A cold winter day in May!

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We traveled through a cold, soggy, gray, windless world on our way from Shoal Bay to Port Neville

We woke on Tuesday to a quiet, cold, very wet day, as had been predicted. By mid-morning we were motoring to yet another set of rapids with rain falling steadily, almost no wind, and lowering clouds in every direction. HAPPY SPRING!! At least it wasn’t snowing!

Our chief difficulty during our four-hour journey was visibility: Braesail is designed in such a way that windshield wipers are nearly impossible to install, and so we must rely on a squeegee and towels for moisture removal from the cockpit windows on cold, rainy days and on radar for location of surrounding hazards obscured by clouds and fog. Walt thought of using a small fan that we normally use in the saloon on hot days to circulate cockpit air, so we suction-cupped it onto the companion way’s top cover and it helped a good deal, though I still had to clear the cockpit windows periodically with a rag or squeegee (a task that keeps me exercised!). We were both thankful for the warm air that our heating system blows over the feet of the person at the helm!

From Shoal Bay in Cordero Channel (center right) to Port Neville (upper left)

Walt encountered no steering difficulties while going through the Greene Point Rapids (because we were there at slack tide, as is our wont), but cruising conditions remained less than ideal! Later we were glad to be hailed via radio by another sailboat, Corazon, whose skipper was heading to Port Neville, the destination we had chosen after encountering increasingly diminished visibility and a good bit of wood debris bobbing about in the water. We agreed to meet at the Port Neville dock, and Gordon, the skipper, very kindly helped with our docking lines when we arrived. We’d also been hailed by the skipper of North Star, one of the boats that had joined us at Shoal Bay, and we might meet that vessel and crew again at some point in our journeys.

We spent the wintry afternoon drinking hot tea, relaxing, and warming up and drying out after getting rather wet during docking. It was hard to see much of the houses on the shore or the gravelly beach because of the rain and mist. We are anticipating a similarly uncomfortable tomorrow, unfortunately, as we head for Lagoon Cove. Sigh!

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