Thursday - July 23 - I Guess Sailboats Don't Have the Right of Way (9 NM)

For the very first time in my sailing life I asserted my right of way rules over a power boat. Normally I work very hard to stay clear and give room. But this time I was hemmed in a bit and needed to maintain my course. His response was "why do you have to sail here you dumb ass". Being that his was one of those big multi-story type power boats and that he was coming right at me, I yielded to avoid a possible collision.

At the time I was just inside of the 2 fathom line at a +2.8 ft tide on the West edge of the channel. I had left the entire 140 ft wide deep center portion of the channel open for this large vessel. But for some reason he needed to head straight at me and swear at me for sailing.

Finally I was forced to give way and head into the main part of the channel. This correction put me in exactly the place I was trying to avoid, the crowed center of the channel, so I elected to abort my exit due to an additional two vessel heading in. Both of these vessels would have passed harmlessly by me as I sailed along the 2 fathom line as is the case day in and day out.

I guess in our modern world the nautical right of way rules have reverted to the more time honored rules of:
Sizer matters
Those with the gold make the rules
In any event this skippers cursing and swearing at me for sailing pretty much ruined the mood and a nice day. I still worry that a day will come when enough people like this get together and ban sailing in my home bay.

I do need to add that most boaters are very, very respectful of others and of us sailing. It is just ironic that when I needed a right of way I ran into this skipper.

July 23 Tides - Friday Harbor

July 23 GPS Track

2009 Sailing Summary
Sailing Days-24 / 79 (29%)
Blissful Hours of Hand Steering - 2:10 hours today & 78:05 hours for the season
Total Miles Under Sailed this Season - 294 NM