Sunday, September 13, 2009

The annual race to Moose Bay takes place on the September long weekend. It is about a 25 mile race, we leave on Saturday morning, we have a pot luck supper on Sunday night and then race back to Yellowknife on Monday. This year we had spectacular sailing, I was asked to crew on a Catalina 27, the boat that I wanted to buy 10 years ago. We had a blast, the boat's theoretical hull speed is 6.2 knots and we were hitting 7.9 regularly, we were flying. We won the leg on the way out as the wind was behind us most of the way. We arrived in just over 4 hours and 20 minutes which is the fastest time ever for me. We left at 0900 hours so we had the rest of the day to enjoy ourselves once we arrived.

I spent the rest of the day berry picking, finding tons of cranberries and some rose hips. The next day I spent the afternoon fishing and managed to snag a very small jack. It is the first fish I have caught, with a rod, for quite some time so I was happy. The poor fish was not pleased as he got snagged in the net but he lived to tell the tale and hopefully grow to become supper in a few more years. We had a wonderful afternoon, first we spotted a bear, he was a good size and was munching down on the berries we had been helping ourselves to the day before. Then a short time later Jacky noticed an otter swimming about in the weeds that we were scouring for jacks. The sleek animal's head just broke the surface as he headed down the bay. An eagle was majestically soaring about checking us out every once in awhile. We saw wildlife on the land, on the water and in the air, I caught a fish and the pot luck was to die for, life does not get much better than that!
The next day we awoke to a very sullen sky, the clouds were full of rain, but the front has switched the wind and we were going to race home with the wind at our backs again, what luck. There is one very fast boat in the fleet and we followed along in his wake until he disappeared into the mist. We held our own until we turned to sail the 12 miles up the bay to Yk and the wind was on our nose. We made it all the way without having to tack but we were not heavy enough to cut the waves, although we reefed early, the gusts kept slowing us down, I guess we should have rolled in more foresail, we ended up third. The rain was with us most of the way home, we both changed in mid race as our lower bodies were soaked to the skin. Once we were close hauled it became a bit harder to ignore the rain as it pelted into your face as you were peering ahead to see your course. I never felt really cold though and we were only 17 minutes slower on the way home so even though it was wet it was a fast race. The comforts of a tub full of hot water once I got in the apartment were very much appreciated.
I froze the cranberries, we will enjoy them all winter, the rose hips once again made a lovely syrupy jelly. Whenever I need a Vitamin C boost I will cook up a batch of pancakes or just pour some in a smoothy.
Hardy Northern Raspberries