Wednesday July 24, 2013
0700 hours Central Daylight Time
Pride dropped anchor last evening in the “good anchorage…mud bottom” of the eastern anchorage between Rocky and South Twin Islands of the Apostle Islands National Park in Wisconsin’s portion of Lake Superior. The scene was pastoral with a view of other islands as well the north shore of Lake Superior that is Minnesota.
The strategy of departing Sault St. Marie and the Soo Locks Sunday evening and get west past the east tip of the Keweenaw Peninsula by midnight Monday was successful for reducing exposure to a fresh northwest breeze forecast for Eastern Lake Erie. Late afternoon Monday the favorable southerly wind pushing Pride along at better than 10 knots died out as she reached abeam and north of Manitou Island off the east tip of Keweenaw Point. From there is was a relatively gentle motorboat ride against a slowly developing west wind of 15-25 knots till around 2 AM Tuesday when the northwest wind arrived and Pride was north of the Keweenaw Waterway. From there she sailed again the remaining 80 odd miles to just 5 miles short of her anchorage.
The northwest wind brought clear skies and even cooler temperatures. Monday night was rather cold and crew clothing was doubled up. But Tuesday afternoon it was short sleeves again.
Today we have a soft departure for Duluth some 60 miles away. We are expected there late morning tomorrow (Thursday) to pick up some day-sail passengers to go back out again and perform the “official” Parade of Sail arrival in the afternoon. Between now and then the wind is forecast to be 5-15 knots from the southwest and west. This presents a sail to windward in winds that are just barely sailable up to winds that are as much as can be sustained without having to reduce sail to moderate how much Pride will lean over…heel. I think 24 hours to get the 60 miles ought to be adequate considering some of the wind will be very light.
The crew are facing a very full schedule in Duluth. Not only will Thursday’s (tomorrow) day of arrival start with having sailed all night in shifts of watches, but the day won’t end till after 8 PM because of a dockside reception after having entered into Duluth Harbor twice, and docked twice, in order to pick up passengers for the parade of sail. Friday, Saturday and Sunday will all be days that will start at 8 AM and end around 10 PM because of evening charter obligations. But being as there are three days, one third of the crew can be given a full day off each day. Sounds pretty good, considering. However it makes it hard to do other things for the ship, such as the crew laundry because it requires sending crew to do it…having the effect of reducing the number of crew aboard to manage the visiting public. There is also grocery shopping with a need to send assistance by the crew with the cook. It is our hope the volunteer liaisons assigned to Pride will be willing to help “do” the laundry so that only one crew will need to be sent. Same for grocery shopping, rather than merely driving crew to where they have to go and leaving them there till they are done. Not all tall ship festival port liaisons are so willing. But Duluth has a history of being very enthusiastic for visiting tall ships. So we are hopeful.
We are losing our new cook in Duluth. Tina says she will stay on through Duluth and help get the galley groceries organized with a menu plan for the next voyage leg from Duluth to Boyne City. Assuming we are not able to find another cook, the cooking will fall to the crew taking turns each day. Maybe the guest crew for that leg will be helpful with the preparations of each meal. There is also a tall ship race from Duluth going most of the length of Lake Superior. Having a crew member re-designated to the galley for a day could be a little frustrating. Oh well. Such is the life of a small society of a voyaging vessel. The travel, the remoteness, the living with others not of your choice, the regular physical output all day long is not for the uninitiated. It had been a long time since Tina had been aboard a vessel. Even then only for short periods of time, like a weekend or a week and voyaging overnight was not a regular thing. Her love of that past hid from her the real work that is to be found aboard a vessel with regular long range voyaging as its mission.
Jan C. Miles and the very flexible and understanding crew of Pride of Baltimore II.