An Adventure

The wind was clocked at 23.4mph from the SW as we left the condo this AM.  Hum.

We stopped for breakfast at the little beach nearby and watched the whitecaps cresting on the beach.  Wind was thrumming the shrouds of the sailboats on their moorings.  No one was walking along the shoreline.  Well, we certainly weren’t going south today.

As we drove around the island, we saw the north side looked just fine.  Everything from Hodgkin’s Cove to Rockport’s Back Beach was flat and welcoming.  OK, we’re going north.

It was a breezy, choppy ride by the time we’d loaded everyone and their gear.  We had Linsley and Kevin Mordasky, Linda and Kerry Hurd and Bill Low with Pete and Pat as crew.  The Captain held onto his hat.  I drove the boat.

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The waves were getting steeper as we got near Folly Point because the tide was coming in 180 degrees from the wind’s direction.  That meant standing waves were building right at the point.  The pounding of the following sea and the whipping wind sounded like a freight train was bearing down on the boat from behind.  I didn’t turn to look because I didn’t want to see the ocean’s condition when it sounded like that.

But –

As we rounded the point and headed into Folly, the wind dropped and the sun’s warmth flooded every inch of exposed skin.  Whew.  I anchored in about 20 feet of water far into the cove at the base of the cliff with the gazebo on it.

Everyone was quick to get into the water which was still 59 degrees, according to Pete.  I descended the downline with the video camera and found a big decorator crab right away.  He/she had no growth on its shell.  Maybe it had just molted.  There were a few pollack that were inquisitive but shy at the same time.  Kerry and I filmed a very well camouflaged sea raven that was perched on a wall.

The water was super clear.  Visibility was about 15-20 feet along the wall on the west side of the cove and even better in shallower.

I emptied my tank and surfaced with everyone all at once.  We decided (with The Captain’s help) to call it after one dive because the ride home was going to be a humdinger.

I left my drysuit and hood on, wore my fleece gloves and drove into the wind and waves with the best protection I could have had.  Several waves broke over the bow, splashed me in the face and then rained down on the unsuspecting folk hanging on below.  Finding marks was a little difficult because the waves would hide them in troughs.  I also had to be alert to avoid lobster floats because we certainly didn’t want to get hung up on one today.  As we passed Plum Cove, the conditions started to improve because the wind had less fetch across Essex Bay.

We saw no other boats out in these conditions except two little skiffs in the marshes.  I think they were duck hunting.

We did see lots of birds gathering in groups.  Veronica would have known what they were, I’m sure.

After pushing off docked boats as we rounded into J-Dock, we were able to get back into the slip with a minimum of stress.  And it was high tide to help in the off-loading schlepping.

Hamburgers at 5 Guys at Gloucester Crossing topped of a great day with super people.

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One Response to “An Adventure”

  1. "V" Says:

    Ahhhhhh…the test of true “New Englanders”!
    Despite the windy conditions it sounds like you still had ‘one more cookie in the bag”….

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