Charging our battery of batteries

It’s now the evening of Sunday, August 7, and we are still in Juneau. We spent Saturday catching up on reading and writing (lots of email and a long blog post for me, during the writing of which I somehow omitted any mention of our seeing a spirited juvenile humpback whale splashing and breaching the water’s surface several times as the Alaska State Ferry passed by on the trip back to Juneau!) as a great deal of rain rinsed the boats in Statter Harbor in Auke Bay and the wind sighed as it failed to rock Braesail very significantly.

We’d planned to leave for the town of Hoonah this morning, but when Walt checked the “house batteries” shortly after 8 am, he found that they had shut down, and he had to discover why. In the course of his investigations, he found that one of the three lithium batteries had become sufficiently drained so that the system’s safety apparatus had shut down all of the batteries to prevent low charge levels from doing any damage. He was able to start the boat’s diesel engine (the starter battery is separate from the house batteries) and then to connect the boat’s electrical system to shore power to “feed” the batteries (it’s been so cloudy that the solar panels aren’t providing much energy). Walt decided that our charge-level read-out wasn’t accurate, and the batteries contained less charge than they appeared to have when he checked them on Saturday evening; he has now re-calibrated this part of the system, and the batteries are fully charged.

While charging the batteries, we did more reading about the places we’ll soon be visiting, and Walt prepared music for our online sung Compline service ( I love singing and praying with others in real time!). I remade our queen-sized bed (we had to remove the mattress in order to check the batteries that live in compartments beneath it), did some vacuuming, helped Walt swing Braesail around 180 degrees at the dock by pulling on her mooring lines so that space between her and neighboring boats was increased and it was easier to connect our long, heavy external charging cable to the “power tower” on the dock, and took a pleasant evening walk up to the marina office to get $20-worth of quarters from the change machine for the future feeding of washing machines and dryers.

We hope to fill our fuel tank and then motor to Hoonah, a journey of about 40 miles that will take about seven hours, on Monday. I’ve really enjoyed our stay in Juneau, despite my loss of my shopping bag and clutch purse and some very drippy, drizzly days!

Sunday evening view of Statter Harbor in Auke Bay, where Braesail has been resting for a week
Sunbeams and raindrops played tag all day; here you can see evening mists rising over the hills surrounding the harbor as the day ends.
Almost bedtime for this Sunday’s sun

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