Wednesday, August 23, 2006

We managed to find our way into Coos Bay, Oregon, with the help of the Coast Guard. After sailing all day we were approaching Coos Bay in the dark when we heard another sailboat contact the Coast Guard and request that they come out and help him find his way into the harbour. We probably wouldn’t have asked ourselves but since the Coast Guard was going to help someone in we decided we would join the procession into the harbour.
It was pretty harrowing, all the lights were very confusing in the dark you have no idea how far away you are from things and there are blinking red and green lights all over the place and shore lights that don’t have anything to do with the navigation are shining away. Then it got really rolly and the boat was tossing around from side to side in the dark and you can’t see the waves coming so you can brace yourself, then the Coast Guard guy is on the radio giving very helpful, but long detailed instructions about where you should go and what you should follow, I would remember about the first two instructions to tell Barry and then the following five would be gone forever from my memory. We followed the other sailboat that was following the Coast Guard boat and eventually got into the harbour safe and sound. I know it would have been a lot more nerve racking than it was if they hadn’t been around to help us.
We found out why the spinnaker ended up in the water yesterday. The end of the halyard (the line that pulls the sail up and down) attached to the top of the spinnaker had frayed in two, not a good thing. We pulled the other end out of the mast and will have to use our spare halyard until we get this one fixed. The thing that is perplexing is what caused the chafe, the halyard on the main sail in chaffing as well, but just not so quickly.
We spent the day washing and drying out the spinnaker and its sock, we had to get all the salt water off of them and then figure out how they could be dried. The spinnaker is a huge sail, the biggest that we have, fortunately it is relatively light so isn’t too heavy. We draped it all over the boat until it looked like the boat was wrapped in nylon. I think we will be spending more time here because they are predicting 35 knots and we aren’t keen to go out in that.
The dock we are moored at is full of fish boats and sail boats and the chief entertainment seems to be crabbing off the dock. People make a day of it, they come down to the dock with their lawn chairs, their picnic lunch and their crab nets. There were 2 older couples from Arizona here today; apparently they come here in the summer to get away from the heat. We talked to the crew of the other sailboats that are docked here as well as a deck hand on a 75 foot fishing boat that is going to Alaska. We bought a fresh tuna from one of the fish boats and Barry marinated it in a honey, mustard marinade and cooked up part of it for dinner. It was yummy, that was the first time we have cooked and eaten fresh tuna, and we have a lot more of it to figure out what to do with. I am thinking tuna casserole, or company. Hope all is well with everyone.