We headed home from Vinalhaven, Maine just as the sun was setting, around 7:30pm. We sorted everything for offshore sailing and were off!
Brandon took the first watch from 2000-0000, I had no trouble going down for a solid 4 hours and with a little bit of coffee was able to give him an equal 4 hours of sleep by standing watch from 0000-0400. I am so glad we left when we did, we got to sail through the night in flat water and a nice 15 knot southwesterly. An upwind starboard tack set us right for the entrance to the Cape Cod Canal.
There were a million stars out and a shooting star every few minutes. Brandon did a jib change around 2130 to put up the bigger jib (a 155) which I groggily helped with but he said, just before he did he swears he heard a whales’s blowhole spout off close by.
The trip to the Canal was mostly motoring. While Brandon slept in the morning, I managed to get the spinnaker pole up on the starboard side so we could at least go dead-downwind with the wind behind us, allowing us to head in the right direction. I should have set up the GoPro for that to comically show off how much back and forth I had to do from the bow to the cockpit as I kept getting my safety tether snagged.
The day passed undramatically until we entered the canal at 1230 early on Saturday. We knew this was our last chance to get through the canal before the tide changed fully against us. Brandon filled the fuel from the jerry can of additional 5 gallons before we entered. However, just as we were passing the Coast Guard station and using the becalmed channel to switch back to the smaller job the jib, he was revving up the engine speed when it started to sputter.
We quickly turned and headed into East Boat Basin and landed on the fuel dock. A nice late night security guard asked us if we needed a slip but we said we just needed a few minutes to see what was going on with the engine. In less than 10 minutes, we had everything out of the locker and Brandon had the was inspecting everything. He says that because the engine was fine at low speeds that it was probably a fuel issue. He pulled off the fuel intake hose and found the fuel tank pickup’s filter (which apparently you don’t even need with diesel) was all clogged up.) He removed that off the end and away we went, thanking the security gaurd.
By this point, even just a few minutes make a difference, we started fighting the tide the whole way through. At one point, making just 2 knots over ground. It took us 2 hours to get through the channel. I went down for sleep after we got off the dock and did a sail change.
I came on at 3:30am and the wind was now up! Those 3 or so hours I was on watch, I had the current and about 20+ knots with me getting the boat up to 8 knots frequently – which is sporty for the C&C! By the time I woke up Brandon for the final sprint at 7am, we were out of Buzzard’s Bay and the sun was out.
A little after 9am we were turning the corner at Castle Hill, the skies were grey and it was very much northeaster conditions in Narragansett Bay. We decided to just grab our laundry and devices once we hit the mooring at 1000 and head home for some sleep and food. Come back and deal with the boat tomorrow.
It’s still hard to process this amazing honeymoon adventure. We did so much yet it was still relaxing to just be together away from the world. If you followed along, thank you. Mostly, this was just my way of documenting it all before I forget and sharing the stories with family and friends.
We know how lucky we are to have the opportunity to follow through on this long-held dream of ours. We have always held Maine in a special place in our hearts and now we have fallen even more in love with Vacationland. We can’t wait to plan the next adventure.