Redwings Round the World

New England

10 June - 3 July 2000

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10 June - Block Island, Rhode Island (Photo)

Aaron - I awoke at 0430 and by 0500 we were underway just as it was light enough to see.  I let the crew sleep and actually really enjoyed the beautiful morning by myself.  Another windless day so no need to wake them.

I decided to get going early since we would have the current with us all the way to Block Island if we could get going by 0600.  In addition, I wanted to get there early enough so that we could spend some time touring the island before Ann Marie and Steph had to catch a ferry back to the mainland.  Another easy uneventful motor.

We arrived around 1200.  There was what looked to be a parade of sail boats heading away from BI back towards Long Island Sound and Connecticut.  Must be a lot of people who sail up for the weekend.  Boat after boat.  We bucked the trend and entered the narrow passage to Great Salt Pond - a pond-like harbor in the middle of the island with only one narrow entrance - and found a good spot to anchor.  As the tide drained out of the pond, so did the boats.  One by one they left.

We actually anchored near a "real" Kelley-Peterson 46 and the owners came over to day hello.  They recently bought the boat which used to be named "Photon".  I remember seeing a photo of this boat when it was for sale.  There is still one posted on the Peterson group website I think.  We had never been on a KP46 (Redwings is actually a Formosa 46 and is only 45 feet long - the KP46 is actually 46).  We took a tour and were surprised how different the boats are.  The KP46 definitely seems to be a bit bigger and wider.  The deck layout (winches etc) is better and the gear heavier.  The interior is totally different.  It seems like the Formosa 46 is actually a lot more like the KP44 than the KP46.  Very interesting to finally see one.

We dingined in with the bikes and Steph and Ann Marie rented bikes when we got ashore.  After a greasy shore-side lunch, we spent the day riding around the island.  Its nice to be somewhere every day with enough time to get a bit of exercise.  Steph and Ann Marie turned in their bikes and caught a cab to the ferry terminal at around 1600.  It was nice to have them visit and its an amazing feeling to be so close to family and friends that a weekend visit is possible!

We went to bed early as if all looks good in the morning, we will make a break for Buzzards Bay and possibly all the way though the Cap Cod canal and on towards the South Shore.

11 June - Duxbury, Massachusetts

Aaron - Another 0430 start.  A bit of wind today however so we put up the main at anchor while the light filled in.  We were again under way at around 0500.  If the current does what its supposed to do, and if we can make the Cape Cod Canal by 1500 (leaving us two hours of positive current in the canal), we should be able to make it all the way to the South Shore and surprise Colleen's parents.  We were originally figuring we would go to Martha's Vineyard but we now really feel like "getting home" and moving on any and all good weather windows.  We are so close and can always cruise these waters.

We made good time sailing and motor sailing and arrived in plenty of time to traverse the canal with positive current.  The current runs up to five knots in either directions so you really have to get the timing right.  We cranked through the 10 mile canal in about an hour (photo) enjoying 3-4 knots of current.

We popped out the other side and figured we'd try to make Duxbury Harbor.  On the chart, it looked like there was a nearby anchorage we could stay if there turned out to be no room in the inner harbor.  Its a bit tough to find a good spot along this part of the coast.  The wind build as we cranked up the coast and was of course blowing 20, starting to rain, and we were surrounded by lobster pots by the time we were ready to take down the main.  We got it down however, and started the long motor around the banks and mud banks past Plymouth and up into Snug Harbor (Duxbury).  We called the harbormaster on the VHF and fortunately, he had one mooring available for a 45 footer so we took it.  10 bucks a night.  Great deal.  Eddie the harbor master was so nice and was really excited to hear we had come from Hong Kong.  Always a helpful card to play to get more assistance.

Colleen dingied in to call her parents and tell them about our arrival. They have a summer house just 6 miles away and just moved down today.  We told them not to expect us till the end of the week.  Eddie refused to let her dingy back out and gave her a ride out in the launch to pick up me and the cats.  Colleen's dad soon arrived and we all drove back to their house.  Wow.  Seems like we sort of made it / finished our trip.

The cats ran wild through the house and never stopped all night. 

12-25 June - Duxbury, Massachusetts

Aaron - We are still moored in Duxbury Harbor almost two weeks after arriving.  After the first night at the Duggan's, the cats got kicked out as they dug all of the dirt out of the plant pots and were generally crazy so we moved them back to the boat.  We have been sleeping on the boat, waking up at around 0800, feeding and playing with the cats, coming in to Marshfield (Duggan's house) for the morning, heading back around noon - early afternoon to feed the cats, then coming back to Marshfield for the evenings before heading back to the boat.  I have been focusing on searching for jobs in the Boston area.  We would prefer to live in Maine, but if I can't find the right job up there, we will start off down here.  Its actually been fun looking and a nice break from the boat.  Thank God for the internet and e-mail.  Its so easy to organize a job search these days.  We plan to leave here sometime next week as we need to be in Maine by next Saturday the 30th for my dad's 60th birthday party.

26 June - Duxbury, Massachusetts to Maine

Colleen - We had become pretty soft with our semi-land life over the past two weeks.  We would wake up every morning, dinghy ashore, and drive 10 minutes from Snug Harbor, to my parent's waterfront house in Marshfield, where we would have breakfast and base ourselves for the day.  We would try to make it back to the boat once a day to feed the cats and play with them a bit, and then would return every evening just before bedtime to sleep on the boat.  

It was hard to pull away and decide to head off again for Maine, but we knew we had to make it up for Aaron's father's birthday party.  Aaron's mother came down to Marshfield to stay with my folks while her brother, Red, received medical treatment in Boston's Mass General Hospital.  In the evening my parents where having a big dinner party with my uncle and aunt visiting from Ireland, my uncle, Aaron's mum, my sister, my sister in law, and assorted babies.  To eat and run to rush off for the boat was difficult.      Additionally, I was really tired as we drove back to the boat after a very long day up in Boston, and full of no energy to get the boat ready for an early a.m sail.  

Aaron's mother dropped us off and we paid the harbor master for our two week stay on the mooring.  The evening was lovely and calm and we both thought the same thing at the same time; we're not really ready, but we should take advantage of this good weather and set off now.  We decided to do the minimum we need to get ready and set off in haste.  

Back to the boat, we pulled up the dinghy and motor, I put away the newly bought groceries, and stowed the loose items on the boat.  We motored out of the Duxbury/Plymouth channel into a beautiful sunset. 

We kept good speed on, hoping to make it out of the long channel, and far beyond lobster buoy range before dark.  By 9 p.m., we seemed to be pretty well along our way, and getting ready to round Brant Rock, a few miles off shore.  I wanted to go to sleep, but couldn't resist calling my parent's place to tell them to look out for our light as we sailed by.  I gave my father a ring around 9:30pm, but I think we were so far out they couldn't really differentiate the light of Redwings.  Still it was exciting to think we were sailing by my house, all the nights I had looked out at the ocean in my life, never associating with the kind of ocean Redwings could be sailing by.

I was in bed by 10 p.m., after a quick look to make sure Aaron would avoid a marker buoy...... zzzzzzzz  

27 June - Harpswell, Maine

Colleen - At first it was hard to sleep, but I was pretty shocked when Aaron nudged me awake at 4 a.m. for my shift.  Light was just beginning to appear in the East so Aaron effectively did the whole night.  Actually, I'm getting it pretty easy these days due to my condition (did anyone catch that?).  The morning was perfectly still and calm, I reflected on how easy we were getting off.  During my shift there were many fishing boats to be dodged as we passed north of Cape Ann.  The kittens were very rambunctious.  Probably happy to finally see us spending time on the boat again, wondering if life would now always be based on our Duxbury schedule when we really only saw them when we came back to sleep in the evenings.  Both cats were wild scurrying up and down the coach house, up in the boom....

Aaron - I came up at 0800 from my four hour sleep to a beautiful morning.  Flat seas, light SW winds of 5-10 behind us, motor sailing along at 6 knots.  We are off Maine now!  Although about 20 miles offshore....  At 1200 Cape Porpiose came into view and then Cape Elizabeth and by 1400, we were entering Casco Bay.  Lobster pots thickening.  Past Halfway Rock and into Harpswell Sound.  It really is beautiful here.  Fresh crisp air, dinging and dodging bell and gong buoys, lobster boat diesels "duh, duh, duh" in the distance, seagulls squawking overhead..... The lobster traps were so thick in Harpswell Sound one could almost walk across them in some places.  Good thing we left yesterday evening so we arrived in daylight.  By 1500 we were on a guest mooring at the Orrs and Bailey Island Yacht Club that my dad had arranged for us.  Another leg done.  Ok, this really is the last overnighter Colleen I promise!

27 June - 1 July - Harpswell, Maine

Aaron - Dad picked us and the kittens up at 1700 and shuttled us back to the homestead.  Happy 60th birthday dad!  The kittens again quickly adjusted to a bit of land life and had great fun digging in Dad's garden and running around the yard and up the trees.  The family cat Catalogue quickly established dominance over Manuel (with Polly watching in the background) with a bit of hissing and posturing, and then ignored the upstarts.

We spent the next few days hanging out with Dad, Becky and Brady and helped with the big 60th birthday party on the 29th.  Sort of a family reunion with cousins, grandma, aunts and various others at the fete.  A bit of a Henderson side homecoming celebration for us as well.  Great fun and luckily good weather.

We also headed down to Portland for a couple of job interviews I had.  Interesting.  Seems like something might work for me in Maine, especially if I am willing to live in the Portland area.  We'll see.  On the way back from Portland we stopped by to visit Alice Mellin of OZ on Cousins Island.  Peter was off working giving root canals.  We met them in Conception Island and had Easter dinner with them and the Bahamas gang on 89-foot OZ.  Great fun to see her.

2 July - Newagan, Maine

Colleen - We got a late start leaving Aaron's father's house to set out sailing again.  We dragged our feet a bit as the weather looked ominous.  The yacht club volunteer had called the house in the morning to say it was very windy, and maybe we should consider moving to a less exposed mooring!  The TV forecaster was calling for winds of 25 -30 knots.  I was not looking forward to going back out again, especially softened by days more of land life.  

Aaron's little brother (16 years old, not so little), Brady, decided to come sailing with us for the afternoon, to be picked up by car where ever we stopped for the evening.

The dinghy ride out to the boat was awful.  I sat in front, as did the cats and we got the brunt of the waves splashing into us as we motored into the wind.  My pants were soaked and I had to change.  Half my clean laundry was soaked as well.  The white caps in the harbor and the howl of the wind made the thought of sailing off pretty awful.  

As it ends up, the dinghy ride was the by far the worst of it.  We motored out of the sound (dodging the ubiquitous fishing buoys all the way), and soon were moving with the wind behind us, which reduced the apparent wind quite a bit.  In fact the afternoon was quite a nice sail.  We ran with just the genny up downwind in the sunshine.  It was nice to have Brady along to chat with as we moved through the water.  As the day progressed we got some strong gusts of up to 32 knots which heeled the boat over, but after reducing sail area, we were fine.  

We motored into the incredibly narrow harbor entrance of Newagan around 6 p.m.  Though the size of a thumb nail, it was littered with fishing buoys to the point of almost disbelief.  We were too big for the two moorings offered by the Newagan Inn, so we dropped anchor.  The harbor is sooo tiny and full of moorings and buoys we had a hell of a time squeezing in.  We actually had two fishing buoys under/next to the boat (depending on the wind swing) and were only 2 feet in front of the mooring buoy behind us by the time we had finally set the anchor for good.

Aaron's grandmother, father and his wife Becky joined us for dinner before driving Brady home.  It was a real treat to dinghy in for a nice dinner in the majestic Inn overlooking the harbor.  Newagan is such a unique little nook of the world nestled at the end of a peninsula, it just seemed like a really special place.

3 July - Camden, Maine

Colleen - Well, I guess it would be considered a big day, officially the end of our voyage.  At the risk of disappointing readers, I must admit it all seemed a bit anti-climactic.  We awoke and moved off around 9 am, fortunately managing to avoid picking up a rope in the prop under the conditions.  We had to motor most of the way up to Camden with light winds.  The day was very cold, I had to wear two jackets, which probably wasn't a great advertisement for my new boating life in Maine - hardly what one would envision as "July weather".  The scenery as we headed north was lovely though.  We passed close to romantic looking islands, with classic wind blown farmhouses and lighthouses.  The rugged and vibrant coast was dazzling.

We arrived in Camden harbor around 3:30 pm.  We weren't very organized, and had no where to moor the boat.  The harbor was stuffed with fourth of July visitors and a cruiser rally that was in town!  What bad timing.  Even if we could have a mooring, we weren't prepared to pay the $30/night fee for an outer harbor mooring on our cruising budget.  

We anchored, and I'm convinced we were the only boat in the whole outer (and inner of course) harbor to anchor out of hundreds.  We did find a spot in Sherman's Cove with a nice bite after a few tries.

The weather was gray and a bit lonely.  The dinghy ride into the town dock was pretty long (this time I'm prepared with full foul weather gear on).  Aaron's sister who was visiting from Seattle and her boyfriend came to pick us up, as everyone else was unavailable.  We were lucky they were around actually.  Aaron and I felt a little uneasy about leaving the cats on the boat in the exposed outer harbor at anchor as night came and the weather was so uninviting.  I felt kind of shell shocked and unstable as we drove to his grandmother's house.


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Copyright 2001 All Rights Reserved by Aaron Henderson and Colleen Duggan