Thursday, September 13, 2018: A dingy dinghy driver

By about 10:30 am, we were motoring out of Reid Harbor toward Jones Island, having enjoyed a peaceful night and awakened to a partly-cloudy morning. While in transit, we were passed by a huge (150-ft. long and 26 ft. wide) luxury power yacht with four decks that probably burns at least 30 gallons of fuel per hour! Arriving in Jones Island’s North Cove, we saw that our Matia Island dock mates, John and Marsha on the power boat, Xanadu, were already at the dock, and since there wasn’t room for Braesail there, we hooked a mooring buoy (the Xanadu crew graciously invited us to raft to their boat, but we decided to enjoy the gently swaying “slow-motion merry-go-round” experience that being attached to a buoy provides).

We shared a sandwich lunch at about 1 pm before climbing into Coracle for some dinghy operational practice for me. I began to remember how to steer the dinghy using the outboard motor (I can row the boat but still can’t start the motor consistently or control the speed), and at the public float, Joy and I climbed out and took a wonderful walk/hike of a bit over mile along trails that lead across the island to the south shore and then along the bluffs above its western quadrant.

The southern shore of Jones Island

We encountered three deer, one of which ambled right up to me, hoping for a snack. I scratched the base of his two-point horns, which he seemed to enjoy. The plant life on the drier western side of the island differs considerably from that in the center, and instead of towering fir and cedar trees, hedges of salal, and thick moss rugs draping rocks and stumps, we found fascinatingly contorted madrona trees, dry grasses, scatterings of boulders, and even some cactus. The grand views down to the rock-and-driftwood-strewn beaches

Looking over Jones Island’s southwestern shore

and out over the cerulean sea to the nearby islands were fantastic, and we got some good exercise climbing up and down over stones and roots as we made our way back to the North Cove dock at about 4 pm.

We dropped Joy off on Braesail’s bathing platform, and Walt and I spent another hour in the dinghy (driving each other dingy!) so that I could practice starting, stopping, steering, controlling the speed (when I tried to get the engine to idle, it died), and landing at the edge of the bathing platform (I did it successfully about twice out of a dozen tries). BIG SIGH! I will have to put in a great deal more practice! While Walt prepared a beautiful wilted spinach salad for supper, I rested on the fore deck (a VERY relaxing spot to occupy) and began to work through the Quick Reference Guide for our new Prius Prime Premiere (plug-in hybrid), which is a very complex beast! After chores were completed, the three of us played a game of Hearts (Walt won, as he nearly always does, and Joy and I played Yahtzee (which Joy won, as she nearly always does), and it wasn’t long before we were clasped in the comforting arms of Morpheus.

One thought on “Thursday, September 13, 2018: A dingy dinghy driver

  1. Since it seems you’re getting lots of idle time aboard: you folks need to go find the appropriate screw (should be pretty obvious under the cowling) and kick the idle speed on Coracle’s engine up a few RPM (and/or possibly clean out its jets, but since it’s a new engine, my bet’s on the former rather than the latter).

    As it’s presently set, it’s way too easy to inadvertently stall, which of course means you’re going to kill it at the most inopportune times–like launching and reboarding. Had it not been for my grandmother being present, I’d have showered it with an appropriate stream of cussing, which would have of course made it start much faster on the two times I ended up stalling it out.


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