Block Island, RI at anchor

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Living on the anchor at Block Island, RI is near paradise! We are currently at the BLISS Rendezvous and having a wonderful time. Last night we had a storm and I had to run the dinghy out into the storm to check on the boat. Of course we held tight but the boat next to us broke free and was washed up onto the rocks. They got off this AM and are now floating free again. Uploaded here is abeautiful sunset photo from last night of Radeen as we head back to the boat after dinner.

Also here is a 360 degree video of the anchorage. It may not be that clear due to me still working out the resolution and compressions, but it shows that harbor and where we are.
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Dealing with Water on anchor

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Living on a boat at anchor without a watermaker or a rain collection system demands getting water in two ways. One pulling up anchor and motoring to a fuel dock and taking on water, or two going to shore with the dinghy and 5 gallon water jugs and carry the water back to the boat. We carry water back since that is a bit easier. Two people living on a boat will use 15 gallons per day on average. Our boat holds 90 gallons of water, so that will last 6 days. This water is used for showers, cooking, dishes, and washing down the boat. The toilet uses sea water to flush into the holding tank so no fresh water is used for flushing. So, the standard game plan is to everyday run to shore with your water jugs and bring back 15 to 20 gallons. Upon returning to the boat you lift these 5 gallon jugs onto the deck from the dinghy and then climb up onto deck and carry the jugs to the deck water fill fitting. Next you open the deck fill fitting and using a funnel you pour the 15 to 20 gallons of water into the boats water tank. This is our procedure everyday when living on the anchor. Here is a photo of “water boy” at work on day 1 at Block Island, RI. In the photo I am pouring the water into the deck fill and the additional 4 jugs are up on deck next to me. Imagine the next time that you use water, that you will have to go fetch and carry back all the water you use! Welcome aboard, conserve water!

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30 Knots @ Anchor Block Island

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We spent our first night at anchor in true Block Island style with the winds blowing 25 to 30 knots and boats dragging anchor other boats blown up onto the rocks, dinghies breaking feee and drifting by and white caps and wave in the pond. Of course this all happens at midnight to 2 am and the VHF radio is lively with all the hailing and distress calls being broadcasted. We did not have any trouble, lucky for us. We have out a 44 lb Bruce anchor and 175 feet of chain in about 30 feet of water so we held tight all night long. One of the beauties of Block is that in the AM, the pastry boat arrives hailing…”Andiamo….Andiamo” with fresh cinnamon rolls, cheese danishes, hot coffee, and fresh fruit. You have to love Block Island. Here are a few photos to enjoy.

Snubber Line on deck with back up snubber to port
No load is on the windlass
Snubber does not need to be over the bow

The Dinghy Dock where you park your “car”

Our first walk around the town with the Narragansett Hotel in the background

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Sunrise Video off Montauk Point, NY

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We are 25 miles from Montauk Point with current on the bow as the sound ebbs out to sea, ugh! The winds have been calm all night with 8-10 from the SW nearly dead astern so we ran a jib along with the engine all night making 6.5 knots. We do not have a spinnaker, but if we did, it would have been perfect for that. With the boat speed at 6 and the wind at 10 apparent wind is 4 and very light with the jib collapsing half the time. If we would sail with a full main the jib would be too blanketed so that we killed at sunset. Looks like we will arrive Montauk around 10am and Block around Noon.Happy July 4th everyone

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Depart Cape May July 3rd , 2007

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Team Island Spirit pulled the anchor at 0100 and set the course for Block Island. Winds are currently from the west at 8 Kts. We are motor sailing with the jib alone at a SOG of 7 Kts. Entry being made via Blackberry over the Verison EVDO network. More updates to follow.

JRG's BlackBerry

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WOW, what a ride! 27 knots, 7.5speed

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Team Island Spirit had a fantastic run from Rock Hall, Md direct overnight to Cape May, NJ 110 miles. We left Rock Hall Sun at 1pm and with 10 knots of wind we ended up sailing over towards Baltimore hoping that the next tack onto Port would allow us to make turkey point. Not so due to current on the nose and a north wind making it a very close beat. After 1.5 hrs of having fun sailing, we decided we needed to make way towards the C&D. We had no plan other than to NOT get into the C&D before 5:45pm when the current would then turn east running into the Delaware Bay. Blasting through the C&D we tested out our broadband onboard Verizon network and place a Skype video call back to Jeff’s family and realized that we had one cool set up onboard! Laptop #2 was listening to AIS with Sea Clear displaying their info on our free ENC charts. Laptop # 3 was Jeff’s laptop and he was tapping into his email and checking weather and surfing the web. Yes, we are techno geeks and wanted to really hit this setup with all we had, sure enough, it is working very well. We exited the C&D at 2300 hrs and decided with this north wind of 15 and a full moon, we would not stop at Reedy but rather we would keep on the ebb tide and run this to Cape May. With 50 miles to go, we ran all night with 2 on deck at all times and one off watch taking 2 hrs to sleep. ( I sleep from 2am to 3:44am) The wind built to a high of 27 knots with an average of 18 to 20 knots from the port beam. We arrived at the Cape May Canal at 6am, and ran the canal pulling into Utches Marine fuel dock at 7am. After taking on fuel we motored over to the anchorage area next to the Coast Guard station and drop the hook and got to use my NEW Lofrans Tigress windlass. What a dream that machine is, it works great! Now we are testing out the network with 3 laptops online, and performing speed test and we have 800Kbps download speeds and 500Kbps upload speeds from the boat via the Verizon EV-DO broadband network. Check out your own speeds at: http://speedtest.net/ . OK, time to catch up on some sleep.

Sent via email blogging, cool!

PS: We took some videos that we will upload and of course tons of photos.

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Chesapeake Bay / C& D Canal

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We headed up the bay departing around 1pm and arrived at the head of the bay around 5 due to current on the nose. But, this put us into the C&D with the current flowing east to the Delaware Bay. Once in the Delaware Bay we had to push current for 1 hr till that bay turned and he sailed ourt Jib with 15 knots on the beam under FULL MOON all night! This is why we did not stop at Reedy Island, it was just too nice to stop, so here we are heading down the Delaware Bay around midnight. Here are a few photos of departure and the C&D.

The happy shot as we leave the dock. That is always the toughest part of any voyage

Jeff Gabor, our good friend and crew

The RL70C Plotter / Radar in the C&D

The view of the C&D Canal from the helm

OK, it is 1:30 AM and I am in the middle of the Delaware Bay, Radeen is on watch, Jeff is off watch, I need to go to the other laptop and check the AIS ship data in our area. I see a ship out the porthole. More fun later.

Watches tonight: 2200-0000 Hayden, 0000-0200 Radeen, 0200-0400 Jeff, The we start again. We keep two on deck at all times at night, except to do post like these. OK, off to help Radeen.

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Heading NORTH…departure

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FYI all North East sailors, team Island Spirit has departed Rock Hall, MD for points NORTH. With the current high pressure and forecasted winds we may go for a non-stop passage to Block.  Otherwise the plan is Reedy Island or C&D tonight, Cape May Monday night, Block Wed by NOON. We are a mobile hot spot via Verizon broadband and my digital cell antenna out on the solar frame. More on the ship’s network later. We have Jeff Gabor aboard and since he missed Block Island last year, we hope to show him a better tour of Block this year. OK, time to get a power nap as we approach the top of the Chesapeake Bay.

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