Saturday, August 07, 2010

On our way to Buckle Harbor, Swans Island, ME

On Wednesday, August 4th, we were in Belfast on a mooring ball and trying to decide if we wanted to leave or hang out for another day.  The weather was overcast with fog as a backdrop.  We had checked the weather as we always do, probably 10 times a day, and decided that we were ready to move on.

We also decided to tow the dingy rather than put it back on the boat.  What you want to do here is have the dink ready to go exploring.  It turned out to be a fabulous day with sun and cool breezes.  Gotta love Maine! 

We cruised from Belfast through the Eggemoggin Reach which is a beautiful cruising area.  This was the first time that we saw so many other boats.  We have been wondering about why we saw so few pleasure boats on our trip in Maine so far.  But they were out in huge numbers yesterday.  We assume that it was because of the front that came through and brought up big winds for all the sailboats.

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We saw dolphins, seals and lots of  small birds called Guillemots, which swim underwater using their wings to bottom fish.

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             Our first picture of a seal                       A Guillemot…they dive as soon as you see them

We were on our way to a beautiful anchorage that we had heard about.  Our 4 hour trip was full of dodging lobster floats (that, obviously, are attached to lobster pots/traps).  We are pretty used to that by now and we actually don’t mind lobster pots most times, because it provides some interest as you are cruising along…dodging them can be interesting! 

We have been happy that we have dodged them left and right at the correct times so as not to get the lines drawn into our props which would be a BIG problem.  However, things just have a way of bringing you back to reality.  We were coming into the very skinny entrance of Buckle Harbor, our anchorage, which was full of lobster pots and we were trying to figure out where to set the anchor as, yup, we picked up our first lobster float.  Luckily it got wrapped around the rudder post instead of the prop, so we continued into the anchorage, dragging the float and trap with us. 

We got anchored fine, and Rick managed to grab the float with a boat hook and secure it to a cleat on the swim platform, so it wouldn’t get further entangled, and decided to figure out how to deal with the float in the morning.  If we couldn’t easily remove it, we would have to either cut the line and hope it fell off or one of us was going to have to go into the water and get it off .  We both slept fitfully thinking about what to do because the water is 55 degrees and we didn’t even think to bring our wetsuits.  What was up with that??? 

Anyway, we were very lucky because Rick was able to pull both floats and the trap onto the swim platform (they use two floats on each trap up here) and enough of the line to be able to take the floats off of the line, and pull the line off of the rudder post.  So, no lines had to be cut and no one had to get into the water.  Phew.  Rick retied the lines to the floats.

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So, we had a ‘lazy pajama day’ after taking the lobster pot and floats in the dingy and dragging it out to a place where it wasn’t going to be a problem.   It was a good thing that we decided to just hang out since the fog rolled in and stayed heavy most of the day.

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                   Our view from the aft deck                    A lobsterman as the fog starts to come in

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    2 sailboats in front of us                             The same view as the fog comes in

Pretty soon we could see less than 25 yards for most of the day.  Good day to hang and read all day.  We could do boat chores but, hey, we can do that when we get back to NC! 

Next blog will have more on our anchorage.  Such a beautiful place.