Monday, August 1, 2011

Connecting (or not) in the Salish Sea Pt 1.

August is in full swing! Dervish is moored on Orcas Island, and I am busy working for the rest of the month.  So, I thought I'd write up a run down of 300+ miles and 30 days of July cruising to and through the San Juans. Why so late? Well, I purchased a T-mobile USB broadband widget so I could blog along my journey. The saleswoman and coverage map confirmed that I would have a connection nearly everywhere I planned to travel. In reality, I rarely got a connection and when I did it was slow and inconsistent with few exceptions. At first I was irritated, then I gave up on blogging and gave in to the impulse to "unplug" for awhile. It really is quite refreshing. I recommend it.

The first month of my summer cruise has been sensational. My trip started July 2nd with my sweetie, Shawn and my dear friend, Molly aboard.  She's a musician, actress, writer and sailor, and he's a mechanic, musician, mcgyver-magician and sailor.  With my dream of a boat-traveling troupe of dramanauts alive, we left West Bay, Olympia and headed up Case Inlet toward Jarrell's Cove. When rounded the northern point of Hartstene Island, our lazy, broad reach in 10 knots, turned into 20 on the beam with quite a bit of fetch in narrow Pickering Passage. Before long, we opted to motor into the cove where we anchored for the night and partied with the locals. 


Having a nip of rum aboard s/v Ichiban.



Later Molly chauffeured us about in the dink.


Two days later, we had headed out from Jarrell's Cove on our way to Quartermaster Harbor for the fireworks. Shawn noticed some smoke in the cabin and discovered the exhaust elbow had corroded through on my old Farymann 12hp one-lunger. We stopped off at McMicken Island and Shawn did some macgyver magic with epoxy goo, a mint tin, and some stainless steel wire.  

Not a bad fix, really.
We continued on our way toward the Tacoma Narrows. We were late due to the repair, and hit some current. After fighting it for awhile (too long, I am sure), I concluded the most prudent thing to do was to return to Olympia and get a proper fix on the motor. She was holding up just fine, so we spent the 4th of July watching distant pyrotechnics from anchor off the southern tip of Key Peninsula. 

View from Devil's Head.

Next day at Boston Harbor I got busy looking into getting an exhaust elbow for my ancient motor. I called the dealers, searched the message boards, and finally found a part that could be shipped from Germany for an arm and a leg. Plan B: get it welded. the local shop, Ziegler's could handle it and quoted me $80 and 3-5 days turnaround. Shawn removed the part, and we rushed it right in. Donny took a look at it, asked when I needed it, to which I replied, "well, my boat is anchored at Boston Harbor with no motor and a winds predicted, so, uh... as soon as you can. Please."  He mumbled something and disappeared through a door. Twenty minutes later he brought it out finished and looking beautiful, and charged me under $40.  Now that is good hometown service!

Shawn installed it the next day.