We took delivery of our new American Tug 395 Esmeralde on April 1st, 2017, so she will forever be our April Fool’s Girl. (This year, she was also our Easter Girl.) In order to celebrate, Bruce got her winter cover off on Saturday so on Sunday April 1st, her birthday, we could have a little celebration on-board and herald the start of her second season. It turned into a bright sunny day, perfect to enjoy being aboard again. Continue reading Happy 1st Birthday Esmeralde!
This trip to Florida was essentially un-planned, so we had no reservations other than one we made in Key West a year ago. We had made the reservation because we could cancel it without penalty, so why not? Now, although Key West isn’t actually our favorite destination on the planet, it’s not so bad in February so to-Key-West-we-will-go.
The Keys were hit hard by Hurricane Irma last fall and we were curious about how they had fared. Continue reading Florida Keys after Hurricane Irma
We have only cruised through Muscongus Bay once before, almost 20 years ago on our the first Esmeralde, the little Able Whistler 32. I remember it as being a little bit of a hairy experience. It was thick thick thick fog, we were navigating with a new GPS, and the screen was indeed a chart, but it was about 2″ x 3″, black and white, and didn’t have a lot of pixels. We didn’t have radar. How things have changed. Continue reading Maine Cruise – Days 22 – 24 – Muscongus & Boothbay
We set out from Buck’s Harbor with a typical Maine forecast: FOG. Make that RAIN and FOG. It was clear enough getting through the harbor entrance, but then it socked in thick and stayed locked-on. While I’ve done this for days on end in a sailboat, often with nothing but a dodger for some shelter, I can’t help but admit that being in a warm and dry pilot house was rather civilized. Two large nav monitors, radar zoomed in, zoomed out. And a Very Big Horn. It was not a bad ride. As usual, the lobster buoys commanded rather intense focus and tracking the numerous lobster boats cruising around like drunken flies was challenging, but in the end, Maine is Maine and FOG is part of the territory. Continue reading Maine Cruise – Days 20 – 21 – Rockland
After our visit to the wild woodlands of Isle au Haut, it was time to head back to civilization. Off to one of our favorite hang-outs, the home of Lifestyles of the Rich & Famous, Northeast Harbor on Mount Desert Island, and also home of the spectacular Acadia National Park and the tourist mecca, Bar Harbor. Continue reading Maine Cruise – Days 15 – 18 – Northeast Harbor & Mt. Desert
Our visit to Wooden Boat ended in a very special way. We had a morning visit from the crew of the American Tug Ancient Mariners, which had also spent the evening at Wooden Boat. Always interested in something new and different, they came by in the morning to see our Tug. Continue reading Maine Cruise – Days 13-14 – Merchant Row & Isle Au Haut
After three nights in Camden we were ready to shove off and explore. The weather was not playing our game. As we returned to the boat from walking the dogs in the morning, still tossing about different destination options, the fog settled in as thick as ever. Our last choice was to stay one more day to wait out the weather, but several phone calls later we knew that was not an option: Camden was booked solid. We had to go. Fog or not. Continue reading Maine Cruise – Days 10-12 – Belfast & Wooden Boat