July 13,2014 And here we are in Port Austin. Leaving Sarnia was great….we rode up the back current on the Canadian side under the Bluewater Bridges…a nice light 5+ knots per hour…and then….1.7 knots, like right now, Kewalo’s 12.7 hp Yanmar diesel just screaming at full rpms. Quite a difference from our ride going the opposite direction 3 years ago when we were surfing under the bridges at over 11 knots. One heck of a current. We had met a Canadian couple from Toronto, Dave and Heather, who own a Pacific Seacraft 34. What a pretty sailboat! They had left just before us and had texted that there would be no sailing that day….. .
Sarnia Bay Marina
Out into Lake Huron we “sped”….and were greeted by no wind, no waves, no sailing……on we go with the motor for another day. We finished off at Lexington…a nice little Michigan town. When we were there 3 years ago, it appeared to be fading away, but this visit showed us new growth, stores, bars……and we were quite happy to stock up with some American priced alcohol….yippee! There was a great outdoor concert at the marina, a grand way to celebrate my upcoming birthday, and there was a very large crowed dancing and enjoying the band.
We departed Lexington early the next morning, and headed for Harbour Beach…with it’s large power plant dominating the harbour. We pretty much motor sailed the whole way once again……ol’ mom nature not quite ready to give us the ride we are looking for. We took the courtesy van into town for dinner, and though the clouds looked ominous..I was under the mistaken impression that it would not rain for a wee bit. Wrong! Hatch open, portlights open…rain in boat. LOL! Lesson learned. The fireworks were cancelled due to the weather…which really turned rotten later, lightning, thunder and a huge amount of rain in a very short time. We departed the Harbour Beach marina at about 9 a.m., the weather clear enough for us to venture out. And venture out we did..no sooner out of the harbour and we had the fore and staysails up and snapping, pulling us along at a nice 5 knots. Then up with the main…..and trying to hold a course conducive to getting around the thumb…but we all know how well Bayfields point……and it turned into a long day. The winds increased to 23 mph, and there was a lot of tacking and gybing involved to try and hold a good course. We had to drop the fore and stay..it was just plain old overpowering Kewalo trying to get around the thumb. After a long day beating back and forth, we finally arrived in Port Austin shortly after 4 p.m. Port Austin is a very nice harbour, and while fueling and getting a pump out, a Jenneau 47 pulled in beside us……man, what a pretty boat! Beth then did some laundry, I prepped a couple of ribeyes for supper….and poor Beth fractured a tooth while eating. Not a great testament to my barbequing skills…but take it from me, the steak was tender and delicious. While eating, a Tayana 55 pulled in….man, another beauty! Another cool night is in store…might have to have a blanket tonight! Makes for good sleeping. So, off to East Tawas tomorrow, where we hope to get Beth into a dentist for some repair work…..hoping to