Saturday, September 5, 2009

Green Bay

Saturday, September 5

Just a quick update, Thursday we had a nice day and travelled from Washington Island to Menominee. The skies were clear and the winds light. In the afternoon we walked from the marina to a nice sand beach just outside the breakwater.

Yesterday was another good weather day, glassy flat water to finish our summer. We got to Green Bay about 1:30. Arrangements are all set for the work to be done on the boat and it will be hauled out on Tuesday as soon as we leave, to go into heated winter storage.

I have a flight out this morning to get the van and expect to be back in Green Bay tomorrow afternoon. We will clean and pack up on Monday and drive Home on Tuesday.

I think Diana has some pictures, I will add them to this post later.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Headed for Home

Wednesday, September 02

After talking it over and checking on options last night and this morning, we have decided to end our journey this year early. Instead of continuing on to St Charles, MO to put the boat in winter storage there we are headed for Green Bay and have made arrangement to store the boat there this winter.

Tomorrow we will go from Washington Island to Menominee MI; then on Friday we will go on to Green Bay. Over the weekend I will fly to St Louis and retrieve the van we left in St Charles. I will drive back to Green Bay where we will pack up our gear and on Tuesday turn the boat over to Harborside Yacht Center for them to store the boat for the winter .

There were several reasons for the decision, a few of which include, both of us having had plenty of time on the water, the ongoing problem with the fish barrier on the Illinois River, two less than pleasant days on Lake Michigan with the prospect of about seven more.

If you are interested in the problems the fish barrier has caused on the boating public check this web page. The short story is you have to get off your boat and have a commercial towing company tow it a half mile through the fish barrier.

We will decide this winter what we will do next year. The current options are to re-launch the boat and continue the trip including up the Mississippi to St Paul (about 1200 miles of water) or to have it trucked to St Paul (about 275 miles). There may also be other options to consider.

With all that arranged, it was a beautiful day here on Washington Island. It was clear skies and light winds with a temperature in the low 70s. We went for a walk and saw some a pretty rural area. The marina has a restaurant and we had dinner there, it was excellent.

I don’t know when I will have both internet access and time for another entry. It may not be until we are home sometime next week.

Detroit Harbor, Washington Island (Door County)

Tuesday, September 1

The weather looked like another fine day, so we were up and out of the Manistique Marina early, (7:30) and headed south. Although the wind was light and forecasted to remain fairly light there were significant left over swells from yesterdays winds.

We punched into them for the first couple of hours but they settled down as the morning went by. They produced more motion then we like but it was nowhere as bad as yesterday. By late morning it had become a beautiful day on the water.

Our destination today was Washington Island which is a short ferry ride north of the north end of Door County, Wisconsin. By mid-afternoon, (we gained an hour on a time zone) we were pulling into the Marina here in Detroit Harbor. The Island is a tourist destination, hopefully tomorrow we can do some sight seeing.

It was a good day of boating but not a lot to write about.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009


Monday, August 31

First an update on Sunday, as forecast Sunday was still windy, no day to travel. At least the skies had cleared and it was a nice day for a stroll around Mackinaw City. We had breakfast in town.

Then after lunch (when it warmed a little) we walked over to stroll thru Mackinaw Crossings. This is a new pedestrian plaza surrounded by shops. In the center is a fountain that feeds a stream that runs down to a pool at the far end.

Next to Mackinaw Crossings is a large waterfall that is part of an adventure golf center.

Across the street was a large arts and crafts show with 60 or 70 vendors in tents. Diana stroll the displays while I walked down to check the new state harbor marina. It is a beautiful new 130 slip facility that just opened the last week in July, very few boaters know it is here. We got another picture of the old icebreaker and Diana liked this fancy clock and flowers at the end of main (Central) street.

For my birthday dinner, Diana did individual chocolate cakes in the microwave. It is a receipt she saw last spring and made sure she had all the ingredients onboard. Who knew you could bake a cake in less than five minutes.

Now for Monday.

From Mackinaw we were looking at a long day somewhere to get to the west side of the lake. We decided that today looked like a good day to run straight west to Manistique. It would be 76 miles (almost ten hours) but a straight shot once we were under the bridge. The forecast was 5 to 10 NW going SW in the afternoon waves one foot or less, other than 45 degrees a good day.

We were off the dock by 7:30 and under the bridge just before 8:00. The prospect was for driving over 70 miles by compass. I can steer by the compass but it is much easier with a visual reference. As fortune would have it there was a freighter in front of us by about 3 miles, he was on our heading. He was just a little faster than we were but I was able to use him as a visual reference for 50 miles, he was just a spec but then slowed and finally turned north to go into Port Inland. It was only a couple more miles and I had a tower on shore near the Manistique Harbor entrance.

The weather was clear with the predicted 5 to 10 from the NW. About 1:00 it went to the SW as forecast, but instead of remaining 5 to 10 by 2:30 it had built to 15 to 20 and the waves were 2 to 3 feet. It was a very uncomfortable ride for the rest of the day; everybody hunkered down and made the best of it. Just before 5:00 we made the breakwater and on into the marina. Everyone was relieved to be tied up in calm waters.

At least now we are in a position to run down the Wisconsin shore. It will be one day from here to Washington Island at the north end of Door County, and then there are many harbors going down the coast.