Every boating season should start with a shakedown and we needed one for sure this year. We haven’t had too many hours cruising on this boat yet – the 8-day trip home when we purchased The Edge, who soon became our next Kindred Spirit, and then the short season of the covid-19/spinal surgery summer which included only 33 days aboard the boat, 20 hours on the engine, only 12 nautical miles from our homeport. That said, we know that Al has spent many more hours working on the boat and knows her inside and out.
With lovely spring weather forecasted, we decided we might as well take a mini-shakedown cruise. Mini, as in we only went 4 nautical miles across Fishers Island Sound to West Harbor for two nights and three days. If anything went wrong, we were close enough to home to get help.
On that short crossing we were hailed on the VHF by another Kadey Krogen, Gratitude, who saw us on their AIS. Al and Roberto chatted while they passed in front of us. Roberto and Rosa were on their way home to Rhode Island after their winter in the south. Kind of cool that our first venture the season finds us chatting with another Kadey Krogen. It’s a close knit group.
Entering West Harbor I always look towards the house with a sea wall spelling out “Where The Wild Things Are” I love that, but over the years, the words have faded quite a bit. I could barely make it out this time. I wish someone would repaint the words. I wish I know why they were painted in the first place. Must be a good story.
We picked up a mooring and enjoyed the afternoon, warmest day of the week.
Until …… It was a Wednesday evening so it was race time out in Fishers Island Sound.
Although a little cooler, the morning was lovely again.
More shakedowns – dinghy time. This is an entirely new routine for us. For all of our years sailing, we always had davits on the stern for the dinghy. Krogens usually have a hoist system up on the flybridge and the dinghy is kept there. There are pros and cons to both approaches. With davits, the dinghy is easy to drop into the water quickly, but, it makes the transom nearly impossible to access when the dinghy is there. A dinghy up on the flybridge is out of the way of the transom, but, it takes much longer to drop it into the water and put it back up on the bridge. With practice we hope to become efficient at the process because we need the access on the transom for boarding.
Next it was time to check out the dinghy’s engine. Uh oh. This is not good. The Yamaha engine won’t start. (And this is why we are having a mini-shakedown cruise.) Al begins working on it.
Happy news!! Mary Jo and Dean are riding over on Jallao for their little shakedown and a visit.
Then it was time for the next part of the shakedown – a dinghy ride for me. Since the dinghy and engine had been tested earlier, I guess this was a shakedown for me. This is our new aluminum bottom dinghy bought last year just before the pandemic raised its ugly head. It is smaller and lighter than any of the old ones we had. Last year, I could not get into it. My back just wouldn’t let me bend down comfortably and safely. The staples that Al added to the transom made it so easy to get in and out.
No amazing sunsets either evening, but Mother Nature was still generous with a pretty and tranquil water view.
We enjoyed another night and morning before heading back to SYC.
√ Over all, a successful mini-shakedown cruise.