Never believe the weather forecasts….including marine weather forecasts

Dad at the helm
Dad at the helm

From Murray Harbor in PEI we zigzagged across the Northumberland Strait to get a couple more sailing days in and increase our chances of seeing whales. Many seal and dolphin sightings, but no whales on this trip ūüôĀ

However, we had an amazing day of sailing southwest in the the strait! Waves were low, the west winds were ideal for a close reach the entire way, and we really got to feel how Tortuga moves. Dad even took a turn at the helm.

 

Pictou Harbor

We anchored¬†the previous night in a coastal town named¬†Pictou back on the Nova Scotia side. It is apparently the birthplace of New Scotland. On display is a replica of the Hector, which carried the first immigrants from Scotland to North America in the 1700’s. The main street has tartan flags¬†of all the clans from Scotland who settled there. We never found Stewart. We grabbed a late lunch/early dinner at one of the local restaurants, with a great view ūüėČ and dinghy’d¬†back to the boat. The winds shifted to the north at night, as expected. ¬†We got a great view of the sunset from the stern of the boat.

View from lunch/dinner
View from lunch/dinner
Entering Charlottetown
Entering Charlottetown
Entering Charlottetown

The next morning (yesterday) the marine weather forecast predicted winds returning back to a west/southwest wind at 9-12 knots with gust up to 15-17 knots and waves around¬†0.8 meters. ¬†Were we in for a surprise… as as we exited out of the wind protected harbor/bay entrance, we were hit with¬†a northwest wind that was more like¬†double the predicted wind speed. We faced more like 18 knots of wind with gusts up to 25 knots and big waves! ¬†The only other boat we saw in the strait was the ferry that transits from Wood’s Island, PEI to Caribou, Nova Scotia. We were happy once we entered the Charlottetown Bay. ¬†The winds were still brisk but the waves were much smaller and manageable. ¬†What started out to be an easy jaunt turned out to be a long day of hard sailing.¬†We had a very nice welcome from some relatives of Eric who were¬†born and raised on PEI. We found a good local seafood restaurant to replenish us, too.

Tortuga is¬†now tied up to a slip in Charlottetown, PEI. She’ll be here for a few days before she continues her next journey up the St. Lawrence Seaway. We’ve cleaned her up, written down detailed¬†instructions, and prepped her to take on new guests. It is somewhat like sending a child to camp, as we are having a delivery captain sail her into the Great Lakes in the next few weeks. The summer¬†is rapidly coming to an end and Eric’s and my schedules are¬†becoming pretty hectic, such that the hope of us getting her to Chicago before the lakes freeze necessitates us to hire someone to move her along when we can’t. ¬†Tortuga’s adventure continues…