Sailing into Marblehead

What a sailing day this was, with 25-30 knots off Boston Mass, as we headed from Scituate to Marblehead. The sky was so blue, the winds topped out at 33 knots true, and we all were sailing with reefed main sails and reefed jibs. This was a first on Island Spirit; we have a rope luff in the 135% jenny, but we have never used it. At 33 knots on the beam…..YOU NEED TO REEF! So reef we did, and we had the best sail of the trip so far.

Today was also the start of the Marblehead to Halifax yacht race, so we were timing our arrival to Marblehead around noon so we could see the large race boats heading out. There were 104 racing yachts moored in the harbor!

We picked up mooring balls in what turns out to be a very tight harbor. Luckily, we connected with IP420 Entropy, Martha and Bob Rose, who helped us secure balls from the Boston Yacht Club. After the races got under way, Entropy invited all of us over to their yacht for a lovely wine and cheese party. It was so nice of them after working all day on the race course and then coming in and hosting a party for 14+ people! THANK YOU! We also enjoyed meeting Drew of IP380 Shawnee. Friendly IPers in Marblehead and plenty of sunshine, too!

From here we plan to run to MAINE, at Kittery….

Island Packet 380 Memphis Belle in 27 knots reaching hard
Island Spirit under reefed jib and cruisin at 7.5 knots!
The Boston Yacht Club at Marblehead

Scituate Harbor Mass

This is our first visit to Scituate Harbor and it has been a great time with many shore side services and amenities. The entrance to the harbor from sea is very short, and well marked but the harbor is tight with no room to anchor with plenty of mooring balls. Once in the harbor, you hail the “Scituate Launch” and they will tell you to come down to R8, stand by and then they will direct you to your mooring ball. In 2009, the fee was $35.00/night which includes launch service to and from town.

Once in town, the harbormaster’s office is the center of the hub and within two blocks there is…

  • Ice Cream
  • Dunkin Donuts
  • CVS
  • Laundromat
  • Grocery Stores
  • Pizza Shops
  • Diners & Restraunts
  • Hardware Stores
  • 3 Liquor stores
  • Shops and boutiques
  • Commercial Fishing and Charter Fishing docks

So, as you can see, we used our stay here to re-provision, do laundry, and simply walk the cliffs and beaches. July 4th we enjoyed fireworks over the harbor from 3 different locations, and during the day, we finally had a blue sky, no fog, and NO RAIN!

Next Stop…..Marblehead….after the Marblehead to Halifax race departs….

Notice the 10′ tides that is out…

The dinghy dock with 10′ tides down. Look at the ramp!

Let’s play….“Find the Island Packets”……Scituate Lighthouse in back

The Harbor Chart, look how close the services all are.
This is a great spot for provisions, laundry and a rest.

Cape Cod Canal North Bound

Departing Pocasset Red Brook Harbor, we ran the Cape Cod canal with six Island Packets as we are traveling in a fleet. The tides in this area are about 10 feet and the current in the canal can run 3-4 knots so you need to wait for, and time the run into the canal so you are going with the current. For us, the best time to make this run would have been at 1430 hrs but we decided to run earlier against the tide in order to make the 7-8 hr run up to Scituate Harbor. Weather, as usual, was rain, fog and thunderstorms, so we watched the radar and tracked the storms via and SIRIUS Weather. Lucky for us, the frontal line parted into two systems with a hole directly over the canal. So we ran out of Pocasset with a storm to our SE and one to or NW and just light rain traveling NE with us in the canal.

It was really cool to see the fleet under the Railroad bridge as that is the true beginning of the canal. We timed it and reached the railroad bridge at 1230 hrs when it was slack low, and from then on we had a push out the rest of the canal.

While in the canal, we had the special treat of being passed by Jim Grundy’s brand new TRIPP 75′ race boat called BELLA PITA. What a machine that was and she was so close, the owner yelled over….”Meet the guy who designed it….BILL TRIPP!”…..She was beautiful and on her way to Marblehead for the Race to Halifax. Google: Belle Pita and Jim Grundy…impressive!

Blasting into Cape Cod Bay, the winds picked up to 15-20 knots SE with slight rain, so we set full sails, main, jib and cutters and sailed on a beam reach to a broad reach up to Scituate Harbor. We arrived at Scituate in low viz with fog around 1730. We are geting better at running in fog and rain and 20 knots of wind. Up here, they have had 27 days of rain in the month of JUNE! We are hoping that this is now over….

BELLE PITA Tripp 75′ Passes us in the Canal
The Designer is onboard (blue hat)
Massive Rig with 3 spreaders

The Fleet sails Cape Cod Bay for Scituate