On to the Hudson and back to being a sailboat

We have spent the last two nights at Hop-o-nose Marina, putting up the mast and getting the boat back together ready to head out on to the Atlantic coast in a few days.

The Hudson is still a commercial water way, we saw ships and barges in the short section we came down on Monday, this one is big enough to have helicopter pad on its cargo hatch.


Part of the cruising life is traveling in the company of others and making new friends.  We left Loyalist Cove in the company of Brad and Julie on Estrella Del Sur and we have seen them at a couple of stops, including here in Hop-o-nose.  We met a couple of other crews including RC Wings who are also joining the Caribbean 1500.  With the natural common ground of boat issues there is always lots to talk about.  I think we are going to make lots of friends on this trip.


Yesterday morning our mast went up with the help of the old crane.  As ever the process was painless and perhaps a little safer than the last time we were here.

We had a busy couple of days, but the boat is ready to go in the morning.  We will be in Sandy Hook, south of NYC by Saturday afternoon.


Canal Leg done

We enjoyed a leisurely, fine-weather motor down the Oswego and Erie Canals this week.  With stops in Oswego, Phoenix, Sylvan Beach, Little Falls, Fonda and Waterford we took our time on all but the last day.

Here are a few random pics.


The green paper is our permit to be on the canal for 10 days, at $50, it is quite the bargain.



Kinship at Phoenix, we liked this stop a lot, docked next to a nice park with WiFi.  A coffee shop  a few meters down the street made it all the better.


We saw a few housed where the front faced the canal, some were very impressive.


The Mohawk Valley forms a natural path for the canal, Interstate 90 follows a similar path as does a major railroad line.

2016-09-14-12-25-29 Here a canal worker fishes on his lunch break.  He is in a strange aquatic manlift, we have never seen one like it.


High school rowers heading down the canal


What looks to be a house near Schenectady, wonder how lives there?


We were the last boat of the day to go through the locks at Waterford, here you can see the guard gate being closed behind us to mark the end of the day.


Here is Kinship on the right at the end of the trip.  The leg from Fonda to Waterford might be all downhill, but locks can be hard when it is windy.  We had a long day and were glad to get tied up at the canal wall.  This morning we moved over to the visitors center on the left where we have power and water and a pump out.  Tomorrow we will head out down the Hudson to Hop-o-nose to get the mast put back up and Kinship will be a sail boat again.

Lastly here is Pete Seeger singing the Erie Canal Song, it dates from the building of the current canal and the demise of mule drawn barges as the new canal has no towpath.


A later edit – The Shards have published their segment on the route we took, one day we will be able to sail and film…

And they’re off!


And none too soon, apparently. Last week’s heat wave broke, and we had to find long pants, socks and shoes, and jackets for our early morning departure today.


Everyone has been asking where exactly we are going, so Matthew pulled together this map that shows the route, including the major highlights. Clicking on the push-pins will tell you where we are going next, and when we expect to be there.

There are several components to the trip. We start by crossing Lake Ontario from Kingston/Bath Ontario, where we have been finalizing some last-minute preparations at Loyalist Cove Marina. Thanks to the gang there and their hard work, we are right on schedule. Although we were ready to leave on Saturday September 10th, we were delayed by the bad weather, so we set sail to Oswego NY today, Monday September 12th at 0600 hrs..

Oswego marks the start of the Canal leg of the trip. Last year when we were did this trip in reverse to bring Kinship home we were on a tight timeline and had to race through the canal. We felt we missed a lot that way, so this year we will be taking our time and enjoying the points of interest (and of course, the coffee shops) along the way. We have given ourselves two weeks to do what we did in one last time, motoring down the canal to the Hudson River, then sailing on to NYC.

The next leg of the trip will be on the ocean, travelling down the New Jersey Coast, around Cape May and into Delaware Bay. That will be about 36 hours straight sailing, so we have lined up a couple of extra crew members from a crew bank, to help with the watches. After an overnight to rest up, a quick day-sail through the D&C Canal and down Chesapeake Bay will bring us to Annapolis in time for the Annapolis Boat Show. We loved that show two years ago, and are excited about returning for the seminars and ideas. We will get to meet up with the team from the Caribbean 1500 Rally, and of course drop a pile of money with the vendors!

After the boat show, another day-sail will take us back to Zahniser’s marina in Solomon’s Island Maryland, where we bought Kinship. We will haul her out for a bottom-cleaning and final inspection before sailing to Portsmouth VA to join up with the other 40 or so Rally boats.

The ocean crossing from Portsmouth to Tortolla BVI is scheduled to start November 2nd or thereabouts (weather dependent). It should take is between 10-15 days of straight sailing to get there. For this leg we will be joined by our highly trained and qualified crew members, Lisa and Paul (see our July 18th blog Shakedown Cruise). Sure hope we get a little more wind this next time!


After the round of arrival parties in Tortola, we are on our own, and will decide when and where we go next. We have roughly six months to explore the Caribbean. Our tentative plans are to sail south down the Leeward Islands, stopping at various islands along the way whenever we like what we see.  When we run out of time we will head back north to Tortola to launch the trip back home. We have to be out of the hurricane zone by the end of May, so we expect to arrive back in the USA around then, go back up the Canal and spend the summer sailing in our own back yard, exploring the Great Lakes.

That sums up the “One Year Plan” as it currently stands. Of course, the great part about being retired is that we are free to change those plans on the fly. So keep watching to see how  our “Great Adventure 2016-2017” unfolds!