Smooth Sailing with a Bumpy Start


My alarm went off at 6:30am. I slipped out of bed at 7:00am loaded the rental car with my computer and fresh bagels (from the night before).

Heading off on the 401 to Mississauga to pick up my first crew mate, Daniel, I texted him that I was running a few minutes late. Google maps led right to his front door where he was awaiting me ready and excited to cast off. He was prepared for the road trip to Catskills NY where I had left Australian Kiss 3 weeks earlier. The next stop was Duty Free in Fort Erie to pick up our third crew, Wendy who was also ready and waiting.

We crossed the border without incident and it was a beautiful sunny day as we drove along I90 through upstate NY. The posted speed limit was 65 but the speedometer read 80 just to keep up with traffic. A good start to what can be a hectic journey.

Arriving at the Hop-O-Nose Marina, Daniel and Wendy met Australian Kiss, my 2017 Beneteau Oceanis 41.1 for the first time. She was left at the marina 3 weeks ago after sailing back from a winter in the Bahamas. Mast was down, running the length of the boat. Sitting on the cradles, which ran across the stern, bow and centre the deck. She will be our home and carriage for the next 5 days as we motor north and west from the tidal waters of the Hudson River to the sweet (fresh) water of Lake Ontario.

Monday morning, we were all up early to greet Mike the mechanic who although was suppose to have readied the boat weeks earlier with an oil and filter change, arrived at 6:50 to complete (start/finish) the job.

Despite making arrangements 3 weeks earlier, he didn’t have the parts that were required for the diesel water filters. Note to self, ALWAYS have spare parts on-board.

Rental car returned, check; Oil changed, check; Crew briefing, check; Marina bill paid, check!

All lines were cast off and we were motoring out of the Catskill Creek and into the Hudson River.

As they say, whoever ‘they’ are…. “All systems Go”

Leaving the protection of the creek we planned on stopping for fuel prior to heading north but there was a boat sitting at the fuel dock some-what semi-permanently so the decision was made to fuel in Albany. We passed the fuel dock and headed out to the river, passing a few anchored sail boats in the centre of the channel. Ooops. bump, Bump BUMP! It was clear we were on the wrong side of the anchorage and the boats were hiding the green buoys from my view. Run Aground !^&^%$@!. I knew we were at low tide so at least it would only be a short while to be lifted off the bottom. After a few wiggles and 10 minutes, we were free and back in the channel. Into the river, we motored , north to Waterford NY and the start of the next leg of our journey.

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Let the journey begin, a world of adventures, relaxation, and memories awaits!

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