... rain and thunderstorms ahead of a cold front.  The trip up the Detroit River was gray and dismal.  However, the ride was quite comfortable inside the cabin.

 Bumboat Approaching Ambassador Bridge

After a quick fueling stop at Gross Pointe Yacht Club, we arrived at The Old Club just as the weather began to clear.  The Old Club had us tucked away at a dock in their South Harbor.

Our Old Club dock for next few days

Monday, August 4, 2014

North Bound

We are off on a multi-leg voyage to the upper Great Lakes!!!  Linda and I are joining the VYC cruise which is currently at Boblo Island.
Shoving off in Vermilion

After a couple hours of cruising at 27 knots on a flat lake we arrived at Boblo Island on the Canadian side of the Detroit River.  The docks were short and the water was shallow.... but the company was good (9 boats from the Vermilion Yacht Club).