Onward’s Cruise Journal 2016
New England Cruise


Updated: 25 June 2016


June 2016


1 Jun 16; Wednesday; Baltimore


2 Jun 16; Thursday; Baltimore

3 Jun 16; Friday; Baltimore
  • The first order of the day was another journey up the mast to replace the VHF connector to the antenna.
  • Once down from the mast it was time for a quick cleanup before heading off to return the rental car. We did our last shopping for fresh foods before collapsing aboard for an early night before our planned morning departure to head up the coast.

4 Jun 16; Saturday; Baltimore to Artificial Island, Delaware Bay

5 Jun 16; Sunday; Artificial Island to Atlantic City

6 Jun 16; Monday; Atlantic City to Manhasset Bay / Port Washington

7 Jun 16; Tuesday; Manhasset Bay / Port Washington
  • Rest
  • VHF
  • Anchor

8 Jun 16; Wednesday; Manhasset Bay / Port Washington

9 Jun 16; Thursday; Manhasset Bay / Port Washington

10 Jun 16; Friday; Manhasset Bay / Port Washington

11 Jun 16; Saturday; Manhasset Bay / Port Washington

12 Jun 16; Sunday; Manhasset Bay / Port Washington

13 Jun 16; Monday; Manhasset Bay / Port Washington

14 Jun 16; Tuesday; Manhasset Bay / Port Washington

15 Jun 16; Wednesday; Manhasset Bay / Port Washington to Black Rock Yacht Club Black Rock Harbor CT
  • We had a leisurely morning before we weighed anchor about 1030. The anchor was really dug in and it took a while to bounce it out of the mud. We put into the Port Washington Yacht Club pier. While I filled the water tanks, Peggy went ashore to se her friend Tom who was having lunch. Tom had been Peggy's mentor when she began racing and she didn't want to miss the opportunity to say hello.
  • We departed PWYC at 1230 and headed across the Sound to Black Rock Harbor just W of Bridgeport Harbor. It was sunny and cool with little wind. We put into the harbor at 1745 and picked up one of the 800 lb guest moorings of the Black Rock Yacht Club. We headed ashore at 1830 via the club launch. Peggy was impressed with how much the club had expanded since her last visit years ago; it is a beautiful facility. The mooring was a bit pricy at $60. The staff were really friendly and there is a beautiful bar. My cousin, Mary Ann, who lives in Westport was able to get away from dinner with a client early and she joined us while we at dinner. I had a wonderful time catching up with her and talking about palling around together in our pre-teen and teen years.
  • The BRYC Fleet Captain stopped by our table to welcome us to the club. He offered to hold the launch as late as we needed but we did not need to take him up on the offer. I woke up from the very quiet night when I heard a Securite call that a tug pushing a stone barge was entering the harbor. I got up to watch him glide by in the dark at 0400.

16 Jun 16; Thursday; Black Rock Harbor CT to Essex CT
  • We dropped the mooring at ~0800 and headed E in the Sound to the Connecticut Rive and Essex. What little wind there was was on the nose. I had a late lunch and that suggested a nap. I fell asleep quite soundly and Peggy had to wake me up as we approached the Old Lyme railroad bridge. Our timing was off by a couple of minutes and that meant we had to cool our heels to wait for a train to pass and the bridge to reopen. It turned into a beautiful afternoon that made the trip of the river very enjoyable.
  • We picked up a mooring at the Essex Yacht Club. The launch fetched us for a trip in to check out the facility and then walk into town to do some shopping. There is a neat toy store there and we were able to get a number of fun things to have on board for the cruise with Kian and Elena.
  • We spent a quiet night aboard.

17 Jun 16; Friday; Essex Yacht Club, Essex CT
  • I took Peggy ashore at 0730 to get picked by Enterprise and the head off to VT for her class reunion. I spent the day doing boat stuff until 1700 when I Ventured over to Pandora where Bob Osborn was hosting a cocktail hour / pot luck to kick off the 2016 SSCA Essex Gam. It was a beautiful sunny evening that enabled almost 30 people to carpet the decks and cockpit. I got to meet new friend and reconnect with a number of old friends. The Ariels came in during the morning and got to have a homecoming on their previous boat now home to Bob and Brenda Osborn. A fine time was had by all.

18 Jun 16; Saturday; Essex Yacht Club, Essex CT
  • I was busy and somehow the morning disappeared. I went ashore at 1100 for the start of the SSCA Gam

19 Jun 16; Sunday; Essex Yacht Club, Essex CT
  • Day two of the Essex Gam .
  • Peggy reappeared about 1700, just in time for cocktails. What timing that woman has. We had a very pleasant dinner at EYC.

20 Jun 16; Monday; Essex Yacht Club, Essex CT
  • The third and final day of the Essex Gam was held at the Connecticut River Museum and presented a number of interesting topics. The discussion of salvage and maritime law made my eyes roll back as did the alert to looking at the fine details of a yacht insurance policy. I've got a lot of homework ahead!!!!
  • I managed to get my application for SSCA Commodore filled out and sent in with the advice of Miles and Laureen on Ariel and Curt and Kathy on Five & Dime.
  • The Gam finished up with a great cocktail hour and potluck supper on the museum's deck. Then a good number headed off to the Griswald Inn for the Monday night sea chanties. Great fun.

21 Jun 16; Tuesday; Essex Yacht Club to Hamburger Cove
  • A strong cold front moved quickly through just before dawn. This is the price we paid for the preceding 4 picture perfect New England summer days.
  • A shitty morning: I had just finished patting myself on the back for getting both heads fixed before the summer cruise activities when, on the next use, the aft head refused to evacuate. The pump-out boat had come by on Saturday so I knew that a full tank wasn't the problem. There was nothing else to do but try the plunger. I found that doing rapid short strokes finally did the trick. Happiness is a working head!
  • After a short recovery time, I was ready to drop the mooring and head about a mile up river to Hamburger Cove. This is a fresh water, almost land-locked inlet with great all around protection. We carried 11 - 12' through the twisty but well marked channel. There are too many moorings to anchor so we picked up an empty mooring.
  • After lunch we ventured toward the head of the harbor where there is a historic bridge. We followed the channel as it wound its way NE and opened into a large bay that had two marinas and the Hamburger Cove Yacht Club. I was surprised to boats as large as Onward there. As we continued up the creek, we passed the last marina and noticed it was a Yamaha dealer. We slowly made it up the narrow creek to the bridge and after peeking through we retraced our steps. Not far below the bridge we heard a loud noise and we obviously ran over something. The engine wasn't affected and no water came in so we continued on.
  • The Yamaha parts manager had all 3 membranes for the fuel pump in stock. Yes! I bought a set. He also showed me the parts schematic drawing for the crankcase and I saw no evidence of a rubber seal of any kind between the cylinders — go figure.
  • Once back at Onward, I was energized so I climbed in Venture with a hand scrubbing pad and a bottle of Sno-bowl, and cleaned the hull on both sides from bow to stern. No more mustache! A good bit of weed along the waterline means that the bottom paint is no longer able to do the job.
  • We ate dinner in the cockpit and enjoyed the evening until the sun set and skeeters made their appearance.

22 Jun 16; Wednesday; Hamburger Cove to West Neck Anchorage; Shelter Island
  • A quiet night led to another beautiful morning. As I hooked Venture into the falls to lift it aboard, I found the source of a strange noise we had heard last evening just after sundown. It came from the stern and sounded like something had bounced off the side of the boat. Apparently, as Onward swung about its mooring, the pickup stick from a nearby mooring got snagged by the outboard. This must have caused the hold-to strap to stretch until it broke. The noise was apparently the part attached to the boat springing back against the stern and then going overboard because i'd neglected to tie it to the stern cleat as I had planned to replace it. This is the second time the rubber shock absorber on the outboard side of the dinghy has failed. It validates my plan to remake the hold-to lines to be two-pieces; one having a continuous, heavier line as back up to a lighter line with the shock absorber.
  • We dropped the mooring at 0815. On the way our of the curvy channel, I got distracted for a moment and steered to put the next green mark to port - a dyslexic mistake. Peggy caught this and while I was correcting we grounded on a mud bar due to the low tide. A session of Chessapeake-Ass-Wiggling popped us off and I finished my second cup of coffee. Soon after we turned S on the river we passed Pandora on its way up river.
  • The Sound was mirror-like due to the center of the low passing over us. We had planned to go to Greenport to see Peggy's friends but they were all out playing elsewhere. So we sailed around the S tip of Shelter Island and up the W side to West Neck anchorage. This is a beautiful harbor formed by a long arching sandpit. The entrance channel is narrow but well marked and presented no problem. Hmmm. After this morning gotta remember green starboard leaving…
  • At 1330, we anchored in the SW corner of the harbor in the designated anchorage in ~12' of sand with only 2 other boats around. After lunch and a nap, we Ventured off to inspect this harbor. We found that it had several long branches with a great deal of coastline. I was surprised at how populated the island was on the W side while the E had seemed to be sparsely populated when I'd anchored in Cockles Harbor. We headed in to SALT the restaurant at the Island Boatshed Marina to cap off a very nice day.

23 Jun 16; Thursday; West Neck Harbor to Greenport
  • The night was quiet and morning presented an overcast sky with a clear line in the sky to the N running almost E-W marking the location of the stationary front promised by the synoptic charts. To the N the clouds were smooth and thin while to the S the clouds were highly textured and thicker. We weighed anchor about 0900. At the entrance we saw a minimum of about 7' at the point due to only 0.5' above MLW. We continued clockwise around shelter Island in calm seas. At Greenport we did our usual dodge around the stern of a ferry then anchored just NE of the breakwater in our usual spot off Gull Pond beach in about 12'.
  • By noon the cloud had mostly burned off. I made another Onward plowman's lunch. I've really come to like this aspect of dieting. About 1400 we headed in and tied up at the town dinghy pier. Peggy's friend Barbara met us in town and we spent a pleasant few hours walking around and shopping in the town which continues to look better each year.
  • After picking up some fresh vegetables, Barbara took us to her home where we had a pleasant visit on her shady deck. She introduced us to an Italian aperitif that she first tried in Italy. It is Aperol, developed by Cinzano in Tuscany in what appears to be a golden era for aperitif invention in the late 19th - early 20th century. It is lightly alcoholic and made from essence bitter orange, and other herbs. It is served chilled with club soda or with prossecco. It has a slightly bitter orange flavor and is very refreshing. We found it Delish! Now we are on the hunt for some to have aboard.
  • We capped the day off with dinner at Captain Billy's where Peggy and I enjoyed an amazing caesar salad with lobster salad - a very civilized way to add protein to a salad. While there was a good deal on fresh lobsters, we decided to save ourselves for 2-lb + lobsters in Maine.

24 Jun 16; Friday; Greenport to Block Island
  • A quiet and still night led to a quiet and still morning with light dew accumulation. The morning developed sunny and cool.
  • We weighed anchor at 0645 and set out for Block Island. There was little boat traffic except for a few fishing boats headed for Montauk Pt but we encountered an incoming submarine and had to alter course to pass well clear of its stern.
  • We entered the Great Salt Pond at ~1200 and were fortunate to find one orange mooring open although there were a good number of open blue moorings. Peggy executed a flawless pickup. We had lunch aboard before heading into town. We were pleasantly surprised to find room at the dinghy dock. We discovered the dock store has really improved its selection too. The day was perfect for a walk into town: sunny, clear, cool, crisp. On the way we passed a yard sale and Peggy couldn't resist stopping. But it was me that found the prize: a brand new small collapsable silicone bowl/pot with lid and steamer. At the liquor store, I was pleaantly surprised to find and purchase a bottle of Aperol so we can now experiment with our aperitifs aboard Onward.
  • While on our visit to shops, I got a call from Miles Cherkasky who had just tied up his tender next to Onward. Apparently we'd passed right by Ariel n our way to the mooring. They invited us to dinner. Nice!
  • While Venturing back to the boat, we passed Exuberant and Peggy exclaimed we know that boat and sure enough it was Pru and Bert whom we'd last seen in the Bahamas. We chatted for a bit and found out we will be in Maine during the same period this summer.
  • We decided to make the Ariels part of our experiment in use of Aperol. We took tumblers, filled 1/4 full with ice, added am orange slice, then ~ 2 oz of Aperol and the same of club soda; then we divided a bottle of prosecco between th 4 glasses. Cool, refreshing, crisp. Delish. A new summer favorite. Since Miles is also dieting, we had a very diet friendly dinner of grilled pork loin and vegetables. After dinner they were in need of a farkle fix and we played the first ever farkle game aboard MY Ariel. The Gods smiled and I won!. This was a nice way to end a completely unexpected and highly enjoyable social evening.

25 Jun 16; Saturday; Block Island to Greenwich Bay
  • A very quiet and peaceful night was terminated for my by a very vivid dream where I was reviewing a research lab and encountered someone who was so incompetent and lackadaisical that I got so upset it brought me fully awake. Hmmm where did that come from…
  • Another gorgeous morning greeted us and we were underway by 0715. As we went down the channel we encountered the Harbormaster and Peggy realized they had not come by to pick up the mooring fee. I flagged him down and he was aware we were on mooring 80 but surprised that he had forgotten to come by for the fee. So, Peggy paid him and he said he was going to write this up because he had never been stopped before to be given money.
  • It was a rolly transit of Block Island Sound with a NE wind on our nose, of course. We passed Point Judith at 0945. We were able sail with the genoa until ~ 1100 when the wind died. We went on to anchor in our usual place off of Godard Park in Greenwich Bay at 1345.
  • East Greenwi

26 Jun 16; Sunday; Greenwich Bay
  • We Ventured in to EGYC and I talked to Matt Voccio the new assistant Steward who took over from Matt Jarbeau who left for a full time position with the Warwick FD.
  • We took Uber over to niece Linda's home where we were early enough to give her a hand to set up the graduation party for son Corey.

27 Jun 16; Monday; Greenwich Bay
  • Recovery day

28 Jun 16; Tuesday; Greenwich Bay
  • SSA

29 Jun 16; Wednesday; Greenwich Bay
  • Oakland Beach
  • diagnosed windlass issue

30 Jun 16; Thursday; Greenwich Bay
  • Diagnosed oil sender problem
  • Rental car