Friday, October 23, 2009

Friday, September 19, 2008

Friday, August 10, 2007

Sunday, November 12, 2006

SeaFair, Argggggg

SeaFair was the target of this trip. Dave, Mike and I got ready to move the boat from Tacoma to Seattle. It was a long motor up Clovis Pass with flat seas and no wind. To pass the time, the AIR CHAIR came out as the autopilot took over and keep us headed north. When we finally cleared Clovis Pass abeam Blake Island the north wind kicked up. We did get a good sail in making 4 large tacks into Elliott bay and back out around West Point to the entrance of the Ballard locks. It was getting dark as we motored passed Shilshole marina and right over some fishing nets that were blocking the entrance to the locks. With Dave at the helm, he maid the decision to take the boat out of gear and make a quick U turn. It worked and we harmlessly rad over the nets. The fisherman were not amused though. It was dark when we finally entered the locks.The Hiram M. Chittenden Locks are in Seattle's Lake Washington Ship Canal.
The locks serve to maintain the water level of Lake Washington and Lake Union at 20.6 feet above Puget Sound's mean low tide and to move boats from the water level of the lakes to the water level of Puget Sound, and vice versa. It was a long wait to enter the locks and make the trip up 20 feet. Once clear of the locks we went on to Fishermen's Terminal to tie up for the night.

The boat had to stay at the terminal a few days while we did a week of work. Once back on Friday it was time to go. We had four draw bridges to go under to make our way through Lake Union and into Lake Washington. There was not much wind so we had to motor all the way around Mercer Island. Hoku Pa’a has a 43 foot mast and cannot make it under the majority of the bridges in Seattle. It actually was getting hot, so I did a little aqua man. It is not quite water skiing, but then again we are only moving 5 kts. It was a long motor around Mercer Island in Lake Washington, but the weather was great.
We made it around the south end of the island just in time to find a place to anchor in Andrews bay. This is the only place that you are aloud to anchor in Seattle and it was like a parking lot.
The grill and drinks came out and Dave and I even got up to taking a warm bath in the lake. Early the next morning we were kicked out of our quiet anchorage by the coast guard. They said that everybody neede to be clear of the area for the Blue Angles. We took this time to motor down to Renton to pick up more people. Around noon we got back with a full load of people to the area behind the log boom. On one side of the boom was the Hydroplane Boat races and on the other, hundreds of boats.
The blue angles did an air show and fun was had by all.

Monday, May 22, 2006

March 12, 2006

Sometimes it is a little hard to find a crew to go out in February or March. Today was an exception. I was anxious to go out and play with my newly installed autopilot. Janelle agreed to go out on cloudy and cool afternoon. We motored out of Tyee about 3:00pm and set the sails. We were hardly doing two knots when we were surprised by a pod of dolphins. For the next ten minutes we were treated to a water show on the bow of the boat.
As the sun got a little lower on the horizon, I could hear Janelle's teeth start to clatter so I thought it best to head home. She went to sleep to the purr of the Atomic 4 as we headed home. Not bad for a winter sail.

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Eagle Island II - Sep 15, 2005

We awoke to a spectacular sun rise and an island that was much larger at low tide. The shore line was about 40 feet larger and was covered with seals and sea lions. There were at least 60 seals all hanging out on the beach sunning. After a hearty breakfast we rowed back to Eagle Island and walked around rocky shore making friends with the wildlife. We were shocked to see another island to the west of Eagle now sticking up in the low tide. We later found that this is Eagle Reef. Originally the islands were known as the Peppercorns, Tom and Ned. After returning to the boat we got under way. It was decided that we would take the long way home around Anderson Island. Oro Bay, on the east side of Anderson Island was a great stop. This is the home of a small yacht club and the Ocean City. This is an old ferry that is being restored on the island. The bay is very protected and is home to many small boats anchored in the calm waters. After leaving the bay it was off under the bridge again. We were able to sail back to Tyee after rounding Point Defiance in Tacoma. We pulled into Tyee about 6:30 pm. It was a great trip.

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Eagle Island - Sep 14, 2005

At 11:45am Sean and I shoved off of Tyee with light winds and cloudy skies. The temperature was about 50 degrees and the boat was packed for the night. We started off west bound looking for the flood tide. Puget Sound has one of the largest tides in the US and the currents squeeze through the Tacoma Narrows to flood into the south sound. We timed the tide to pass under the bridge and get the best push we could. The Tacoma Narrows Bridge is a mile-long suspension bridge with a main span of 2800 foot (the third-largest in the world when it was first built) that carries Washington State Route 16 across the Tacoma Narrows of Puget Sound from Tacoma to Gig Harbor, Washington. The original bridge became famous for a dramatic filmed structural collapse in 1940. The replacement bridge opened in 1950. Construction of a new span, which will run parallel to the current bridge, began on October 4, 2002, and is scheduled to be completed in 2007. As we turned south west under the bridge the push really kicked in. Hoku Pa'a will do about 6kts under power and we were showing 11.5kts on the GPS. As we ripped south, Sean served a lunch of wraps and apples. Our wind dropped of around 2:30pm and the tide was calming down. Sean and I amused ourselves by hoisting each other to the top of the mast in his "airchair".We got some great pictures from the 45 feet up and the day was warming up to around 65 degrees. After a few hours of drifting on the tide we started up the engine and passed McNeil Island. The United States government bought land on McNeil Island in 1870 and opened a prison for Washington Territory there in 1875. It became a federal penitentiary when Washington became a state in 1889. Washington state took over the penitentiary from the federal government in 1981. It is now called McNeil Island Corrections Center. According to the state, it is the only facility in the U.S. to have been a territorial, federal, and state prison, and is the only prison left in North America that is only accessible by boat or air. As we approached eagle from the south circled around to the northwest. Eagle island is 10 acres and is a Washington State Marine Park. Sean and I tied off to one of three public mooring buoys and pumped up the dinghy. We rowed the short distance to the island and took a walk around the 2,600 feet of shore line. It was high tide and we had to duck under trees and walk in the water much of the way. There are many trails criss crossing the island but after reading a warning about poison oak we decided to stay off the overgrown trails. Eagle island was once a Indian burial ground where burial canoes were placed in trees around the island. After our exploration of the island we went back to the boat for an evening sail around the island and dinner.