A Sunday Morning Sail

The oppressive humidity and heat was pushed away last night. The cooler weather trailed behind a line of thunderstorms that passed through around bedtime. The high today was in the mid-seventies. It would have been a perfect day to try to catch up on projects around the house. But what is the fun of that when Long Island Sound beckons.

I was invited to join Kevin Farrar (of Farrar Sails – where Will works) to join him sailing on a customer’s boat out of Westbrook. They were doing sea trials on with a new mainsail that he had recently built for the boat. The day started uneventful as we motored out from the marina. However, the engine stopped and wouldn’t restart once we were in the sound. We completed a shake-down cruise with the new sail and then headed back to the marina. Getting a tow was going to be pricey, so we opted to sail all the way up the channel to his slip. Luckily the wind was in our favor. If we had waited another 15-20 minutes the wind would have picked up in a direction that would have pushed us off the dock, making the return much more difficult.

We returned in time for me to be home for a late lunch (and then start house chores).

The view from the cockpit as we sail into Long Island Sound

Re-visiting Mystic Seaport

Today, Elsa and Susanna went to New York City for the day, so it left Izzy and me to find something to do on this hot and humid day. This morning we visited Mystic Seaport. It has been a while since Izzy and I visited Mystic Seaport and it isn’t her favorite place. However, Connecticut is offering free entry to a bunch of museums for kids with an accompanying adult, so we decided to make it a morning.

We walked around a bit, and Izzy wanted to watch one of the short shows that the museum staff puts on. She volunteered to go up on stage and help out, and even volunteered me to join her for part of it. This afternoon we will go see Elemental at the movies.

Izzy on stage at Mystic Seaport.
Steering the Charles W. Morgan at the Mystic Seaport
Hiding in a barrel at the cooperage at the Mystic Seaport.

Two more days on the water.

Yesterday, Ben, Izzy and I went to Long Pond in Ledyard to get out of the heat. Izzy spent most of the time swimming!

Ben and Izzy hanging out on Long Pond.

This morning, Will, Elsa (who is visiting us for part of the summer), Izzy and I took two boards and Hoagie and headed to Amos Lake in Preston. Another lake that was perfect for swimming. On the way out we saw a small eastern painted turtle heading to the water. After a quick picture, Will returned helped it on its journey to the lake edge.

Will paddling on Amos Lake, with Izzy and Elsa in the background.
Izzy checking out the eastern painted turtle.

Paddling Long Pond

The afternoon temperatures in Connecticut crept into the lower 90s today. The heat with little breeze and high humidity made for an overall unpleasant day to be outside. At least outside not in the water. We loaded up the car and took the paddle boards to Long Pond. Susanna, Izzy and Hoagie joined me for the afternoon.

The lake was surprisingly warm, with little traffic and an empty launch and parking lot. It was probably the nicest lake we have visited since getting the boards. Then again, we haven’t had the boards for a full season yet.

We all enjoyed the swim, or at least all the humans enjoyed the swim. Hoagie’s dip wasn’t voluntary, but was needed to cool him off.

Hoagie, Me, Isabella.

Hoagie (and a few of Izzy’s toys that came along for the trip).
Izzy swimming in the distance.

More boating time (sailing, swimming, and paddle boarding)

Last week Will and I got the Blue Jay ready for the water. The last part needed was the gooseneck, which I picked up from Kevin on Friday (after picking up Izzy from camp).

Yesterday, the whole family made the drive to Pettipaug after lunch. We towed the new sailboat down.We setup the paddle boards and Will setup the boat. Will decided to start it easy on the first day out on the new boat. He only rigged the mainstail, and went out by himself for an hour or two.

Will heading out on the Blue Jay sailboat we are using for the summer.

While Will was out testing out the new boat, the rest of us rotated through the the two paddle boards. Will’s board is huge, and a real pain to paddle, but it is a good swimming platform for Izzy. I spent most of the afternoon just sitting on the big board in shallow water while Izzy swam around and played in the mud and Hoagie paced around on the board while Ben and Susanna took turns on the smaller board.

Izzy, Hoagie and I enjoying the water south of the Pettipaug docks.

We started packing up late afternoon. I watched a pair of sailors pull out a MC Scow using the lift, which seemed like a much easier way than trying to get up the ramp at low tide. We don’t have a harness to lift the Blue Jay, so I asked one of the MC Scow crew if we could use their harness. He said it wouldn’t work, but helped me find a harness for the Blue Jay in one of the sheds on site and helped us lift the boat. That wound up being much much easier than loading the trailer on the ramp. Will is going to try to get a harness made this week at work.

We are planning on taking the Wildfire dinghy home and fixing the crack in the hull, but part of me wonders if the lift would handle that boat and make using it reasonable. Oh well, that will have to wait until next season. Hopefully the weather will support towing the Wildfire home this week.

The kids all playing on the water. Ben trying to stand up on the paddle board, Izzy swimming at the boat launch, and Will rigging up the Blue Jay.

I know Izzy had a great day swimming in the water (you can read her version on her blog), and the rest of us had a good time on the water. I’m not sure how Hoagie feels about the paddle boards though and he doesn’t yet enjoy swimming.