Monday, July 28, 2014

Anchoring in Juanita Bay

Juanita Bay

Sunset from Juanita Bay
We had not been away from the dock for an overnight in a long while. Our lives have been busy with boat upgrades, various projects, and just a general business that kept us at the dock. We had planned this outing for a few weeks, having finally had a free weekend to get away.

Kerry really enjoyed the trip. There wasn't much to do once we had the hook set and lunch made. She was very very good at doing nothing that afternoon. It's a skill set worth mastering.

Happy, pretty girl relaxing in the cockpit.

The new kite.

This trip was to serve a few purposes.

A new sail was the first. We had recently purchased a used (very new used actually) Asymmetrical Cruising Spinnaker. We've needed to add this sail to our inventory and a new one was going to be about $4,000. This one was the correct size, had the accessories we wanted and was much, much less. We had picked it up a couple weekends ago but hadn't flown it yet. This trip was to use the expected light airs to fly the chute and see if it met our expectations. Well, it exceeded them. There was one problem. The previous owner had rigged it backwards (tack and clew swapped). I didn't know that until we got it aloft. Fortunately I was able to swap the tack and clew while underway and all was right with the world.  The sail drew well, giving us 2.5 knots of boat speed in less than 5 knots of wind. It's just what Brigadoon needs to move in light airs.

Love this thing. Love it.

The second was the get away from the dock and practice anchoring again.  By the way, this Ultra anchor rocks. It bit into the mud bottom and held extremely well, but was easy to retrieve. I have no regrets spending the money on this premium anchor.

The third, the realization of which came later, was increasing our sense of confidence again in Brigadoon. We re-familiarized ourselves with our anchor, and our skill sets. Brigadoon ran extremely well, both on the leg out and the return trip. The engine fired right off and ran smoothly the entire trip. I didn't notice any reduction in our boat speed, as expected, due to weed growth on the hull. The hull must be cleaner than I thought. I'm glad we moor if fresh water right now.

The main salon, lit by lamp light.

We spent a very quiet evening, relaxing and reading to each other. Our current book is about the story of the Essex, a whaling ship that was destroyed by a sperm whale in the 1800's. It served as the inspiration for Melville's Moby Dick.

Observations from our night at anchor in Juanita Bay:
  • Powerboats attract a certain demographic; mostly white, mostly male, mostly young along with little girls in bikinis.
  • Alcohol seems to be heavily involved in this recreational pursuit.
  • Rap music seems popular with the white guys. I recall hearing the strains of a rapper singing something along the lines of, "bitches be sucking my dick," or some such throughout the afternoon, emanating from various wake boats. 
  • Some power boaters think it's perfectly fine to use a 42' long anchored sailboat as turning point (sometimes all 360 degrees) when towing wake boards and generating huge wakes.
  • Other power boaters think we could have seen their two girls having hot girl on girl something, or just nude sunbathing, on the cabin sole of their wake boat. We couldn't as we passed by but, it was amusing to watch the ladies scramble to sit up and get their bikini tops secured.
  • Personally, I don't understand the practice of tearing through a collection of anchored boats at 40+ knots with kayaks and paddle boats all over the bay.
  • In the evening 99% of the power boats leave.
  • In the morning it's dead quiet.
  • By 0930 hrs, the power boats and the gansta rap blaring from their speakers, returns.
The night we spent in Juanita bay was characterized by boaters like this.  They would start at the beach, a half mile away, and tear through the anchorage to Lk. Washington -- in speeds frequently exceeding 30 knots. The anchorage was full of paddle boarders, swimmers, kids and families on smaller boats.

In spite of this stupidity on the part of some power boaters, it was a great overnight. Brigadoon is a good boat. We have a great anchor. Kerry suggested we come back in the fall, when the water is cold, the temperatures much cooler and all the wake boards are safely put to bed on shore. I think this is a capital idea. 

Getting there early and having absolutely nothing to do but nap and relax was exactly what we needed and good practice for the future.