7/3/2008 - 7/7/2008
Fourth of July
A Summer Trip
Everett to Port Ludlow
All night and throughout the morning a series of
severe thunderstorms has been rolling north through the area. As I was
out in the boathouse doing some final preparations a particularly heavy
downpour started. The weather service says they will continue north
through the early afternoon. This means there is a good chance of being
in one up north in Everett, our launch site, at 1pm when we plan to be
there. Since it takes the same time to remove the mast as to put it up
we decided to pull it off in the protection of the boathouse rather than
raise it in the middle of a storm at the ramp.
I spent 20 minutes disconnecting the various
attachments and then handed the mast off to Sam and Dawn on the ground
who set it on the shelf to the side of the boathouse. We mounted the
motoring mast, and loaded the dinghy on the bow and were ready to go.
After hooking up the truck we discovered that we still have tail light
problems. I know it's not the trailer wiring and lights now so it
must be wiring issues at the bumper of the truck. We made this
relatively short drive with only a right side light working.
We have an extra crew member for part of this trip,
Sam's girl friend Elizabeth will be with us for 2 nights. She arrived
around 10am. We hit the road at 1:15 and had a smooth drive up to
Everett. Without the mast we were able to pull right up to the launch,
there were plenty of empty lanes in the 13 lane launch. We were worried
about the extreme -4' low tide at 12:15pm and intentionally left a bit
late. Even though the tide is still about -2' there is plenty of ramp
and dock left. This ramp is good at any tide level. It's also cheap at
$5 for the launch which includes the first day parking and $3 parking
each day after that.
We quickly had the boat in the water and the truck
parked. Mike and I made the walk back to the boat where Dawn had
finished most of the setup. We warmed up the motor and headed out. The
steering seemed weird as I backed away from the dock and in looking aft
I noticed the motor was still on the locked straight post where I had it
for the ride. The boat doesn't turn as sharp or quickly with just the
rudders but it worked well enough to get into the channel. Once there it
was simple to use the quick release of the BWY steering system and
connect the motor back up to the steering bar. This a new feature of the
bigger motor that I'll have to remember to check each time.
We exited the jetty island channel and made our way
south. We had to pause slightly to wait for the Mukilteo ferry to leave
the dock, but soon were on our way. We are on fast cruise at 4500 rpm
and with the boat loaded for 5 days out and 6 people on board with all
their stuff we are making 15-16 knots. The autopilot drives very well at
this speed. The hull has good form stability and doesn't wander as much
as it does at slower speeds.
For the most part it was a calm crossing with only a
few bumps off of the Point No Point light. Everyone got a nap but me.
We arrived at the Couches dock at 5:30 And tied up
next to their Grand Banks 42 woody. All the kids made a beeline for the
beach and immediately started digging bunkers in the sand. Soon we had
met up with Clay, Kathy, Missy, and Polly. We just hung around chatting.
We used the stove in the Elvis shack to cook dinner of teriyaki
meatballs and noodles. It was a relaxing evening and we turned in around
Mike and Nick are sleeping in the vee berth of the
Grand Banks, while Dawn and I are in the vee berth of our boat as usual.
Sam is on the port side of the aft berth and Elizabeth is on the
starboard side. The new flip up ladder makes access to the rear berth a
lot easier. Down the center in the low part is a wall of duffel bags
along with the underwater video camera. At least there is some
semblance of separation between the two love birds.
We got up around 10am. Dawn and I went up to Missy and
Steve's cabin for coffee and a light breakfast. Steve and I then joined
his dad Clay onboard the Grand Banks to hoist and relocate the anchor for their
mooring buoy. We managed to lift the chain and concrete blocks with the
windlass and get it set in the right place. We then attached the new
float and worked to get it positioned so it can used as a spring line
when tied to the side of the dock we are on. Allegro is tied up to
it and it does a nice job of holding the boat off the dock with the wind
from the North.
Lunch was ham buns and chips on shore. The kids have
managed to dig quite a large hole in the sand. Dede and Steve (my sister
and brother-in-law) arrived in the early afternoon as did a lot of other
people joining the party. Unlike the last time we were here for
the fourth of July, this year our kids are the oldest ones here and
there are a lot of younger ones to watch out for. There also is an
ample supply of dogs that so far are all getting along well.
Around 3pm we borrowed
Missy's car and I took the boys and Elizabeth to a fireworks stand just
past Poulsbo. They picked up a load of rockets and firecrackers. We got
back at 4:30pm and they headed to the beach to watch their money go up
in smoke. Dawns been napping in the
Potluck dinner was around 8pm with lot's of food for
all. This was followed by a birthday cake for our country.
Clay and Steve got the bonfire going using the weed burner and the leaf
blower. We quickly had a roaring fire.
The boys did a
good job of refraining from lighting too many fireworks too early. At dusk, Clay
recruited the kids to carry out box after box of his fireworks supply.
The beach across the cove started firing off theirs a bit early. About 7
dinghies from the yacht club out station came over and swelled our ranks
on shore to over 50. The show was great with lots of multiple volleys to
music from the Elvis shack.
The display lasted over 30 minutes and ours
was clearly the best of the 3 big shows in the cove. The one down the
beach did have some high standard mortars that were very large bursts
had a lot of multi stage bursts (cakes as they are called in the
business) in some unique patterns and colors. The final cake had 102
motors that went off in a long sequence. Nick
filled in the pauses between the big stuff with rocket and firecracker fire.
Once the show was over we saw the dinghies safely away
past our buoy spring line (invisible in the dark as it crossed the water
2'-3' above the surface) and then gathered around the fire to talk.
Nick and Mike are up at the trailer tonight in the bunks.
We turned in at 12:30 am.
At the Couches private dock in Port Ludlow
Our extra crew member
Dig deep, the redcoats are coming
The Elvis Shack
Someday he'll be bigger than the dog
Can we start blowing things up now?
I'll sit here,
and here, and here!.
At last we can light some stuff
A birthday cake for our country
Thanks for inviting us Missy!
Oh say can you see ...
... and the rockets red glare,
The bombs bursting in air ...
Party on uncle Steve