We set out from Fishing Bay Harbor in the rain. 1/4 mile visibility with winds south at about 10 mph. Rew went below and sweetly smiled at me through the top-most swashboard gap. I looked like this:
But after 45 minutes, the sky began to clear. The rain stopped. I took off the rain suit. Rew cautiously emerged from below. The rest of the day got progressively better, and the end was perfect.
We anchored for the night in the Great Wicomico River. I got the anchor to set on the third try – we moved twice to different places hoping for river bottom consistency in which our anchor would hold. Finally, we wound up here.
We traveled 31.5 nm on this day.
I’ve been curious regarding fuel usage, so this fill-up at Fishing Bay provided me the opportunity to assess it. It worked out to be about 2.72 hours per gallon of fuel. That’s about .37 gallons of fuel per hour, or more roughly 15 nautical miles (nm) per gallon. Or 17.2 statute miles per gallon. I’ve owned a number of cars that didn’t do that well.
In 7 days’ time we also ran through 50 gallons of water (10 of which were drinking water). We didn’t skimp, or consciously try to economize any more than we usually do. However, for four of those days we were showering at the marina, so that affects the numbers a fair amount.
Our next day was Great Wicomico to Solomon’s Island – a run of 44 nm. It was another calm day of beautiful weather. We even got to sail for a while until the wind fell off so gentle that we couldn’t make enough miles to the next anchorage.
Lot’s of commercial traffic on the bay this day.
Here’s a view of how the 1 percent live. This image is from the entrance of the Paxtuxent River. Beautiful view, and beautiful homes.
We anchored again in Mill Creek, but in a different cove. It was warm and we used our sun screens (made from an old sail) attached to the bimini, and set up our wind scoop for the first time. Rew made this for Christmas last winter.
The next morning began our final day on the boat, and after 10 days of being away from home, we were ready to get there. Another 34 nm completed the trip.
10 days away. 6 days moving on the water. About 230 nm traveled, including our detour to Tangier Island. A good, safe trip, and a great way to gauge our tolerance for long stretches of time on board. We need to make a few changes on the boat to make life more livable.
First, I need to convert the hanging locker to shelving. As a closet, it wastes a gigantic amount of stowage for a few hanging things. These can be folded and stowed on one shelf. The other shelves can hold our clothing. Clothing stowage is a major issue – we typically use gym bags on board for clothing, but they have to be put somewhere, and that somewhere is always in the way. What will make life tolerable for longer periods is not having to move an item to access a locker or find another item. Second, we need designed stowage for items that fit in the quarterberth. This includes swashboards, dinghy gear, and folding cockpit seats. Third, we need stowage for small items and galley utensils. Small stuff like the VHF extension speaker, binoculars, keys, GPS, etc.. Finally, we need reading lights in the V-berth. We have one on the port side, and it is even ineffective for reading on the port side! All of these little changes will make a notable improvement in the quality of life on board.
We also confirmed that our changes in galley arrangements work well – the new stove and it’s move to the port side was perfect. Moving all the tools to port balanced out the starboard list to even-keel, and opened up lockers on the starboard side for food stowage. The sun screens made at the end of the cruising season last year proved very effective, as did the wind scoop for the forehatch.