Tuesday, August 3, 2010

The Long Sail to Frankfurt

It was an overcast morning with light showers at South Manitou Island Monday morning. We raised anchor after nine and headed toward our next destination, Frankfurt, Mi. The forecast was for southwest winds in the teens and 1-3 foot waves (near shore) or 4-6 foot waves (open water). It was much worse.

We had 20+ knot winds most of the way with 5-7 foot waves and a period of 4-8 footers. We saw several 10+ foot waves. You know a wave is big when you stand in the cockpit and look up as it goes by. What should have taken 5 hours took. It was a miserable ride.

To me, sailing in rough weather is like suffering through a hangover. If you sail (drink) enough you're bound to encounter it. You hate it while suffering and swear of sailing (drinking). As soon as it passes, you think it wasn't so bad and start to look forward to your next sail (drink).

We finally made it to Frankfurt. The only casualty was the CYC Cruising Sail Fleet burgee which came came untied from the flag halyard and is now in Lake Michigan somewhere.

I talked to several other boaters who were on the water today and all agreed the forecast did not accurately predict the weather on Lake Michigan. One group was trying to sail from Charlevoix to Door county and was diverted.

We had a nice dinner and had a few drinks before bed. While recounting the day's experience, each of us disliked different parts. Brian was fine the first half but started to feel queasy the second half. Dan hated evry minutes but shut up, venting heavily after we arrived. Bob tried to study but didn't get much done. I hated the first part but found encouragement after finding shelter behind Point Betsie and again after seeing the Frankfurt lighthouse.

A Beneteau 36.7 was motoring with us and, from watching him, the motion wasn't as severe as it felt. The reality is none of us enjoyed the sail down.

Tuesday we'll decide if we continue on or contine to recover.

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