Thursday - July 9 - San Juan Channel (9 NM)

Back on the water after a long absence, well for us anyway. We were off island traveling for 10 days and then we finally got some of our traditional June gloom weather. Not much, but we have been spoiled by perfect sailing weather so we took a pass. Now it looks like that nonsense is over and I wanted to get out, even if just for a short day sail.

And that is exactly what we got today. A short day sail. Not that there is anything wrong with a beautiful afternoon sail.

Typical summer conditions, wind to 10 kts from the SW and a 12:37 low of -1.3 ft with a strong flood for latter in the afternoon.

As usual, we stopped at the channel entrance before heading to the boat at about 14:30 to check on the conditions. There was one sailboat that appeared to be aground on a 0.3 and rising tide and the current was already kicking.

After rowing out and getting the boat ready we cast off and headed out trying to avoid the worst of the flood current. I elected to tack away near the Islanders' dock and let another boat go ahead of us so we got to the channel entrance at 15:30 and a tide of plus 2.2. It was a down wind exit against the building flood current but we made pretty good speed through the mouth of the channel and then were able to head up and power out past the now free sailboat that was coming in.

We sailed towards Griffin Bay but with the strong current and light and variable wind I wasn't going to chance getting caught up in the north bound current. So we sailed around near the mouth of the Fisherman Bay entrance until we saw this beauty coming over from Shaw Island.

I don't know anything about her, except she is Johanna from Shaw Island. The owner asked about channel depth and decided to wait an hour for deeper water. We didn't stay out very long and ending up leading her into the bay a short while latter.

For some reason our return was pretty average. I think I was a bit too cautious with my short tacking at the channel entrance and they were quite bad. Not really holding a tack long enough to make headway and maintain the agile steerage I prefer. Pretty much just being dragged into the channel by the current. In any case it was uneventful and we quickly sailed back to the mooring.

I took the opportunity to practice mooring pickups again and we did a couple and then picked up on the third attempt.

All in all a nice day on the water after a long absence.

July 9 Tides - Friday Harbor

July 9 GPS Track

2009 Sailing Summary
Sailing Days-19 / 65 (29%)
Blissful Hours of Hand Steering - 1:47 hours today & 61:57 hours for the season
Total Miles Under Sailed this Season - 231 NM