Making good on a Father’s Day commitment, Ruth and I took her dad and step-mom sailing today, with a lunch stop at a restaurant in Chesapeake Beach.
Not knowing how the weather would turn out, we took a bit of a gamble on conditions. However, a cold front blew through yesterday and we awoke to temps in the low 60s, low humidity, and gusty conditions. Perfect conditions for a vigorous sail with a numerous crew to handle tiller, sheets, etc.
Temps at 1000 when we started out were in the low 70s, but on the water it always feels cooler. I wore jeans and brought a sweatshirt. Ruth’s step-mom felt just a bit chilly all day. The reason I keep talking about this is because I’m a Florida native. In Florida, temps like this in late June are simply impossible, and I always feel like I’m getting away with something scandalous when we get a summer day like this here in Maryland.
I just unrolled the headsail, as it was pretty breezy. With wives on board, I didn’t want to dip the rail and make people uncomfortable, although we could have easily stood up to reefed main and partial headsail without discomfort (perhaps the truth here is that I was lazy!)
Two hours of off-the-wind sailing brought us to the marker off Chesapeake Beach and we headed in for lunch. The channel proved to be shallow – at the end of a dredge cycle, is what the marina guy told me, so we were seeing 4.5 to 5.5-foot depths as we motored through the markers. After lunch, on the way back out to the bay the tide was a foot lower and we actually touched bottom once.
Lunch was fantastic. We all had variants of seafood offerings. Afterward, we climbed back down into the boat (farther now than we had climbed up upon arrival), and headed back out to the bay. The wind had strengthened a bit since the morning, and with just the headsail out we couldn’t effectively make much progress to weather. So after achieving enough distance off shore, to weather Holland Point, we turned back to the north and crashed/bashed our way under power for the next hour and a quarter, arriving back at our marina by 1600.
Having taken a lot of spray over the bow, and sometimes into the cockpit, I gave the boat a good fresh-water rinse before putting her away.