Weekend Cruise to Bellingham

Friday, April 19

20130422-221646.jpgThis weekend’s outing began, as many do, scanning everyone’s calendars a month or so out for any work/family/etc obligations. The ruling was, this weekend would work and fingers were crossed for decent weather.

Checking the forecast as the week progressed, things didn’t look all too great. Not terrible, just not the spring sunshine and blue skies that were hoped for.

Friday evening, the folks from Enough Time, JaCarol, and Briar Patch rolled into town and I made the five minute journey from home to boat. We all met up on Enough Time, where we caught up on all the happenings and made some plans to go find some dinner.

A little bored with some of the regular haunts in Anacortes, some one suggested driving over to LaConner, and the LaConner Brewery. We were all hungry, so we loaded up and hit the road.

Dinner was great. Wood-fired pizzas, salads, beer, and good conversation. We made plans for the next morning. Wake up early, look out the window, check the forecast, and go from there. If things looked decent, we were going, as we all wanted to get off the dock. The forecast was 10-20 knot winds from the southwest, building to 15-25 in the afternoon, so if we were heading out, a departure somewhere around 7:30 was planned.

Back at the marina, we retired to our boats. I read a little before turning in, listening to the wind whistling through the rigging of the sailboats nearby. I was pretty sure we would wave off plans to leave in the morning if the wind continued. I woke up around 3:30, and checked the forecast. No change. Back to bed. This might not be so early of a morning as planned.

Saturday, April 20

About 6:30 my phone buzzed with a text message. Carol wrote, “Pretty morning..”. I listened and looked outside. It was. The wind, thankfully had shut off. The phone lit up with further messages indicating we were going…

Up and out of bed, I made some coffee and got the boat ready to leave, and I was out of the slip not far off of the 7:30 target. Briar Patch was a few minutes ahead. Cara is in the process of having some engine work done that isn’t quite complete, so she elected to hop aboard JaCarol, where she would couch surf for the weekend.

I sipped my coffee and and had some breakfast under way. It was a nice run at displacement speed.

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We arrived at the Port of Bellingham’s Squalicum Harbor where we tied up to guest moorage. Shortly after, the forecasted winds began to materialize and we were glad we left when we did, having enjoyed a comfortable ride.

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One of the reasons we chose to come to Bellingham was to visit the Farmers Market, so we made the mile or so walk from the marina, as the sun was beginning to come out.

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This is a great market, worth a visit. Vendors offered their goods, while buskers entertained market goers for tips.

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We picked up a few items, and enjoyed lunch across the street at the Boundary Bay Brewery before waking back to the boats. It was nap time…

Our timing was good once again, as the skies opened up and poured rain. Jonathan and I had planned to go walk the marina a bit, but the rain delayed those plans, but we still managed to go explore. We returned in time to begin preparing dinner, with items we picked up at the Farmer’s Market, along with some fresh crab bought at the marina. We had dinner aboard Briar Patch, feasting on grilled oysters on the half shell, crab, fresh bread, and salad. Shortly after, tired from a fun day, we all called it a night.

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Sunday, April 21

Early in the morning, the rain poured. It was comfortable on board, listening to the raindrops hit the decks.

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After everyone was up and moving, it wasn’t long before we were ready to start toward home. Still raining, we untied and shoved off. Almost immediately, the rain stopped, and the skies cleared as we went along.

The run home was with a bit of a following sea, but the autopilot performed nicely. Had I been running without it, I would have abandoned the notion of running at displacement speed, and put the boat on plane to just get through it. Having to steer the boat in such conditions would have gotten annoying, instead it was fun to see just how well the autopilot worked.

Back in the slip, I got the boat all washed and ready for the next trip. Not sure when or where the next trip will be. It’s also time for some maintenance and maybe a couple more projects that have been on my list for a while.

Trip Total: 33.5 NM

View my track from this cruise.

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2 Responses to Weekend Cruise to Bellingham

  1. Mrs. Robinson says:

    Sorry we couldn’t tag along. Looks like fun times and, as always, great company and food!!!

  2. Jolly Mon says:

    It would have been fun to have you along. Next time!