Let the Season Begin – With a River Trip!

We usually begin the boating season, casually and slowly by getting the boat into the water sometime in May and then taking short little trips of 1-3 days for a couple of weeks to work out the kinks from a long winter spent on the hard. This year was different. Our friends, the Bakers on Magnolia, live-aboard folks, asked us to join them in June as they cruised up the Hudson River to the Great Lakes and back, their own “Mini- Loop.”  We decided that a new direction with good friends would be a lot of fun, so we agreed to meet them at the Statue of Liberty and spend a couple of weeks on the Hudson with them. I guess our version would be a “Micro-Loop” without the loop.

Between the weather, medical appointments, so-so weather and Al’s boat projects, May passed quickly as we found ourselves in the last week of the month and only days to get ready for the Hudson. Memorial Day weekend was the first time Kindred Spirit had a test run, out to Ledge Light and back. After two years on our mooring my docking skills are rusty to non-existent and this time we were backed into the slip. First time this season and I had to do it in reverse of my usual method. Ugh. Backing in is much harder than bow forward. Good news – Nothing was damaged.

Kindred Spirit ready and waiting in her slip.

Newly painted helm door, new box supporting the solar on the flybridge. We also have a new water heater and a new bow thruster, but they aren’t visible from this angle. 😉

Since we will be gone for over three weeks I decided to bring a few herbs along. Al decided they would be safe nestled between he two bikes on the flybridge

The “pet” sea bass at our yacht club hang out on our dock. Al took his first photos of them. Can you see him (or at least his phone?)

Friday, June 1stdawned foggy and dreary, but we left anyway around 8:30 am, with a very good current. Most of the day we traveled at 8.5-9 knots at 1700 rpms which is good for this little trawler.

Off we go into the wild gray yonder.

Light gray sky, dark gray water. But the seas were very calm.

The red marker near Ledge Light was barely visible. (We weren’t that close, I used the zoom.)

And so it went for 52 nautical miles. See how the view changed by 1:00 pm?

Same view of gray, but I do believe things improved slightly by 1:00 pm

Beautiful old boat – what are they doing out on the water on a day like this?? Oh, wait, what are WE doing out on the water on a day like this???  Actually, it was a boring day, but not at all threatening. We just had to keep our watch on the radar and the AIS, and do 360 degree swings with the old eyeballs more frequently than usual.

The fog never totally disappeared but it lightened a bit. By the time we reached Port Jefferson the visibility had increased from 100 yards to 1-2 miles.

Our first view of the Port Jefferson sand dunes with a light blanket of fog. Al has fond memories of  playing on the dunes as a child..

Arriving in Port Jefferson at 3:00, we turned to starboard to find a mooring to borrow for the night. An entire field of mooring balls and every one was empty. I guess the season hasn’t quite begun yet here.

Thank you, Capt Reiter for the use of your mooring. Look at that – “ball wrap” all ready. You know how Al hates that.

As the sun finally came out we had a good view of the back side of the sand dunes over on the eastern side of the Port Jefferson entrance.

It wouldn’t be Port Jeff without ferries and their very large wakes.

In the distance you can see the town of Port Jefferson.

Smoke stacks and a ferry.

We enjoyed a beer before dinner to celebrate the first trip of the season. Hooray!

Wonder what tomorrow will bring? I’m betting on fog and hoping it doesn’t last all day again. We will be heading to Port Washington.

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