written by Gene
This little lake we are currently calling home seems a lot smaller now. We had our first salt sea cruise over the weekend. Just a quick jaunt SW to Eagle Harbor on Bainbridge Island and back.
The trip over on Saturday was glorious. Many thanks to Amy, for taking Byron to the museum for the day and bring him over on the ferry to meet us and to Derek for joining us as an experienced deckhand and helmsman.
The weather was perfect, blue skies and north wind at 15 knots. We fairly flew over the water, making 6 knots over ground and even 7 for a while, despite a 1-1.5 knot contrary current. Our friends on Gypsy Wind came across from Seattle too and we were able to rendezvous for a little photo shoot.
Just to seal the perfection of the day, we were welcomed to the Salish Sea by 3 big orcas that surfaced several times while crossing our path. Getting pics wasn’t really possible, but it was magical.
Sunday morning we had a lovely breakfast with Alex and Christina aboard Gypsy Wind. After a lovely morning and a walk in town we took a little day sail, out past the approach, into the sound a ways and then back. It was too late in the day to go anywhere without arriving after dark, but it served to give me a warm up on handling Brio by myself.
Monday morning we got a much earlier start and heading back north (after an hour’s detour south showing us that a stop at Blake Island was not realistic during these short November days). The wind was light and variable, the sky overcast and rainy by the evening. But we sailed home, playing with the drifter, not starting the engine until we had nearly reached the Shilshole approach (a narrow channel.)
Back through the locks without incident and under one bridge. We arrived at the second bridge five minutes after it closed to boat traffic for rush hour. After drifting in the canal for two hours (blahhhh! We won’t make that mistake again!), we fired the engine back up and puttered up to the bridge, which sounded its opening precisely at 6pm without our even asking. I think they felt sorry for us, waiting in the drizzle for 2 hours.
Twenty minutes later we had slipped into our berth, neat as you please, tried up, and shut down the engine again (a couple of months ago that manuver inspired sheer terror).
So… Lots of work left to do, but this little lake is definitely feeling a bit cramped now.