Day 1 – PCYC, Toronto to the Oswego Canal

August 21st, 2008 – Port Credit Yacht Club to Oswego across Lake Ontario.

Dear Friends and Family,

Our friends and family have expressed an interest in our trip and asked that we keep some sort of a blog to keep in touch. We thought that we would send periodical e-mails about our whereabouts, and the whereabouts of Black Diamond, because the two won’t always be the same.

I spent the last week and a half putting the final details on Black Diamond for the trip, while Roxane on the other hand, was trying to figure out what to pack. Normally we would pack for a week or so, to a certain location. With this trip we had to think ahead and stock the boat for our future trip to Bahamas as well.

 

Taking care of a few things up the mast!

Taking care of a few things up the mast!

 

Black Diamond was at the Angus dealership’s port during this time, I must say they have treated her well, and have taken care of all the details. She had the last few warranty items and installs taken care of, plus an oil change and all systems checked. We can not sail all the way to New York City due the many low bridges, therefore, we had Angus take the mast down with a crane. It was then mounted on a cradle that was designed and built by Angus.  Once we clear the last low bridge, around Catskill New York on the Hudson river, we are scheduled to meet Uncle Paul Thornton. He will help us raise the mast, and ensure all the electronics are re-connected properly. Uncle Paul just happens to be in Catskill working on his own boat, which is enroute from the Bahamas to Lake Ontario. His final destination is Port Credit Yacht Club, where he is now a new member.

Lord willing our trip will go something like this….

August 20th Port Credit Yacht Club to New York City by Sept 1st.
October 27th to November 8th (Ed and crew) New York to Florida (off-shore)
December 1st to January 15th Cruising the Bahamas Islands with the family.
March Break working our way home north along the US east coast.
April to NYC
May to Lake Ontario and home.

Yesterday, we started our first leg of the trip from the Port Credit Yacht Club at 10PM in the evening. After a nice dinner and a swim in the pool with the kids, we packed the final items in the boat. The boat is loaded down, the water tanks are full 400 liters, the fuel is topped up 130 liters, and the head is pumped out! The storage room is loaded with Sails, a new Dinghy and Electric Motor, Scuba Diving gear, Tools and Safety gear. The Bilge is loaded with 100 bottles of water and drinks, and all the other storage compartments are loaded with clothes and linens. Amazingly, the boat does not feel crowded at all, there is a spot for everything! Not the same as a week-end on the MacGregor, a lil’ R&R.

Ready to set off across Lake Ontario.

Ready to set off across Lake Ontario.

 

Last night the lake was calm. 4-5 knots of wind on the nose, but no worries since we are motoring. We averaged 6 knots at 2100 RPM. The trip to the Oswego Canal will take a total of 22 hours non-stop. By 9 AM this morning we covered 1/2 the distance with out complications. We only used an 1/8 of a tank of fuel. We encountered no containerships or traffic until about 7AM, at which time Roxane spotted three. The auto pilot did an amazing job, while we watched David Letterman in the salon, mind you, we did poked our heads out to have a look around every 10 minutes. Roxane went to bed at about 1AM, while I stood watch in the cockpit until 5AM. Then we switched positions, while I got some shut eye until about 8:30AM.

Enjoying Lunch in the middle of the lake.

Enjoying Lunch in the middle of the lake.

 

The remainder of the day we did not see a single boat until we were about 1 hour from Oswego. There we encountered 40 recreational fishing boats, dodging trolling boats into the harbour. At exactly 8PM and 22 hours later, we radioed the Oswego Yacht Club, and we were guided to the visitors dock. We met the friendliest husband and wife, they invited us into the clubhouse to sign in, very informal. With our PCYC membership we are allowed free docking at the Oswego Yacht Club for the night. After some refreshments, they offered to drive us to the Customs Check-in. We never would have found it otherwise. After the video phone check-in with customs, we were dropped off at the local ice cream shop, then walked along the main street along the river back to the club. Oswego is a really cute and happening town.

 

The rig sailing away from the sunset.

The rig sailing away from the sunset.

22 hours, 136 knotical miles which is about 250 kms, the boat is getting about the same gas economy as my car. Actually it would have cost us more to drive around the lake, and not as much fun.

s/v Black Diamond

I have been boating for over 25 years, at the age of 43, this is more than half of my life time. Starting out with a number of smaller power boats, then switching to sail about 8 years ago. I have sailed various boats from wind surfers, dinghies (lasers), keel boats from 26 to 45 foot yachts. I live in the area of Toronto Canada and sail mostly on Lake Ontario. I have been racing yachts for the past 7 years. I have also entered many long distance races such as the Fort Lauderdale to Charleston, completed in 2 days 8 hours, we received 4th place in division, 8 minutes in PHRF behind a 3rd place trophy. Then 4 times finishing the Susan Hood, a 75 mile over night race, 4 times entered in the Lake Ontario 300 the worlds longest fresh water race, a 308 knotical mile race around the perimeter of Lake Ontario. My crew and I on Black Diamond finished in 2 days 12 hours in 2009. In 2009, delivering the boat back up to Canada from the Bahamas we entered in a couple of interesting races, one from Fort Lauderdale to Charleston described as a sled ride up the gulf stream, the Charleston race week regatta series and the New Year's Day Staniel Cay Regatta in the Exumas, Bahamas. This race we came in 2nd over entire fleet, only lost by 3 minutes in a 2 hour race to a 47 footer. This was a boat for boat race, no PHRF scoring. "Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do, than by the ones you did do. So cast off the bowline, Sail away from the safe harbour. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover." Mark Twain Blue water experience include yacht deliveries from the Abacos, Bahamas to Charleston South Carolina 2006. This delivery was a non-stop, 3 and half days, total of 500 miles. We crossed parts of the Bermuda Triangle, and during most of the delivery were over 200 miles offshore. The delivery of Black Diamond a 40 foot Jeanneau racer/cruiser has been delivered to New York City and then offshore to Florida and the Bahamas from Toronto, Canada. This delivery from NYC to Florida was completed 100 miles offshore, for a distance of over a 1000 miles non-stop to Jacksonville, Florida. Completed in what might be a cruisers record of 5 days 3 hours non-stop offshore. This fall my family and I added another 500 miles of sailing throughout much of the Bahamas. Spending 6 weeks aboard Black Diamond sailing the Abacos, Nassau and the Exumas. I then sailed the boat back to New York, completely offshore, entered a few races along the way, and back to Toronto through the Hudson River and Erie Canal. During the 2009 season, we sailed Black Diamond off the dock 148 different days out of 365, winning the Vacant Dock award the second year in a row. Most recently, 2011, completed the delivery of friends boat Tracey & Nilson Ruiz, from Tortoal, BVI to New York. Tortola to Georgetown Bahamas in 5 days non-stop. Last leg from Charleston to New York over the momorial day long week-end non-stop Friday to Monday in 4 days. All completed safe and sound without incedent. Need any deliveries let me know. I am also an Open Water Certified diver and an active member of the Canadian Power and Sail Squadron, certifications included Power/Sail boat handling, Seamanship Sail, Piloting/charting, GPS Navigation, Extended Offshore Cruising and a VHF Radio operation license. I hope to further my education, qualifications and experience in long distance cruising and racing. One of my goals is to obtain a commercial Captains License. Feel free to contact me at [email protected]

You may also like...

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Follow Me