Friday, September 5, 2008

Sandwich, MA east end of Cape Cod Canal

We left Scituate and motored for the first few hours before the wind came up enough to sail, but then it died and then it came up again! When we reached Sandwich, all we had up was a jib reefed to four marks (all the way) and a half furled mainsail and we were still making 7 kts, the wind was gusting in the 20's but coming off the land so there was very little wave action.

We refueled at Sandwich and found that the marina was going to be full for the passing of Hanna, luckily we had reservations for the next three days. When the canal was built, the area where the marina presently resides was dredged for a "Harbor of Refuge" so boaters had a secure area to ride out storms. However, a town marina eventually took over the area but with a condition from the Coast Guard that the marina maintain 21 docks for transients so the Harbor of Refuge could continue being used as such. The dockage fee is a very reasonable $2.50/ft, low for the area. Even so, it is still very much a working harbor with fishing boats going out everyday, some are quite colorful as in the photo.

Well, the big news is the predicted arrival of Hanna in the wee hours of Sunday morning. I've included a photo of the Ugrib display showing Hanna over Cape Cod. The odd looking things that resemble the feathers of an arrow are symbols showing the speed and direction of the wind. The "feathered end" points in the direction where the wind comes from. Every large feather is 10 kts so one with three slashes (or feathers) shows 30kts of wind. The display can be stepped in 1/2 hour increments up to 24 hour increments. We've found it to be more accurate than the Morning Lies since you can pinpoint your area of interest. Needless to say, we'll be watching the approach of Hanna closely tomorrow. You can see from the photo of the marina that it's somewhat below the level of the surrounding land since it had to be dug out when the Canal was built. We're hoping that the winds that actually reach our boat will be less due to sheltering by the higher land. We'll see if fact matches expectation or if it's just wishful thinking on Saturday night. Stay tuned, I'll send updates Saturday night and Sunday morning.