Monday, July 23, 2012

Small Reach Regatta 2012!

When young Dawn with her rose-red fingers shone once more,
they set sail for the main encampment of Achaea.
The Archer sent them a bracing following wind,
they stepped the mast, spread the white sails wide,
the wind hit full and the canvas bellied out
and a dark blue wave, foaming up at the bow,
sang out loud and strong as the ship made way,
                           skimming the whitecaps, cutting toward her goal.  (Illiad I:569-576, Fagles)

Intrepid readers, welcome.  This is the Small Reach Regatta 2012

It has been a year since the last Small Reach, and again we met this year at Lamoine State Park in Maine for several days of sailing, rowing, camaraderie, and all out awesome.

Day 1

This Small Reach was a momentous meet-up for Goat Island Skiffs with a total of three (3) boats sailing together simultaneously.  This is the first time this has happened, ever!  I am proud that I Am Zinea, Pterodactylus was part of this historic moment.  It was a damn cool feeling to be sailing with other boats of the same pedigree.

Moments before launch on Day 1  THREE GOATS
From left to right: Bleat, IAZP, Kathleen Marie
Happiness is Goat on water (Courtesy of Capn Jon)
The first day of the SRR was a sail out to Thomas Island, as shown below and marked by an "A".  Since this was launching day we spent some time milling around Lamoine (northeast of Thomas, marked in green) until most boats were launched.  Then we set off Armada style for Thomas.  I ended up leisurely cruising behind Capn Jon in his Pheonix III Two Hearted-- official IAZ,P Partner in Adventure.

This was Capn Jon's first SRR and he decided to approach the east beach on Thomas by wrapping around the backside of the island.  I thought this was a fine idea since I had never been back there and there appeared to be obstacle strewn shallow waters on the south end.  Just as expected we had to beat upwind to the beach in shallow seaweed and rock festooned waters!  Several other hapless skippers followed us.  I'm pretty sure they all had a good time, right?  It was a great technical sail complete with the usual rowboat spectators waiting for us on the beach. 

Me and my Goat. (Courtesy of Capn Jon)
 I got there early and was able to take some pictures of others arriving.
Paul driving Kathleen Marie to Thomas
Kathleen Marie and a Penobscot 14

Bleat's first sail!  WOOT WOOT 
Sea Pearl 21 Velella Velella 
Loon, a Devlin Egret 
This guy isn't afraid to run her right up onto whatever rocks are in the way.  Bulletproof.

First boats are pulling up with most of the fleet downwind of the island.  Note Bleat
Andrew's Ian Oughtred J2


Clint Chase gets to put his cool logo on his sail

Kathleen Marie nestled in for lunch
Brand new Core Sound 17 after first sail EVAR

After lunch the wind had picked up considerably and it was time to sail back to Lamoine.  At this point I picked up a crewmember (moveable ballast!) and so I decided to forego reefing and see how fast we could get IAZ,P.  We made it back to Lamoine and had no one to greet us as everyone was still behind us.  So we turned around and beat back to the fleet.  Landing on the shore at Lamoine turned exciting since it was a lee shore at that point.

 Clint coming in under mizzen alone and Capn Jon in Two Hearted

Scooting along
Clint posing, Ellie shipshaping, and Capn Jon struggling.  It's more fun to watch from a distance.
I ended up going back out again with another crewmember.  This time we were reefed to the second point.  This was a great idea, and the boat performed awesome.  Sailing is fun, the wind was up, I couldn't justify not sailing again.  

Me storming back to the beach under 2 reefs.  Full speed ahead. (Courtesy Capn Jon)
Hand carry parking area.  Lots of coolness.
YAY friends!
It was windy enough that Jasmine, a Caledonia Yawl (of which we will see much more of later) ended up blowing out it's mast step.  At the SRR this is not a problem, because we can wander over to Allen's mobile woodshop and fabricate a new one.

Making that new mast step.  It doesn't have to be nice, just functional.

Hand carry at dusk

Day 2

On Friday it was off to gorgeous Stave Island, far on the eastern side of Frenchman's Bay.  I was able to scoot out relatively quickly in some light air.  It was beautiful sailing, though interrupted by some calm.  I had some moments of absolute golden sailing in flat glass scooting right along.  All in all, a little bit of everything.  I was the first sailboat to reach Stave, with the rowboats waiting for me (again... those rowboats).

 Three Goats and the Pheonix III

 One Goat. Two Goat. Three Goat.

 Caledonia Yawl Jasmine on the way to Stave Island with Cadillac Mountain

 Beautiful sailing...

 ...The fleet behind me...

...A nice sail shape...

 ...BAM!  Into a WALL OF CALM.  Out came the oars.  Row, row, row your boat, fool.

 Breeze back up and some nice Maine islands.

 The fleet starts to show up.  Note Far and Away, a completely unique Noman's Land boat to port of IAZ,P

 Nap in the grass

 Capn Jon decides to finally show up along with a Bolger Sweet Pea, Better Than Chocolate.
This Pea never gave up and always made it.

 On the way out of Stave Island, wind is coming back up and Clint and I start to get into it.

Video from Steve B of Clint and I battling it out

Clint and I fighting to windward.  This is happiness.

A very cool Washington County Peapod with a Block Island (RI) rig.
Out of Chapelle's American Small Sailing Craft
Nicknamed "stiletto"-- good looking but a pain to use

After a spirited sail out of Stave Island, we ran smack right back into the WALL OF CALM and sat floating in the middle of Frenchman Bay.  What to do but rehydrate and while away the hours? And then....

Jasmine gives IAZ,P a tow.  This is a GISAmateur first!

Three little ducks all in a row.  Look at that sky!

Sam and his CLC Northeaster Dory power-sailing like a champ.


The itinerary on the third day was Lamoine to Bean Island, but we did a circumnavigation of Dram Island first off of Sorento since the wind was so so sweet and we were making such great time.

Bean Island lunchtime:

Goats getting cozy

Intrepid reader, I am not going to write much here.  I just want you to enjoy what it is like when three Goats get together to terrorize the neighborhood for a bit.  All of the below pictures of three Goats are courtesy of Capn Jon.  Thank you Capn Jon for turning around and taking notice of this momentous event!

I present to you Goat Island Skiff history:

 Clint and myself working west.

 Catching up to Paul who slowed up a bit so we could sail together

 Terrorizing the Maine coast with smelly Goats! Fast as stink!

 Braying loud-mouthed Goats!

 Pillaging Goats!

Full on Goat fury! 

Capn Jon wisely stayed behind and out of the way of angry Goats!  

Well that was fun.  I don't think I was able to wipe the smile off my face that day.

Into Lamoine the wind slacked off and I doubled back to do some sailing with Two Hearted.

Shortly after this the wind died off and Capn Jon and I decided to go for a swim.  Then Capn Jon got the brilliant idea to pull the boats by ourselves, so we self towed.  Jasmine came swinging by like the predator she is and figured she might be able to get salvage rights and gave us yet another tow.  Skipper Chris has no fear, and this is why I like him.  He sail towed us right into the mooring field.  Go Chris, Go!

 Swimming.  Notice Capn Jon in distance also swimming.  We are heroes to the people.

On board and ready to rock!  Chris rocked us back and Mary fed us.

Then, it was time to pull the boats.  Sadness.

Herreshoff Carpenter


 Tom Jackon's Noman's Land boat, Far and Away

 Interior detail of Far and Away

 Kathleen Marie at rest with Acadia National Park 

Before we knew it, Small Reach Regatta 2012 was over.  A giant lobster dinner followed (and I do mean giant-- clams, mussels, sausages, corn, lobsters and more lobsters, etc) along with appropriate after-SRR campfires, story telling, and reminiscing.  

And then I woke up the next day.

 Three days of sailing, rowing, wind, sun, sunburned lips, and dehydration.  Coffee will fix this.  Or so I am told.

Trailer issues and Hamilton Marine in Searsport is CLOSED ON SUNDAYS!  
What are they thinking?  I needed my HM fix.
Nine (9) people pulled in while we there making repairs looking for Hamilton Marine goodness.  

Maine ice cream stands definitely fixed this.

Until next year, Small Reach Regatta!  Here's to 2013!


  1. Thanks for this writeup and allowing us to live vicariously through you!

  2. Nice Pictures, I would be interested in knowing who owns the Herreshoff Carpenter. I would like to learn about how well she sails.

  3. Way cool! I'm going to have to get my butt to the SRR and make it a 4 goater.