As we drove down to Shenny on Friday, July 7th we had already decided that we were going to Three Mile Harbor on Saturday to anchor out overnight. It was going to be a nice weekend and it looked like we would have some wind for sailing.
We wanted to catch slack tide at the Race so we left before the wind picked up and motored for an hour, but eventually the breeze started filling in so we turned off Thumper and settled in for a nice sail. As we sailed past Gardiner’s Island, the wind increased from the predicted 10-12 to a steady 18 knots and the water was getting choppy but we were quite comfortable on a beam reach. That day we learned something new about Pegu Club. When the wind hits 18 close hauled she definitely needs a reef, but it’s not necessary on a beam reach. Good to know.
The only problem with our sporty sail was that we were going to need to make a 45 degree turn to port and then sail straight for several more miles to Three Mile Harbor. Where was the wind coming from? Why the port of course.
Turning into the wind, the 18 knot wind and choppy water made itself known. We had a few choices. We could spend several hours tacking back and forth or we could turn on Thumper. We chose the latter, but when we turned on the engine so Jeff could drop the sails, poor Thumper (who only rates 12 hp when she was new) could only make 2 knots at cruising speed between the waves, the wind, and the current. “Hmmm, this is going to suck”, I thought.
“Hey Jeff!” “What?” “We could beat into this crap for the next several hours or we could turn around and enjoy a nice beam reach back towards the Race, then a great downwind sail back to Shenny.” Jeff looked around, thought about it for a second, and said “That sounds good to me!”.
And that’s exactly what we did. We checked to make sure that the current at the Race wasn’t going to be a problem, raised the sails again, turned around, and had a lovely sail back, surfing down the small waves as we sailed towards the Race. Almost 28 nautical miles later, we backed into our slip, shut everything down, and had a good laugh. It was a long sail to nowhere, but it had been a lovely day. We’ll try Three Mile Harbor again some other time.