Trip Log - Pg 3

September 29, 2011 to October 02, 2011

 September 29, 2011

Weather: Cloudy – chance of thunderstorms – wind gusting to 50phm with hail ¼ inches round.

By 1145hrs we left the fuel dock full of diesel – we were officially under way and heading south once again – yeehoo!!

On the Hudson we were advised to monitor channel 13 – it’s the tug boat channel. That way, if a tug needs to communicate with us – like to ask us to get out of its way – we can. While underway we heard this beeping noise. At first we thought it was the engine…it wasn’t (thank goodness!!), then we noticed it was coming from the VHF radio. It was the weather warning feature on our VHF radio – we’ve just haven’t heard it yet. I moved to the weather station where it advised of this big storm coming up the Hudson River – damaging winds, hail and lots of rain. Flood warning for the river and adjoining creeks…great – our first storm!! Steve and I made a plan in case we needed to act quick to remove canvas, take sails down or anything else that could get damaged.  Steve ensured everything was secure on deck and I made sure all the windows and hatches we locked tight inside. We put on our heavy rain gear and waited….

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Storm in the distance 

We could see the storm up ahead but it seemed to be breaking up and moving away. So, we removed our jackets and relaxed a bit. I started reading my cookbook for supper ideas and continued on our way.

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Within the hour the weather went from calm…

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…to crazy! As soon as we came around the bend, we could see the wall of water. We zipped up our jackets and braced ourselves. Within a few minutes the visibility…well wasn’t. We couldn’t see very much at all - maybe 10 feet in front of us.

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Steve being an excellent captain!

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Little visibility 

Steve navigated by chartplotter and I kept my eyes open for boats. Within 30 minutes or so, the visibility was better but we were soaked and in for rain for the rest of the afternoon.

The debris in the water is amazing – have I mentioned that yet?!?! ;) Steve has been dodging logs, propane tanks, patches of trees and even barrels on the Hudson today.

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Hudson debris

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One of the many Lighthouses decorating the Hudson River

We anchored around 1800hrs in Saugerties, up the Esopus Creek as recommended by Skipper Bob – an anchorage guide for good places to be on the hook along the Hudson River and Intracoastal Waterway. This anchorage is rated high for wind protection.  The guide advised us to head up the creek towards the back end. As we were slowly motoring in, a man shouted from shore “I wouldn’t do that if I were you.” I glanced back to be sure he was talking to us. He was, so I asked why? He said the water was rushing in too quickly from the flooding to be at anchor in that spot. We heeded his advice, turned around and anchored closer to the homes. This is a very narrow creek with nice homes, a coast guard station and two marinas lining either side. It’s a beautiful area but the water is very brown from the flooding – you can actually see plumes of dirt rising from under the water! The water line is almost at the edge of the homes and the current is very strong. We will be keeping a close eye on our anchor tonight.

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Entrance to Esopus Creek – you can sees some evidence of flooding

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Esopus Creek

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Anchorage in Esopus Creek

Carrot and lentil stew for supper. We opened our first bottle of red wine – kindly given to us by Gordon Webster – thanks Gordon it was delicious!!! We were in bed by 2045hrs!!

September 30, 2011

Up at midnight…..0130hrs…..0330hrs…0500hrs….then 0730hrs…..A horrible night’s sleep!! This turned out to be an uncomfortable  anchorage so I made note of it in the guide to never anchor here if there is any flooding in the area – good protection from the wind though.

I will try to explain our night….the current is running around 3.5 to 4kts!!!! The current is not only moving water but whatever debris is in it as well. I know I’ve talked a little about the kind of debris in the water so you can imagine. In the boat it sort of sounded like a bathtub draining of water...you know the swirling sound the drain makes, pair that up with sporadic knocking on the hull by logs and tree branches drifting by. Not only does it knock on the hull but it drags along side of the boat until it frees itself on the other end. F-R-E-A-K-Y!!! It wasn’t causing any damage but at times it would hit loud enough to startle us awake and compelled one of us to get up to make sure we were not dragging anchor or there wasn’t a huge tree caught in our anchor line. Craziness!!

A note on the flooding: The flooding on the Hudson and surrounding area is imminent with every rain fall now. It has rained so much this year that the ground is so saturated with water that it cannot absorb any more. As a result, when it rains, the creeks and rivers flood immediately and the risk of flash floods becomes very high. We hear the warnings continuously on the VHF.  I would hate to be a waterfront home owner in the area this year – I would be biting my nails every time the clouds rolled in.

We got the heck out of there by 0830hrs in an effort to take advantage of the ebbing tide. As the tide recedes, we can gain an extra knot or two of speed – we were able to go down the river at 7.7kts until the tides changed around 1100hrs…our speed dropped to 4.5-5kts. Tides are foreign to Steve and I. We do not have to worry about them in the Ottawa River. So, we are a little nervous about getting our timing right and reading the tables accurately. So far so good but I will review my notes on the subject in my navigation manual.

Steve seems to be taking all this in stride, I however am feeling exhausted today and looking forward to days of rest further south. A cold front is moving in and we can anticipate temperatures dropping to single digits by tomorrow and throughout the weekend so – we gotta move!

It is hilly and lush along the banks of the Hudson River and we see many mansions and marinas along way interspersed with factories, camping facilities and beautiful cottages. The sun poked its head out today making it slightly more comfortable than yesterday. I did break out the hats and mitts again though….I guess they will be out for a few more days.

 

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Mansion

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Industry

Scenery along the way…

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Lighthouse – built in 1871

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Swans!!

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Scenery along the Hudson River 

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Bannerman Castle

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Bannerman Castle….with beautiful sailboat

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Beautiful sailboat….a little closer J

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More scenery...

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More scenery....

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Newburgh

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West Point Military College– lots of money here!!

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Check out the two parachutes at the top of the picture!!! A helicopter dropped them over the school.

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As George W Bush would say – a Nukular Power Plant in Peekskill NY

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Drying out my shoes from yesterday’s rain

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The Navigatrix hard at work! 

We are hoping to get to an anchorage tonight that is close to some services. We could use a hardware and grocery store to get a few supplies before we get to New York City. In New York, we will wait for a good weather window to head out to sea and make our way down to Norfolk, Virginia – big jump.

Around 1820hrs as we were approaching our anchorage we were boarded by the Westchester Police – first time ever boarded by police…the Coast Guard came aboard for a quick inspection in Rouses Point at the border! It was a good drill because you just never know if you have all the right paperwork and safety gear on board. One officer took our passports and registration information while we chit-chatted about the weather and our jobs with the other officer who really was evaluating our safety gear. We passed with flying colours J Both officers were friendly and professional chatting about having attended training sessions with RCMP and OPP officers in Syracuse NY.  The whole experience took about 20 minutes. We were finally anchored in Nyack just north of the Tappan Zee Bridge around 1900hrs. We are just outside a mooring field in front of Julius Peterson Boatyard.  We are going to blow up the dinghy tomorrow morning and motor to shore to do some provisioning and get to a hardware store –yay!!!

 

October 01, 2011

 

Weather – cloudy 70% chance of rain – winds NE 5 to 10 MHP (feels much stronger)

 

This is a very rocky anchorage – it’s not a protected bay at all. When the wind picks up in combination with the tide and current it is not a pleasurable experience.

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Julius Peterson Boat Yard – View from Diana at anchor

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Big houses – view from anchorage

 

It is pretty here and there is a sail boat race going on. Many sailors out taking advantage of these winds while Steve and I rock around with Diana.

 

We attempted to blow up the dinghy today only to discover a puncture in one of the pontoons. Out came the patch kit and Steve went to work patching the dinghy. This is all a little reminiscent of our 2006 maiden voyage from Florida – same two problems held us back (water pump and dinghy). It’s very difficult to do anything with this constant motion but we are managing. Steve is up-beat as always but not me, I’m feeling a little discouraged and growing very tired of sleepless nights and bouncing around worrying – I’m finding it difficult to adapt but confident that I will...all part of the adventure right?!?!

 

While Steve was fixing the dinghy, I was starving as usual and began making bread and cabbage soup J My mood started to lift once I started cooking. Turns out I can get through anything if I have a full belly ;) If I’m hungry and under stress forget it – just shoot me, but give me a sandwich and I’m happy as a clam!

 

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Steve on deck patching the dinghy

 

The VHF weather keeps telling us the winds are 5-10MPH but they feel much stronger and really gusty too. Another sailboat came into the bay tonight and snugged up closer to shore…we should have done the same but it’s too late. Night is falling and it would be foolish to try and pull up anchor in this.

 

We aren’t scared, more worried about causing unnecessary damage to the boat. We made a plan to get out of this anchorage as soon as the wind settles and head back to Haverstraw to finish the dinghy and provision.

 

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Bad weather in anchorage

 

By 2000hrs the wind was howling!!! We secured the dinghy on deck the decided to sleep on the settees to keep an eye on our anchor in case it let go and we needed to act fast. The wind SCREAMS through the rigging with every gust and the boat is bouncing like a cork. We are both growing very tired of this motion.  Still the VHF weather report says the wind in the area is 5-10 MHP – my ASS it is!!

October 2, 2011  

Another horrible night!! We got through it with only minor chaffing to the anchor rode (no structural damage to the line – thank goodness!). The waves were causing us to bounce so much the rode had jumped out of the roller and rubbed on the toerail - minor.

We woke up this morning to very little rolling – which meant we slept – yay!! It’s cool mid 50’s but calm.

The sailboat that had anchored closest to shore left first thing this morning. It looked so beautiful with the mist coming over the hills I had to take a picture.

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Pretty boat in same anchorage

After a cup of hot tea we tended to the dinghy. Steve’s repair held really well. Once the dinghy was in the water and floating happily, Steve used our new crane to attach the motor. It started up after only a few tries and off Steve went to test it out.

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It works!!!

Once he returned, we made ourselves look presentable and prepared to go to land J Since the weather was nice, we decided not to go to Haverstraw but head to the Julius Peterson Boat Yard to dock the dinghy and head into town for some provisions.  What a difference a day makes!!

Steve and I love boat yards! There are always lots of neat things to look at like boat lifts, cranes, and of course lots of boats. We met the owner Nick, who was a young guy probably late 20’s early 30’s. He and his dad bought the yard two years ago. They make their living building marinas so this place was a good project for the two of them. Nick is a welder and does whatever needs fixing – smart guy with many talents. They have a staff of 13 and are currently renovating the place. They are building a new shop where they can work on 70 foot boats. They built storage racks for motors boats and renovated the docking area. He said they will fix anything, motors, stainless, welding, anything! The place should be complete within two years.  This is definitely on our list for our return in 2012.

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Julius Peterson Boat Yard – view from land – new boat racks

 

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One of the boats stored there – My! What big teeth you have!!

Nick told us to walk up the hill and hang a left on Broadway (J he! he!) and we should find shops, restaurants and whatever store we needed. Boy was he right!

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The Nyack seems to be a very rich area – the houses are big, beautiful and well maintained.

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Some of the many beautiful houses along North Broadway

 

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My favorite – it has three decks besides the one on the main floor. I can imagine myself sipping hot tea from the back top deck overlooking the Hudson River.  Dan (Steve’s brother), this is the house for you – think of the office you could have in the turret!! It’s huge – I’ll share ;)

We found a hardware store where we picked up some things – most importantly, GLOVES for Steve. We ate at a restaurant called Johnny Cakes – YUM!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Again – happiness for Manda!! We both ate like pigs for 26$!! We did groceries – lots of fresh veggies then headed back to the marina to get ice.

We headed back to the boat with a full dinghy and I couldn’t resist taking a picture of Diana – she’s beautiful.

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We unloaded, sorted and stored all of our stuff and around 1400hrs we pulled up anchor and off we went to New York City!

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Fresh Veggies – full baskets – happiness is!!

 

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New York City – coming under the George Washington Bridge. I swear I could hear the theme song to Sex and the City ;)

We got hit with a squall coming in but it passed quickly and we able to anchor safely around 1700hrs on the Jersey side, north of the George Washington Bridge.

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View from our anchorage – there is just something about NYC that gets me excited!!

An early night, with left over cabbage soup and bread for supper – oh and we were able to get an Internet connection – we may never leave!