Sunday 13 August 2017 - Written by
Liverpool by river Mersey, Nova Scotia
Not the most idyllic anchorage we have had,,,,
The night was very calm and so is he morning. No wind, rain and dense fog….! We do not see further than 75 meters. Some of us take the compulsory morning swim, we have breakfast and we set off. Early we think but we “lost an hour” due to our being on Canadian time here. 10 o’clock we leave and motor out in he mist.
Most of the day we use the “Penta genua” but we manage to put in somehours of sailing with a wind in from almost dead stern. Genua is enough under such conditions. Eventually we hit Liverpool some 50 miles up. This is a tiny place, 2200 inhabitants but features a River Mersey just like the original. The local paper mill shut down some years ago and just about “killed the place (according to the cab driver). It was a replaces by a junk yard that demolishes ship, so the proud naval vessel welcoming us turned out to have been decommissioned and was being scrapped.. When we land it has finally cleared up and we have a nice evening at the not gigantic Brooklyn Marina and dinner at the “Lance Privateer”, a robust “family-Sunday-dinner” kind of place, where we eat well. Wie about distances we use a taxi back and forth.
Saturday 12 August 2017 - Written by
Shark scrambled in Yarmouth
19 boats brought in 3 sharks each, some weighting up to 400 pounds
Waking up we find a lot of activity in the harbour. We have landed right when the biannual “Shark Scramble” take place. They are expecting 19 big fishing boats that have been out for 48 hours fishing for shark. The weight competition will take place right before our eyes and this is a spectacle when cannot leave.
So we get some additional provisions, Disa gets a Tilly hat (very chic) and at noon it all starts. Some 19 huge fishing boats have clustered around the harbour. These bots are are 8 meters wide, 10-12 meters long with and anterior superstructure and a gigantic aft deck to carry lobster traps (max 280 / boat) in the season and now serves as a platform to spin for shark “for fun”. They off-load 3 sharks each for weighting (300-400 pounds), scientific investigation by researchers down from Halifax and subsequently freezing and processing. Nothing is wasted. It is a spectacle with a crowd, despite a drizzling rain, seafood preparations served in a tent.
At 1330 hours we set of in the rain and fog. No wind, as usual, and we motor around the southern tip of Nova Scotia. With radar and a GPS-plotter is is perfectly safe despite an outlook that is restricted to some 50 meters. As if by magic, the fog ift as the ub sets an there is a spectacular show of light. We wiggle in between two islands connected by a tidal bar and anchor up in 6 meters of water. Perfectly calm and at 2130 we can finally sit down to some fine dining prepared by Disa and Magnus; pasta + tuna stew + wine…..!
Friday 11 August 2017 - Written by
Long jump across Fundy Bay with the world's highet tide, 17 meters!
We had whale encounters a number of times, one VERY close
We wake up to FOG. We cannot see a thing and yet we need to go early and make the long haul over to Nova Scotia. So at 6 o’clock we slowly make our ways through the fog and the lobster traps. Radar is on and eyes are searching the “horizon”….which is 50 meter away….!
Breakfast as we can “on the run”. After a couple of hours the fog burns away and we emerge into clear weather. There is no wind, again, and we motor along victim of the tidal currents into the Bay of Fundy (were max. tidal range is 17 meters !!). Sometimes it is 6 knots, sometimes 8 knots. Finally we see whales, on at least three occasions and we manage to get some good photos. At one time Magnus L, who was steering, jumped up with a scream. There was a huge whale just 5 meters away from the boat. He was so agitated with his GoPro camera that he missed the target…!
At 1800 hours we dock in Yarmouth, on the tip of Nova Scotia. According to instructions we immediately call the “Telephone reporting Site/Marine” in Canada and give boat and personal credentials. 15 minutes later 2 gentlemen from the Canadian Border Control drops by. We get our passports stamped and a voucher that we are in good order in Canada. We can now disembark and have dinner. We go to Rudders immediately above the pier. This proves to be a jolly place with life music, great sea food and a local brewery to allow excesses. We eat well and dance into the night and go to bed well accounted for in every sense.
Thursday 10 August 2017 - Written by
Jonesport, way out on the countryside...
Jonesport iis a very small and forgotten place. No restaurant so we manage on lobster and pizza (?)
It is a quite lovely morning. Magnus L and skipper make it a point to have a morning dip although we are challenging the environment; it is today down 14 degrees…! After breakfast we make amends at the Hinkley Boatyard, whose buoy we snatched last evening. No problem to the tune of a reasonable $US 35. On the high pier (tide is out) we meet a Canadian bunch of motor cyclists, stangers like us and we make friends.
Off eastwards. In bright sunshine but very little wind we try to wind ourselves through the inland waterways as much as possible and eventually reach Jonesport. This is like the end of the world. Idyllic and quaint and somewhat “backwards” was our impression Original characters driving not so original gigantic pick-up trucks. Our inland walk leads us to, of course, the lobster landing where we purchase five “a pound and a quarter”. On we go to the local pizzeria/liquor/snacks store which is one of a kind. We buy medium size pizzas one Peperoni and one Hawaiian pizza. The evening meal is, eh…., also original: Steamed lobster and gratinated lobster stew (in the shell, wonderously prepared by Magnus H) and….pizza (!?) There were a number of empty bottles in the cockpit at nightfall.
Wednesday 9 August 2017 - Written by
Southwest ahrbour on Mt. Dessert Island, both peripheral and the site of Hinkley Yachts
Southwest Harbour, a single lobster landing site and fancy Hinkley Yacht wharf
The good weather from yesterday keeps up and we can have breakfast in the cockpit again. With the long afternoon yesterday we make quick breakfast and get under way. We aim for “Southwest Harbour” on Mt. Desert Island some 50 miles further east. Initially we need to motor for three hours but then the wind picks up from SSW, 8-12 knots. Again we wiggle through winding passages; when going east we make good speed when more northerly we slowly glide through this magnificent sea scape. Up here far to the north (as a Swede would say, Americans say “down east”!) the land is rising and we see high, woody hills inland.
Southwest Harbour turns out to be a bit more developed than Boothbay. Here, the yacht maker “Hinkley” has a factory and there is a large marina at the bottom of the bay. We try to get in contact with harbour “authorities over telephone and VHF to no avail. So, on the advice of a fellow boater we pick up a vacant buoy and hang on to it. Subsequently, skipper calls “US customs and border protection in Houlton, Maine”. We are obliged to report every new location so they can keep track of us…!! (Houlton, Main, we google, sits way up north, inland, exactly on the Canadian border).
The lobster pier” turns out to be a lively shack-like contraption with a crowd (!) We suspect more paper plates and opt for the restaurants a mile down the road. Here we find “Coda”, an elegant place with a strange small, tapas-like menu. We eat some strange but well-tasting dishes although perhaps not the “haut cuisine”.
Long walk and dinghy-ride later we have coffee in the cockpit. Stars in the sky and very calm water.
Tuesday 8 August 2017 - Written by
Tennant Bay, an idling countryside place
A country stroll through meadows and on gravel roads
We wake up to…rain! Well, had to come sometimes. Skipper makes a quick dash to shore and a decent WiFi in full rain gear and then…it is up and away. We motor further east in the rain/fog. Sometimes it is pouring down but most times the precipitation is barely noticeable. We wiggle our way through the Penobscot Bay archipelago that looks very much like the middle namesake outside Stockholm; waterways the wind here, there and everywhere. What is really astonishing is the number of lobster traps. They are absolutely ubiquitous. No matter if you are right in the middle of a harbour entrance, far out at sea or….you always have to watch for them and steer away. Especially when motoring there is the constant risk of wrapping them around the propeller axis. When sailing we tend to disregard them, but every now and then the helmsman can feel them hook up on the rudder. Heading into the wind for a while makes them “fall off”. Here, I am sure, the lobster business is as sacrosanct as what…the moose hunt in Sweden, perhaps.
Early in the afternoon we make it into Tennant Bay, which is a new experience. By now the weather has cleared up and we have a warm and soothing sun shining on us. There is a single lobster catching/harbour master outfit. The rest of the bay is a bucolic landscape with pastures receding down towards the water. We follow a winding country road to the “general store, that sells everything”. After confirming that the only restaurant was closed on Tuesdays (!) we promptly picked up provisions for an evening meal on board: Lobsters as entrees and a couple of huge sirloin steaks for main course. On the walk back to the boat we come across the village bookstore; an ordinary house where four women sit on the porch chatting. We walk inside and find some interesting books in a couple of shelves. The ship’s library is augmented with a paperback volume of Moby Dick and a tale of the puritans landing on Cape Cod (in November 1620 as we have previously encountered). Very appropriate volumes on the boat, on might think.
After having had the compulsory afternoon swim (Magnus L and skipper. It is now 15 degrees Ç) skipper cooks three big lobsters, while Magnus and Disa prepare a most delicious and complete main course (meat + hashbrowns+mushrooms+proper garlic gravy). All this was rinsed down with surprising quantities of wine of different colours and “sparkiness”.
Tuesday 8 August 2017 - Written by
Now into "northern waters" = north of Cape Cod Canal
Provincetown, on the northern tip of Cape Cod was a jolly place. Full of people and a pride festival.
Today we are aiming for Provincetown, at the tip of Cape Cod, wuite some distance away. Also, we need to make it trough Woods Hole at about 0900. So we set of after 0745, after the usual morning routine: swim and breakfast. We motor north up to the cost and hit the narrow, tide-ridden passage of Woods Hole at slack water. Up towards Cape Cod Canal where we are not at lucky. The tide set at 3 knots against us. By keeping very close to the right edge of the canal we can squeeze through and once in Boston Bay we set sails and have a wonderful 4 hour stretch up to Provincetown. Cape Cod is like a coiled clam; a long sweep north-wards which becomes tighter and tighter until it makes a final quick hook and a “pond” with 500 m diameter is created and where Provincetown sits in the bottom, well protected. Conspicuously, an almost 100 meter granite tower commemorates the Puritan arrival on Mayflower in November 1620.
We anchor up deep inside the pond, dinghy down and off to the town we go. Provincetown proves to be extremely touristique, art shops, restaurants and…a gay parade (!!) Millions of people and a quite wonderful feeling. We find a beautiful restaurant and have a good, and very filling, sea food dinner. A wet ride against the wind back to the boat where coffee+ is served in the cock-pit. A great day with ?55 miles logged.
Monday 7 August 2017 - Written by
Boothbay Harbor, a real sumer resort
Nit the fanciest lobster place around....
Another beautiful day down east although the wind is down. We saw the city yesterday so we make quick breakfast after some have used the “harbour facilities”. A proper shower/shave does have plus value.
It is a motoring day and we move through a seascape of the greatest beauty. Much like the middle archipelago of Stockholm. A multitude of wooden islands always with fancy houses on them. All, of course, private and no trespassing allowed…
The chart appears dead correct and we have no problems passing through also quite narrow passages.
Today we aim for Boothbay harbour which turns out to be a resort with marinas, hotels and a lot of buoys. We make contact with Tugboat Marina and they have a proper buoy for a heavy boat. We get the coordinates (lat+long with three decimal digits !!) and we find it right away. The “mall”, Hannafort grocery store, is quite huge and not all that far away….within walking distance. We make “good provisions” to the point where we have to haul a cab for the return fare.
In the evening we heed advice from the marina and walk to th other side if the bay where a (not so) cheap “Lobster Shack” gets our business. Good food but served on paper ware at pretty shabby tables. We were perhaps not so impressed but the evening is gorgeous and we enjoy ourselves……as usual.
Sunday 6 August 2017 - Written by
Into the real Maine, deep down east
Portland is a big harbor with many assets
Waking up to a gorgeous morning and make quick breakfast. We need to make some distance today. At 0900 we leave our jetty and find ourselves, once again, unfavourable tidal water (not as bad as yesterday, thought). The wind is up so we hoist full sails and set out in a reach, wind from the NE. Eventually we change to the cutter jib and even furl the main a bit. The sailing is absolutely great with good wind and crystal clear skies.
We go for Portland, 35 miles further “down east”. Portland is a big city” with extremely busy harbour/pleasure boat marinas where the music flows. We choose a “slip” today and tie up alongside at “Portland Yacht Service”. It is pretty early afternoon and we roam the city for provisions, with no good success. As usual in the bigger places, the “mall” lies miles away. One has to have a car.
Barbro has found our dinner restaurant, Scales, a great big old ware house turned into a pretty fancy eating place. Again various kinds of seafood, skipper keeps a strict lobster diet…
Saturday 5 August 2017 - Written by
Lobster haven i Porthmouth and elsewhere
In tese waters, lobster traps are EVERWHERE! The cruise is a constant slalom track not to run over them..... and catch them on tyhe rudder
We wake up in fog !!! Pea soup !! Does not prevent a morning swim in colder water…! Breakfast ad we go ashore to stock up on some items. We find some but no beer. Rockport is a “dry place”. Any kind of alcohol is only sold about 5 miles out of town…! We see the painter David Arsenault again and skipper buys a work with his David-Hopper-like-clear-colours-without-life motive. A reminder of the sail trip for times to come….!
We set out in the fog and aim for Portsmouth, 25 miles north where Magnus and Disa will join us. No wind so we motor along with the radar set at close range. There are millions of lobster cage buoys that we slalom past. Inside the little group of islands called Isles of Shoals and into the river where Portsmous is a couple of miles up. The tide, 3-4 knots at places, is against us and on going alongside Prescott Park Marina we “run some risks” before we end up nicely tied up after manoeuvres that were elegant but risky.
We inspect the town and have mussles at Smuttynose Brewery (smuttynose turns out to be a species of seal). By now the fog has lifted and the Saturday afternoon turns out
At about 2300, Disa and Magnus Holme make grand entré after having suffered a Trump die-hard in the cab (driver). We immediately transferred them down into the “blue saloon” (the lower main cabin of the boat) where a complete lobster dinner was prepared. This was duly digested with appropriate complementary liquid and solid “stuff”.