Thursday, November 26, 2015

Snowbird Migration: Changing Culture - Clewiston to South Seas Resort

Our early Saturday morning departure from the Roland Martin's Marina at Clewiston came with a bit of a surprise. We were departing right at the start of a fishing tournament. Close to a hundred high speed outboard fishing boats were either departing the marina or launching on the Okeechobee Canal just outside the Clewiston Lock. As you can see in the photo below, they were buzzing around (slowly) like a bunch of bees. A few toots of the horn happily resulted in them giving us room to exit the lock and turn west on the canal.

Guided Discovery at sunrise in the Clewiston Lock approaching fishing boats 
massing for the start of a tournament
Note: We need to turn to port upon exiting the lock
Explanatory Note: The Clewiston Lock connects the Clewiston Canal to the Okeechobee Waterway. This lock remains open and unattended when water levels do not pose a flood threat.

Clewiston Lock looking south from Lake Okeechobee

Fishing boats launching along the canal as we head west toward Captiva
The destination for today was an 84 NM run to the South Seas Resort on Captiva Island where I planned to have dinner with my good friends Jerry and Cathy Swerdlick.

Considering that we had three locks and several bridges along this route, the question was whether we could make to Captiva before the light failed at Civil Twilight (6:03 PM). Again I relied on my log from last November to assess the feasibility. My calculations showed that at 1400 RPM, our normal cruise, we would arrive at 6:15 PM, assuming that delays at the locks and bridges averaged out the same as last year.  I set up the chart below at 8:07 AM to gauge whether we were on track.
Start Time 8:07
5:23 Clear of Franklin Lock 13:30
1:26 Clear of Edison Bridge 14:56
3:19 Arrive South Seas 18:15

By changing our speed from 8.4 knots at 1400 RPM to 8.7 at 1500 we would pick up .3 knots per hour or approximately 3.6 NM over the 12 hour period. While seemingly insignificant, 3.6 NM translates into just short of a 30 minute time saving over 12 hours and therefore got us in before the end of civil twilight.  Note: My back-up plan was to stop in Fort Myers if we fell behind our ETAs. 

Skip Roper and Guy Aries as we cruise along the Okeechobee Canal
The chart below, which adds Actual Time of Arrival (ATA), showed that at the Franklin Bridge and Edison Bridge that we were running ahead of schedule.

Start Time 8:07
5:23 Clear of Franklin Lock 13:30 13:08
1:26 Clear of Edison Bridge 14:56 14:29
3:19 Arrive South Seas 18:15 17:48

Ariel view of the Franklin Lock
Skip on the bow as we approach the Franklin Lock at 12:52 PM

Dolphins cavorting on the starboard side

We arrived at South Seas Resort at 5:48 which was just slightly after sunset. Bottom line.  Plenty of light.

Captive Island as the sun sets

South Seas tour boat just outside of South Seas Resort just after sunset
Shortly after arrival we were joined by Jerry and Cathy Swerdlick, my two oldest friends. Together with the crew we enjoyed a bottle of Mount Veeder 2012 Cabernet Savingnon before adjoring to dinner. 

Jerry, Cathy, guy and Skip at South Seas Resort

Jerry and Cathy arranging our table at Dock Fords
Regarding the "Changing Culture" title of the article.  Clewiston Florida has a population 7,143. The median income is $51,377 and the median home value is $123,000. 

Captiva Florida, population 583, has a median income of $169,130 and houses South Seas Resort. It's like going to another world.

Clewiston to Captiva Data
> Leg Distance: 83.9 NM
> Total Distance: 1,362 NM (1,566 statute miles)
> Time Enroute: 11.7 hours
> Average Speed: 7.4 kts
> Fuel Used: 92 gallons

Written by Les.

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Snowbird Fall Migration: Morehead City to Clewiston Express

The Morehead City pit stop had gone very well.  By Tuesday at 2:15 PM, we were back on the water after a rather efficient fueling process that had taken only an hour and 45 minutes.  Now we were headed southwest along the North Carolina, South Carolina and Georgia coasts with following seas and winds that were predicted to stay that way all the way to Florida.  Time to fly (relatively speaking) and we did.  Some highlights (remember at 1400 RPM we cruise at 8.4 knots and that's our average speed from the dock): 

  • Cape Fear, Wednesday at 1:00 AM - Avg speed 8.4 knots
  • Charleston SC, Wednesday at 1:00 PM - Avg 8.7 knots
  • Savannah, GA, Wednesday at 8:00 PM - Avg 8.7 knots
  • Brunswick GA, Thursday at 5:00 PM - Avg 8.7 knots
  • Fernandina Beach, FL, at 6:00 AM - Avg 8.7 knots

Our planned destination for Friday was Stuart Florida with an expected arrival around 2:00 PM (based on last year's log data). The plan was to refuel, wash the boat (to get rid of the caked on salt and to "Cruise Like a Gentleman" along the Okeechobee) and have a nice dinner at Sunset Bay Marina's lovely restaurant. Then depart early for a full day run from Stuart to Moorehaven on the west side of Lake Okeechobee.

Explanatory Note: The 1,227 nautical mile run from Hingham to Stuart requires 7 days and six nights.  With our boat's size, range, navigation equipment and good enough weather we can justify running 24 hours a day.  The final 222 NM segment between Stuart and Sarasota requires three days as you cannot run at night and have to deal with bridges and locks.

A full 24 hours from Fort Pierce Inlet, the chartplotter showed an arrival time of 6:00 AM.  The extra .3 to .4 knots of average speed (which soon after indicated an average of 8.8) over 3 days had accumulated an approximate saving of 4 hours.  We were going to get to Stuart before well noon.  Bottom line: We would waste almost 6 hours of good weather.  

That begged the question could we go further and reduce the length of the entire trip by one full day.  Last years' log book to the rescue.

Explanatory Note: I maintain a detailed log when cruising long distance. On the ocean the log notes location, weather (wind direction, speed, temperature, barometric pressure, and wave heights,) efficiency (RPMs, speed and fuel consumption) engine temperature along with comments on weather conditions.  On inland waters I am interested in "obstacles" such as bridges and locks.  I record weather data only if I'm concerned and want to follow trends.

The data from last year showed that we could reach Clewiston, which is just off Lake Okeechobee an hour before sunset (5:37 PM) at 4:30 PM. The key variable are the two locks, St Lucie and Port Myaka at the east end of the lake.  Last year we made it from Stuart to Port Myaka in 3.5 hours.  Once past the Myaka lock it is clear sailing to Clewiston.  Estimating two key ETAs, arrival at Stuart and Port Myaka, showed that the Clewiston destination was doable even if with delay, as once on Lake Okeechobee we could run at night if necessary.  

Explanatory Note: Arrival after to nightfall in an unfamiliar marina is not a problem. Readers will recall that last spring we pulled in close to midnight to stop the beating Tropical Storm Anna was afflicting.  This required negotiating the Cape Fear River and the ICW in the dark to dock at Southport. Not my preference but doable with our equipment.

Add to this the fact that sunset is not instant darkness.  Civil twilight at 6:03 PM added 26 minutes of light.  All told with a 6:00 AM arrival at Fort Pierce and an ETA in Clewiston of 4:30 PM, we had an hour and a half margin for an arrival in the light.

A bonus for going to Clewiston over Stuart was a 45 cent difference in fuel price.  Given the fact that we would need close to 700 gallons the $.45 saving would add up to $300.

We actually used up all but 10 minutes of our "make it before the light fails" margin before we got to Fort Pierce.  But again, arrival at Clewiston in the dark was not a problem especially since I had been there before and had the option of increasing speed if needed.

Bottom line:  Running at 1400 RPM (8.4 kts) we made it to Clewiston and docked at Roland Martin;s Marina 18:08 PM.  It was a lovely trip and I particularly enjoyed the what ifs of predicting estimated time of arrival.

Meanwhile, I had contacted Roland Martin's Marina and arranged for fueling on arrival.  Roland's dockmaster, Sam, was SUPER accommodating.

Now to refueling.  Readers will recall that I have been trying to come to grips with the fuel remaining / fuel consumed puzzle.  The Cat engine monitors were grossly understating fuel usage by a margin of around 20%).  Working with Outer Reef and Caterpillar we used my data from last years' fall cruise from Morehead City to Stuart to reprogram the ECU's.  The run from Morehead to Clewiston had the potential to confirm the accuracy of the new ECU settings as the distance (597 last year vs 635 NM this year) and average speed of 8.4 knots were comparable.

I predicted that we would add 347.9 gallons to the port tank and hit the prediction within .6 gallons.  WOW!.  The starboard prediction of 375.6 gallons was way off.  It took only 348.2 gallons (a 27.4 gallon difference).  OOPS! (Did I mention the fuel spill?)

16 gallons of the difference relates to fuel consumption between the two engines. Port indicated 323.3 while starboard showed 339.2. The other factor may be overstating the fuel used by the 16 KW generator although I am skeptical.  In any case, I'm going to have Cat reprogram the ECU to equalize fuel consumption.  then I'm going to get Northern Lights to verify my generator fuel use for the 12KW (1.2 GHR)and 16 KW generator.

Morehead City to Clewiston Data
> Engine Hours: 75.9
> Time Enroute: 3.5 days and 3 nights
> Average Speed: 8.4 kts
> Diesel Fuel: 696.8 gallons
> Cost per gallon: $2.26 + 7% tax

Written by Les.

Snowbird Fall Migration: Skip's Impressions

A month or two ago, I signed on as an able seaman to assist in the delivery of Guided Discovery from Hingham to Sarasota, not really knowing what to expect other than a leisurely trip to warmer clime.  I figured it would be mostly sightseeing, getting in plenty of reading, and learning about weather forecasting, navigation, seamanship etc.  well, as a reader can see from reading the rest of the blog, it was all of that, plus much more, minus the chance to read, which never happened! Busy, busy, busy constantly.  3 men handling a 63 foot yacht hundreds of miles, part of the trip 24 hours a day, made for quite a 9 day stretch.  Les, Guy and I shared great companionship and cooperation, super meals including Les' great shakes and an occasional glass of wine!  The best was the ongoing tutoring from Les on weather forecasting, navigation, lock and bridge passing and the history of many of the sights we passed.  Too many to list of the fun we had.  Most are in other parts of the blog.  Standing out in my memory was dinner in the (Roland Martin's) Marina redneck bar on Lake Obekochobee, patrons in confederate hats, heavily tattooed with interesting female companionship, to the next night at the SouthSeas Resort on Captiva, surrounded by many trustfunders with the ladies in Lily Pulitzer sun dresses.  Sort of a trip highlight memory!  What an experience!  What an education!  Thanks so much Les for allowing a sort of "unable seaman" to becoming a more educated "able seaman"!  Skip

Skip, Les and Guy at South Seas Resort on Captiva
Guided Discovery at South Seas Resort

Saturday, November 7, 2015

Snowbird Fall Migration: Transiting Cape Hatteras at Night

Cape Hatteras is a challenge for small pleasure boats, which is why most opt for the ICW between Norfolk and Morehead City.  That said, based on the number of wrecks, it also a challenge for ships.  

Hatteras presents several unique challenges. The Gulf Stream’s 2 to 3 knot warm water current turns northeast here and converges with the weaker cold water Labradore Current. Because of these currents, the Cape often sets up its own weather patterns and conditions can change rapidly (which we experienced last November).  It can also set up standing waves when winds and currents are in opposition.  Add the need to head 12 miles out to sea to round Hatteras’ uncrossable Diamond Shoal, and the fact the east bound weather fronts often converge here and you have a formula for rough unpredictable water.

I watch the weather at Hatteras almost every day trying to understand the factors that contribute to the consistently rough seas. My watch intensifies as the cruise south approaches. Hence, my decision, days earlier, that we had a weather window for the trip reflected my analysis of the predicted weather at the Cape.

This was still true on Saturday as shown in the photos below.  A weak high pressure system dominates the east coast and Siruis’ sea condition screen reflects calm seas on the east coast.

Late Monday, as we approached Hatteras, the forecast for Monday evening called for west winds of 10 to 15 knots with 3 to 5 foots seas and a period of 6 seconds.  NOAA's Tuesday prediction called for the winds to swing north and increase to 15 to 20 with 4 to 6 foot seas with a chance of showers in the morning. 

Actually, as early as Monday morning the winds had already swung northeast and continued to build as we proceeded south toward the cape. Northeast winds are favorable as they produce a push and a following sea (more push).  46 miles north of the Cape Hatteras Light at 10:00 PM we had 20 knot east northeast winds gusting to 25.  Seas, which we estimated at 3 to 4 feet, were off the port beam.  The boat was riding smoothly.  That said, this is Hatteras and conditions can get bad real fast. As a precaution, we followed our Standard Operating Procedure for preparing the boat for rough seas.  They never came.

At 2:00 AM on Tuesday we rounded the end of Diamond Shoal with northeast winds and a 3 to 4 foot following sea and continued on to Cape Lookout with essentially unchanged conditions.  In the 24 period starting at around 11:00 AM on Monday, we had rounded the dreaded Cape Hatteras and her somewhat nasty step sister, Cape Lookout, without difficulty. 

We also picked up speed and therefore time on the Cape Charles (Virginia Beach) to Morehead segment due to the following sea. At Block Island on Saturday night, we were averaging 8.6 knots. Then came the offshore crossing between the Hamptons and Cape May (NJ) where we dropped to 8.1 kts due to head winds and heavy seas.  Then Cape Hatteras segment got us up to 8.3 kts and within .1 knts of the boat's optimum cruising speed of 8.4.

At 12:30 PM on Tuesday we pulled into Morehead Yacht Basin.  Refueling was completed in 1 hour and 45 minutes by one very efficient crew.  We took on 849.1 gallons of diesel and by 2:15 PM we were on the water for the Morehead to Stuart Florida leg. Did I mention that we paid $2.26 for fuel?  That is the lowest price I’ve paid for diesel in years.  Below are statistics:

Hingham to Morehead City Data
> Engine Hours: 79 hours
> Time Enroute: 4 days and 3 nights
> Average Speed: 8.3 kts
> Diesel Fuel: 849.1 gallons
> Cost per gallon: $2.26

 Written by Les.

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Snowbird Fall Migration: Weather Surprise

This article is trip south second installment

Saturday, we awoke to clear skies and calm winds.  Then Skip and Guy arrived and we, the crew, made final departure preparations (stow the boarding ladder, the deck chairs and pull the power cord).  We were off the dock at 7:15 AM.  Not bad.

But not perfect. When it came time to cast off, well actually after we had untied all but the stern line, I discovered that I had not fired up the engines. Guy’s fast action of not releasing the line when I declared a “problem” turned my error into an inside joke rather than a potential accident. When I arrive in Sarasota I’m going to get checked for dementia.

Side Story: Several days earlier I had moved the departure time back to 6:00 AM, but Diana thought that was too uncivilized.  Reluctantly I moved it ahead to 7:00 AM.  Diana’s desire to change the time worked in our favor hours later when we arrived at the Cape Cod Canal.

Anyhow, we were off with perfect weather as we effortlessly cruised south along Cape Cod Bay to the Cape Cod Canal. Our passage through the Canal took just short of an hour. Luckily, Diana’s time change reduced both the time and velocity of the unfavorable current at the west end of the canal resulting in a loss of only 1 knot.  Then, at mid canal, the current swung and we gained back 2 knots.  Most importantly, we also had a favorable current in Buzzards Bay so that by the time we reached Block Island at 7:52 PM we were flying (OK slight exaggeration) at an average speed of 8.7 knots, .3 knots above our 1400 RPM optimal cruise speed (and that average is starting from the dock).

A (close to) gourmet dinner was served at 5:30 PM as the sun was setting. Salad of romaine lettuce, avocado, tomatoes, onions, walnuts, raisins and pine nut with a balsamic vinaigrette; oven heated meatballs in marinara sauce and oven baked potatoes with herbs de proveance and garlic.  The wine was 2012 Mount Veeder Cabernet Savingnon, my favorite.  Desert was fresh raspberries with whipped cream. Truly I was “Cruising Like a Gentleman” (which was the title of Passagemaker’s October 2014 lead story on our 63 Outer Reef).

After dinner we “settled in” for a pleasant overnight cruise along the south coast of Long Island.

Explanatory Note: “Settled in” involves taping off light sources to preserve night vision and setting up the multifunction screens with chartplotter, AIS, radar and night vision.

I have a Long Island cruising strategy.  If the sea condition are rough, my programmed route takes us close (within 2.5 miles) of the coast to take advantage of the shallower water that tends to diminish wave height.  If seas are favorable, I avoid the New York Harbor shipping lanes by cutting southwest toward Atlantic City just east of Shinnecock Inlet (South Hampton, NY).

Just after 1:00 AM we received a Coast Guard broadcast alerting us to a dredging operation off Moriches Inlet extending 2.5 miles out into the ocean on the surface.  We marked the location and determined that it was within a half mile of our intended route.  Offshore sea conditions on satellite weather showed 3 foot head seas for the 95 nautical mile run direct to the New Jersey shore.  Since we had been riding comfortably in 3 foot heads seas for hours we turned to a heading of 241 degrees.  This move also saves us 14 NM which saves one and a half hours of running time (or about 15 gallons of fuel).

At 4:00 AM on Sunday, we recorded winds from the west southwest at 25-30 knots and head seas of 3 to 4 feet.  Still comfortable.  A check of satellite weather continued to show 3 foot seas for the next 24 hours.

Totally disregarding Sirius Satellite Weather’s existing and predicted wave heights (just kidding) the wind and seas continued to build.  At 7:00 AM we recorded 25 to 30 knot winds with seas of 4 to 6 with and occasional 7.  Not so comfortable.

Three hours later (10:39 AM) with head winds continuing at 25 to 30 knots we recorded 6 to 8 foot head seas with an occasional 10.  Not good.  All books on the shelves in the VIP stateroom were dislodged when the wood rails fell out of their slots.  No damage but what a mess. Also the forward hatch leaked but a twist of the screwdriver solved that problem.  The bigger problem was 600 feet of anchor chain that was airborne in the chain lockers. Readers will recall that the platforms in the lockers wound up on top of the chain when we encountered 10 to 12s off Cape Hatteras last May when we were running ahead of Tropical Storm Anna. I expected this would be the case this time and my worst fears were confirmed when I reluctantly checked the lockers during refueling in Morehead City.  The port platform was sitting on top of the chain (see photo).  Oh well, another three hours project straightening out the chain and re-seating the platform in it rightful place.  Did I mention that our position at 7:18 AM was 30 NM southeast of New York Harbor ?

Decision time.  At 7:18 AM, we were 60% of the way to the Jersey Shore and 30 NM from New York Harbor.  Turing northwest to there would put the seas on our beam.  Turning back or due north toward Long Island was a possible option as it would improve the ride but would delay the trip.  Holding the course was reasonable as the seas would diminish as we got close to shore.  We chose that option and within 3 hours the sea conditions had improved to a tolerable 5 to 7.  Four hours later (6:00 PM), seas were 3 to 4 and we were able to cook dinner.  At that point Sirius Satellite Weather got “serious” and started reporting the true conditions.

Dinner Sunday evening included a salad, shells stuffed with ricotta and spinach, white wine and raspberries with whipped cream for desert.  Very civilized.

Explanatory Note: My daughter, Lesley, graciously volunteered to cook gourmet meals that could be frozen and reheated (either with the microwave if seas were rough or oven heated if seas were calm). This replaced the Trader Joes frozen dinners that I had used in the past.  What a difference!

At 9:00 PM on Sunday evening we were off Cape May New Jersey riding comfortably on 2 to 3 foot head seas.

The head winds, head seas and big waves encountered on Sunday Night and Monday morning reduced our average speed to 8.1 knots.

Next challenge Cape Hatteras.

Written by Les.

Snowbird Fall Migration: Weather, Weather, Weather

The life of a snowbird. 

We arrived in Hingham in early May and within a few weeks had already chosen November 1st as the target date for returning to Sarasota. Why set a date so quickly you ask and what about the weather, which as readers know is the cruising variable beyond our control? 

The early selection of the target date is easy to understand. We need to line up crew for the voyage and our volunteers need to have to have time to plan their schedules (which includes possible down time for weather).  

The weather is always a challenge.  We need a good enough weather window to enable us to optimally cruise from Hingham to Stuart in seven days and six nights on the North Atlantic Coast.

Explanatory Note: Even with less than perfect weather, we can still safely make the trip using inland waters, which comprise well over  of the 1200 of the 1450 miles to Stuart.  However, each time we “duck in” we increase the length of the trip by increasing the distance and eliminating night running.  Inland waters north to south: Long Island Sound, Delaware River, Chesapeake Bay, and the Atlantic Intracoastal Waterway.

Why the hurry you ask?  Three simple answers.  November is not exactly prime time for port to port cruising, we have a car to move and our insurance company does not want us south of Cape Hatteras before November 15.  Oh, did I mention the Furry Kid? Kodi refuses to eliminate on the boat and that would restrict us to day cruising, which combined with the ups and downs of weather would make for a 30 day trip to cover the distance (about 1,700 statute miles).  It would also add needless expense.  Add to that the fact that we would be sleeping in port while the good weather "goes away" and it's easy to understand our "move the boat" strategy.

Explanatory Note: Our insurance company gives us special dispensation with regard to crossing Cape Hatterasth before November 15 if there are no tropical storms in our path and we accept a higher (six figure) wind deductible.

Two Hingham Shipyard friends signed on early for the cruise south, which quickly eliminated challenge #1.  Both are experienced boaters.  Skip Roper, a boater from I-dock, and his wife Jan have a 31 foot single engine Eastern Trawler.  Guy Aries has both a boat at the marina and his captain's license.

Diana, Skip and Jan at the Hingham Yacht Club
Now to the weather.  I watch the weather every day and consider myself a student of weather.  I am always calculating whether the conditions could be used as the seven day weather window we need. Surprisingly, these windows occur frequently all year.  As the time draws near for departure (approximately10 days out) I start predicting whether the weather will be "good enough" (waves 3 to 5 foot or better) for the targeted cruising period.

Hello Hurricane Patricia.  This remarkable Category 5 hurricane (i.e., sustained winds over the 155 MPH minimum), the strongest on record (with gusts to 247 MPH), hit the southwest coast of Mexico on October 23rd, 60 miles north of Manzanillo and south Porta Vallatra.  It then diminished quickly into a tropical storm (thank you mountains) and headed northeast through Texas, along the Gulf and then up the Ohio Valley.  It cleared out a lot of weather, especially in New England where we had seven days of high northeast winds due to a Bermuda High that stalled a cold front along the coast.

The passage of Patricia’s remnants caused me to move up the departure date to Saturday, October 31.  Three days earlier, it was clear that starting on Saturday, I had a six day weather window as high pressure formed on the eastern US with low winds and calm seas all the way to Stuart. Those conditions were still in place on Saturday morning.

High Pressure dominates the east coast
Siruus wind and waves prediction
Dark blue represents calm seas under 2 feet
Intensiity changes as colors move from blue to light blue light green, green, etc to red

Written by Les

Sunday, October 25, 2015

Hingham Adventures: Peddlocks Island

Lesley, Amelia and I continued our island adventures with a visit to Peddocks Island in late August, again in search of monarch eggs.

Peddocks lies across Hull Gut and the Pemberton neighborhood of Hull to the north and across West Gut to Nut Island and Hough's Neck to the west. The island is one of the larger islands in Boston Harbor at 210.4 acres and has the longest island shoreline. Peddocks Island comprises four headlands connected by gravel or sand bars known as tombolos.

Peddocks Island looking northeast into Hull Bay
Hull Gut is to the left. The West Gut and Hough's Neck is to the right

Looking east across Hull Gut to Pemberton Point
Peddocks is One of many Boston Harbor Islands that was inhabited by Native Americans prior to European settlement in America and was was primarily used for farming since 1634. Its closeness to mainland Boston enabled its use for military purposes as well. During the Revolutionary War more than 600 militiamen were stationed on the island to guard against the return of British troops following their evacuation of Boston by the hand of Gen. George Washington on March 17, 1776. A patriot infantrymen's raid on a Loyalist (Tory) farm is also believed to have taken place on the island.[4]

In 1904, Fort Andrews was built on the island, and it served as an active harbor defense fort until the end of WWII. As of 2008, 26 of the original buildings of Fort Andrews were still standing — guardhouses, prisoner-of-war barracks, stables, a gymnasium, a firehouse, etc. — although most of them were in decrepit shape and were closed to the public for safety reasons.

It is still inhabited today although by only 17 people.  The island has no electricity or running water.  We met one of the residents and he told us that theState of Massachusetts had deliberately destroyed a water main that ran to the island from Hough's Neck in an attempt to force residents off the island. According to his account, the State nearly succeeded but was prevented from evicting the residents due to the manner in which titled had been conveyed to the properties.

Lesley, Amelia and I walked from one end of the island to the other by the central path that connects the headlands.  Then we walked back along the northeast shoreline.  In total we walked over 3 miles. I'll let the photos tell the story.

A building from Fort Andrews with parade field to the left
A photo showing a now demolished building and the one in the above photo

Our dingy anchored off the ferry dock

Stairs leading to a camp ground on the drumlin


One of the houses on the island

View of the west headland with cottages visibile

Houses on the west side of the islands.  Some in very good shape

Yes, they really have out houses.  No running water

Long abandoned cottage

Rain barrel to collect water

Remnants of a dock

One of the island's 17 residents

View of the Ranger station

National Park Service Rangers

Historic photos

Lesley captures me pulling up the anchor
We had a great visit but alas, we did not find a single monarch egg. We will definitely return next summer.

Written by Les.