Friday, July 31, 2009

Cuttyhunk to Freeport, Maine

Well, after Martha's Vinyard we sailed over to Cuttyhunk, the last island in the Elizabeth island chain, and spent the day. We had fun hiking the island and then going to the beach for rock throwing challenges. Dakota loves to rock scramble.
Hike on the rocky beach.
Taking a break
We then went to South Dartmouth to meet us with our friend Lauren and Cary and their two kids, Max and Milo. They were staying with their friend Jenn, in the middle.
The four boys.
The kids made a dam together
We then sailed through the Cape Cod canal and up to Provincetwon, MA. These pictures are widows looking out for their husbands to come home from sea.
They built a 1/2 sized boat in the library.
We met up with our friend Pat and John there and spent a day with them.
They kindly towed us to our boat with our groceries!
Our next stop was Gloucester, a fishing town. On our way we saw humpback whales!!

Alistair mastering the monkey bars
A cool sculpture of an artist
Then we went to the Isle of Shoals, which is a group of islands in New Hampshire and Maine. One island, Star, has a big hotel and retreat center and lots of trails, some of this island is open to the public to explore.
Another island, Smuttynose, is privately owned but open to the public as an historical site where a famous murder happened 100 years ago.
The harbor at sunset. The next morning we set sail for Casco bay and made it in late, then on to Freeport the following morning. We've been in Freeport for one week and plan to move back to the house tomorrow! We plan on continuing the blog from home so keep on visiting!

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Martha's Vinyard

We spent 7 days on Martha's Vinyard anchored in Lake Tashmoo, a lovely well protected anchorage close to Vinyard haven or Tisbury. We had a great time on the island! We took the bus all over, played on the beach, walked among the old captain's houses and admired a variety of boats in the harbors. Dakota and I on the beach in Tisbury
The road leading down to the dock in Lake Tashmoo.
Aquinnah cliffs from a look out. These cliffs are visible as you sail in Rhode Island sound towards Buzzard's bay.
Dakota looking at the lighthouse.
That same day we went to a town called Menemsha and the kids went crabbing with many other kids and had a ball!
More crabs!
Statue in Menemsha
The crab was this big!! Crabbing in Tisbury, they caught maybe 30 crabs!

Many of the towns on the Vinyard are very old and have a long history of fishing and whaling, therefore they have old captain's houses with widows walks. These are balconies on the roof where the wife of a sailor would go to look out to sea and see if her husband was returning.
Some of the garden's were lovely, many houses are planted with hydrangas and daisys and many other perennials.
The path to the lighthouse and beach.These roses grow wild here!

Edgartown's waterfront
Charles relaxing in front of the Whaling Church
Pillars of the Whaling Church in Edgartown. They are made of wood, the whole building is classic New England architecture.
Our last day we met a lovely couple, John and Pat, sailing on Remedy their nonesuch 30. They had us for cocktails and we all loved them. This in Pat with Alistair.
All in all we loved MV. it was a definite highlight for me this whole trip. A perfect blend of quaint towns, very friendly people, interesting history, crabbing for the kids and of course there was Lake Tashmoo.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Woods Hole

We travelled from Watch Hill in Rhode Island where we had spent the fourth to Cuttyhunk in the Elizabeth islands of Cape Cod.

NOAA had predicted light winds instead we got 25 knots and by the end of the day 6 foot seas. Not a problem as it was behind us and it was taking us fast to our destination but our dinghy was surfing down the waves hard enough to hit the boat and then get jerked as the Alice took the slack of the line up. It was enough to damage the painter attachment point.

We played with how much line we let out to stop the surfing but by then the damage was done. In retrospect we should have put the dinghy on deck but had expected light winds so didn't. Lesson learned..

We spent a windy night anchored in the outside harbor of Cuttyhunk and then left early to meet up with our friends Josh and Naomi and their kids Yacob and Jasmine. Josh and Naomi summer in Woods Hole where their family has a summer place. We anchored on the Buzzard's Bay side just in front of their association beach. Was really great, the kids played and swam hunted for creatures and got along really well.

Meanwhile Josh helped me fix the dinghy. They very kindly gave us the tour of the local area including the aquarium and part of the institute's tanks which house everything from Fiddler crabs to squid, lobster, dogfish and much more. Definitely a highlight. We also heard and participated in local folk singing on Tuesday nights a Wood's hole tradition for over 40 years.

Here the kids are setting up a trap to catch fish in Eel pond. One of the local restaurants nicely donated their old bread to the kids.

Here is one of the touch tanks at the institute, Josh is handling a blue lobster. Great stuff for the kids and us.

We spent a few days there with many excursions into town, here the kids are playing soccer at Josh and Naomi's place.

We left Wood's Hole with the end of the current as it rips through theWoods Hole cut. Josh, Naomi and kids joined us for the sail to Martha's Vineyard, where they planned to return via ferry later in the day.

Josh cranking in the Yankee.

Naomi and Jasmine up forward.

We all took the bus to Oak Bluffs, and then went to the Flying Horses a merry go round carousel where you have the additional challenge of trying to grab small rings as you go around. If you get a brass ring you get to ride again. The kids really dug this.

Here is Dakota trying to get a ring. It looks static here in the picture but when the carousel is moving right along its pretty exciting!

The horses are all antiques, you stack your rings on a rod on top of the horse's head.

Of course there was ice cream. This is the "kiddy size" in Oak Bluffs.

In Oak Bluffs there is a section of town that is all Ginger Bread cottages, these started in 1835 as tents where people would get together for religous congregations. Apparently these were huge events with each mainland church having it's own tent. Over time these tents got roofs and eventually evolved to these cottages. They are arranged in a semicircle around an area called the Tabernacle where the preaching happened.

All in all we had an excellent time with Olins-Beal family, thanks for the great time guys!