Overnight Camping off Nahant

We boarded Saoirse late afternoon for a quick sail to Short Beach Cove, off Nahant. On board was your typical cast of characters – well seasoned Captain – King – Uncle Dan McMackin, Chief engineer and deck master Peter Barba, newly seasoned offshore sailor Lisa Mogan O’ Keefe , and newbies Michele Lawlor and Laura Poulin. Our excitement was short lived as we headed into some serious 4 to 6 foot crashing waves. See US Coast guard drawing below. After a grueling half hour or so,  we made it to our semi-protected anchorage. We rafted up with The Pearl, friends from the Dory Club, for a nice meal. Exhausted with our sail, we sat back and enjoyed some BVI painkillers before firing up the grill.  Dinner was a pot luck and included shrimp, potstickers,  Kobe beef sliders, chicken and assorted salads.  Leaslie from the Pearl finished it off with a fabulous chocolate zucchini cake. Yes we eat well on Saoirse. While the fare was good, The seasoned blue water sailors clamored  for the typical offshore fare of Spamboat (as pictured below).  All this and not an olive to be found! We would have flown our drone, had it not been confiscated on the trumped up peeping Tom charges. So our photo array is limited. After the filling meal aboard the Pearl we returned to Saoirse for a late night dance party that rivaled Studio 54. We capped the night with a bedtime story from Uncle Dan.

Dawn came early, and no one thought to bring the Captain breakfast in bed though it was much deserved from the maelstom that he sailed through the day before. We enjoy a great breakfast of sticky buns, fruit, and Linda’s homemade pizzele  cookies before pulling up anchor to head home.

Although our trip took 38 minutes from mooring to Anchorage, our onboard mathematicians projected our daily ETMAL at 189.7.

Oh wait, I think we have the wrong blog….

We miss sailing on Tioga with her Captain and crewman all.

The journey home is never a direct route, it is, in fact, always circuitous, and somewhere along the way, we discover that the journey is more significant than the destination. And that the people we meet along the way, will be the traveling companions of our memories forever.

Tioga Now lies on the hard for a winter nap, and her Captain and crew await the next exciting adventure!


A day at the Spa

What else to do on a lazy Sunday on Tioga: lets go to the spa!
A spa day was hardly expected as we had experienced a cold night that felt like being stuck on a New England chair lift. But the morning weather was incredible, a gorgeous sunrise followed by clear skies, warm sun, and friendly seas.

While Captain Philip and Ulf gave Tioga some TLC reassembling a stuck winch, Ledyard, becoming aware of B.O. (Boat odor), booked the first treatment of the day — the early morning bucket shower special. Just like in ancient times, taking a bath on Tioga is a public event, where spectators have more fun watching then the bather does bathing.

Ledyard, fearful that this was a hazing event, was a good sport and dove right in, putting on quite the show. After showers were complete, we dried ourselves in the sun by the infinity pool. Once Ulf had freshened up, he joined the ladies for a pedicure in hot pink. – proof attached.

After our morning at the spa, chef Amy served yet another fabulous south beach diet infused lunch (salmon and shrimp on salad). Then the crew took their siesta on the lido deck for some consumption of vitamin C and pina coladas. Unfortunately, senior citizen yoga was cancelled due to building winds.

As the day closes we are running well on a course of 120 in 15 kt breeze and an ETMAL of 142 miles in the past 24 hours.

Another great day on the water…all is well on Tioga!

[catfegory 2019, NL2IRL, NEWFOUNDLAND, Ireland ]

Cruising top 10

As a southerly breeze pushed us along the rum line, we began to ponder the top ten similarities and differences between a Disney cruise and a Tioga Cruise.

1. All you can eat. Disney: Yes; Tiago: Yes
2. Dining daily with the captain: Disney: No; Tioga:Yes
3. Pee pee in the pool: Disney: Yes; Tioga: Yes
4. Chips on board. Disney: Yes (poker) Tioga: Yes (Pringles)
5. Dancing dolphins: Disney: Yes (Lido deck); Tioga: Yes (playing in our wake for hours) 6. Showers: Disney: Yes (hot, private); Tiago: Yes (cold on deck from a bucket) 7. Daily miles traveled: Disney: 450 miles; Tiago: 156 miles 8. Carbon footprint: Disney: Bigfoot; Tiago: little feet
9. Customer Satisfaction Survey: Tioga 100%; Disney?
10. On deck yoga: Disney: Yes; Tioga: Yes

All is well on Tioga. A very happy and healthy crew enjoying our time on the water!

[catfegory 2019, NL2IRL, NEWFOUNDLAND ]

Crew Change

The crew woke to partly cloudy skies. The slip at the Royal Nova Scotia Yacht Squadron (RNSYS) proved to be very comfortable with little motion. Doug and Peter made coffee and headed to the club patio to relax. John prepared another great breakfast of fruit salad and french toast.

John, Doug and Peter headed to the pool for a swim. Peter phoned home to wish his mom a happy birthday. At about 2 the new crew arrived – Lisa, Steve and the infamous “ Uncle Dan”.

Tioga was fully loaded with the extra crew and all the extra gear – bags and sails filled the foredeck. The joint crew settled in for a midday meal of rice and tropical chicken curry.

The repaired gennaker arrived and Doug, Lisa, and Steve set to work on replacing the repaired sail with the old one in the sock. Philip, John and Dan were working on the windlass which when tested did not work. After voltage readings, jumper wires, and much discussion, a simple wrap of a hammer, suggested by Peter, brought the windlass back to life.

Jim, a friend of Bob, who gifted the yellow gennaker with the paws to Tioga, stopped by to say hello. He generously offered to take us to the grocery store to pick up a few last minute perishable items for the next leg. We only needed a few items since Dan did an outstanding job supplying Tioga prior to leaving Nahant – including enough fruit cups to supply the 10,000 dorys built by Sydney Mahaney.

Jim joined us for drinks on the patio then departed for home. The crew ordered dinner and enjoyed the peaceful beauty of the Harbor. The outbound crew remembering the great sail and the inbound crew contemplating the the cold, wet, and scary days to come.

Peter was able to obtain a burgee from the RNSYS to be displayed in the Nahant Dory Club. Captain Philip checked the online iceberg reports – it looked like only one iceberg left – hoping to get there just as it shrinks down to a cube to add to a fresh gin and tonic.

The inbound crew began to settle in as the outbound crew packed their gear for the trip home. We were relaxing together telling funny stories.

One of the best things about these crew changes is the relating of past stories and the laughter.

As the blog is written Doug is assembling a voodoo like doll of Sydney which will become a mascot for Tioga, joining the kalachakra seeds and the jar of F@#&$%* olives as good luck charms for Tioga. With this crew we need all the luck we can get.

Marblehead to Halifax Race

This Sunday the offshore Race to Halifax (in Nova Scotia, Canada) started in Marblehead, MA. We got a group of friends together and sailed to see the start.
Wind and weather were perfect and we enjoyed watching the long line of boats (app 80) under spinnaker slowly disappear behind the horizon.
A short swim for the boys, a nice lunch, a seal and a whale rounded off another perfect day on the ocean.

We want more of those!


All hands on deck

As the sun begins its ascent under puffy clouds and calmer blue water, Ellen joins the captain’s watch with coffee in hand. All is good, peaceful and calm until we hear “pop” and realize the lashing on the genoa exploded.

The captain quickly assessed the damage and decisively determines the sail must be replaced and quickly assembles the sleeping crew from down below. Like a good pirate, Roger quickly removes not one, but two eye patches as he scrambles to the top deck preparation for the emergency sail amputation and replacement at sea. As the crew rushes to the bow, Ellen holds the course steady and prevents a monster, rogue wave from crashing and clearing the deck.

As Captain Philip moves to the foredeck with pliers between his teeth to disengage the suffering genoa, Roger, Doug and Ulf prepare for battle as they wrestle the wounded genoa as if it were a great white shark

As the crew works feverishly to replace the sail, bare breastedly Roger begins hoisting the sail. Voices are barely audible under the thunderous sound as the lazy sheet lashed angrily in the wind. Doug fearlessly risks losing an eye as the lazy sheet tries to extract a pound of his flesh when he steps in front of its wrath to untangle it.

Once the treacherous task is done, high fives all around and happy smiles filled with a feeling of accomplishment — or perhaps just happy not to have been swept off the deck. And then, from the helm, phenonomen is witnessed. Almost immediately, bucket showers abound and the faint smell of clean permeates Tioga. Clean shirts for everyone ! As it is said often here on Tioga, life is good!

[categories Bermuda, ANT2BDA , 2017]

Leaving the Caribbean

The waters in our favorite cove on the backside of Gustavia turned out to be too choppy last night and we decided to anchor on the other side of the main channel in a pretty tight anchorage. In the morning, we were happy that the anchor had not dragged and got organized.
Ulf, Ellen and Roger went to town to go sightseeing and to get a few provisions, while Doug and Philip prepped the boat, dried the gennaker, downloaded weather data etc.
The local Harbormaster paid us a visit and were relieved that he was granting us stay until noon without charge to take care of our “repairs”…
We lifted anchor and had the genoa unfurled by noon under the hot sun and beautiful blue sky.
Quite quickly we got in tune with the swell of the ocean, enjoyed the dark blue water and left St Martin and Anguilla behind.
Ellen, again, worked her magic in the kitchen, the sun set and we started our watch schedule.
Due to the wet sailing conditions we had to close most hatches, turning our sleeping quarters into steam saunas.
As we sail north, we will hopefully find lower temperatures and get a little more sleep.
For now, the best place is in the cockpit with perfect temperatures, some stars and clouds above as well as the waxing moon.

The forecast looks pretty good and we are looking forward to some more prefect sailing days. We have roughly 850nm to go.

[categories 2017, Ant2Bda, Bermuda]