Trip to Vancouver via Panama Canal: Day 1 | Yachtsmiths PEI

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First of all, let me apologize for not getting around to this sooner.

It was initially my intention to post to this blog while we were underway. However this did not happen for several reasons, the first of which was that I severely injured my left knee three days before we left Halifax. I fell out of the back of the company truck and tore my ACL and injured a few other things in there. This made getting around a bit difficult at sea, and quite frankly I didn’t have the energy or desire to blog for a while.

Secondly, as this was the maiden voyage of the boat, my full attention was required to monitor and maintain the boat.

So, now it is the 5th of November and I’m sitting beside a warm fire at our place in Prince Edward Island….time to write!

I have promised my web developer that I will write something every week to keep the postings fresh….so please keep checking back for updates.

Trip Map

 
Day 1 – June 3rd

As most of you know, our delivery journey started out on the Third of June 2014. That morning we christened the boat by the traditional dripping of some rum on the bow, and of course swigging back the rest!

Boat Christening: VIDEO

Our trusty crew consisted of myself, my trusted mate Robert, the owners representative Neil, and our cook Ruby.

Boat at slip in Halifax

Boat at slip in Halifax

There were definitely mixed feelings for me leaving the harbour because I was leaving my good friend and client Thomas behind to finish his boat (Schooner Tesha) and get it ready for sea by himself. Thomas was a client of ours for many years and over that time we built a friendship. The plan was always for me to help him take his boat across the Bay of Fundy to Boston at least and maybe beyond. Now, with the delivery of RowDay-O and the state of my leg, this was not possible. I did leave him in the very capable hands of my friend Richard who eventually helped him sail to Boston, but I will always feel that I missed something…

 

We got underway at 10am. It was a nice sunny day in Halifax but as is the norm for that time of year, the fog bank was ever present about 3 miles off shore. We were soon in the thick fog, steaming along in our own world. the wind was fairly constant at 10-15 knots and the waves were building slightly to a 1-2 meter swell.

Boat out on the waves: VIDEO

Our destination at that time was not determined….my thoughts at the time were that I wanted to see how the boat would perform at sea, given that this was the first time we left the safety of Halifax Harbour, and that when crossing the Bay of Fundy, it is important to anticipate your arrival time so that you can clear into customs and immigration during the day on the other side.

We were averaging 10 knots, and the boat was running well. We decided to tuck into Port Mouton about 2/3rds of the way down the Nova Scotia coast for the night. Assuming an early morning departure from here would ensure a daylight arrival in the USA. I had anchored in Port Mouton years ago on another delivery and was confident that there was good holding ground there. It is also a very beautiful beach in the summer with 20 foot high sand dunes! If you didn’t know better you would think you were in the outer banks off the Carolinas!

We anchored off of Carters Beach in about 15 feet of water, in a 20 knot blow. We were quite nervous that we might drag the anchor as this was the first time the boat had anchored for the night and we were unsure of the effect of the wind and current on the boat and ground tackle. So, we set an anchor watch on the depth sounder/chart, and organized a watch schedule.

I was to be on watch with Ruby and Neil and Robert were the second watch.
This was a watch schedule that maintained all the way to Panama City.

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