Sunday, March 27, 2011

Hira, Shatoosh and Sabra Are Gifted A Commemorative Brick

One of my long time friends, Jane Sweeney, took me to lunch today in our favorite location of Gig Harbor, WA. This is where I berthed Sabra back in the 80's, so it always holds lots of wonderful memories for me.
We lunched at our favorite Indian Restaurant and then Jane took me to visit the new Gig Harbor History Museum, as she had gifted me a a fundraiser brick with my name on it, as well as, Sabra and Shatoosh.

This summer as I bring Shatoosh into the lower Sound from the Pacific Ocean, we will enter Gig Harbor, just as I had done with Sabra, in 1982. Jane had the foresight about a year ago to do this and is my birthday present for my 68th, which is coming just around the corner. I was so touched when she was telling me; that it brought tears to my eyes. What a wonderful friend and a wonderful gesture of honoring me and my boats, as part of the maritime history of Gig Harbor.

The museum is a beautiful tribute to the long maritime history of the harbor. After Lt. Peter Puget entered Gig Harbor and explored the South Sound in 1792, Captain Vancouver, named the Sound, Puget. A name, that has stood the test of time, but has been recently changed to the Salish Sea, to honor the Salish Indians who lived in the Pacific North West.

I look forward to returning to this delightful harbor in Shatoosh and bringing all my crew to visit the museum. Thank you Jane, for this wonderful gift.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Kenner Kittiwake 23

My day started off with many wondrous events, which all got me reminiscing about some of my ole boats and lake sailing. Every time I was reassigned to a new Army Post, it seemed I bought a larger boat. While stationed in San Antonio, Tx. I traded in my 16ft. Chrysler Mutineer for a 23 ft Kenner Kittiwake.

A friend had a Kenner Privateer, ketch rigged, and kept her on Lake Texhoma, in the panhandle region of Texas and Oklahoma. She had found my boat, in poor condition, and so a group of us found a trailer/truck and returned with my new boat. It took lots of work to get her looking good. I never really named her, but called her the Kittiwake, which was perfect.

I sailed on Canyon Lake north of San Antonio and had a nice little slip for her. Every weekend I was on board and loved it. A real boat with a cabin and bunks that would cradle you to sleep. After I gained some strength in my sea legs, I took to sailing at night with those clear Texas skies. I could sail down past the marina and singlehandedly pick up a mooring buoy in the dark and spend the night. I felt like Joshua Slocum or Triston Jones. I dreamed on those starry, starry nights, that maybe one day, I would have a big enough boat to sail the oceans blue. My best friend had found another Kittiwake and we sat side by side and we really had lots of fun. Back in those days, I dreamed of cruising somewhere, anywhere. I wanted to roam on a boat.

I looked online today and now, there is a Kittiwake Organization, even a vessel on Canyon Lake. These boats were made in Arkansas, by the Kenner company which originally built airplanes. The Kittiwake is a slight modification from a Carl Alberg design. She has beautiful lines. I remember looking for another boat when I got transferred from Texas to Hawaii and said, "Oh, if I could just find a boat that looks like the Kittiwake." I did, indeed find one, The Sparkman Stephens designed, Swan 36 made by Nautor of Finland.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Skol: Has Been Located

A fella stops me on the dock to chat. He owns a boat in my marina and from time to time we share our boating talk. He is quite the talker, so I give him free rein and let him run. He always has interesting thoughts, ideas, and lots of knowledge about a variety of subjects. I always leave knowing something new.

After rambling through several subjects, he begins to say something that gets my ears standing at attention. He states he is a member of the NW Classic Boat Club and several months ago he remembers reading about one of the members hauling an empty trailer to the California Delta to pick up an Albin 25 and returns to Seattle. I'm on it, as this is a hot clue, for Too Tall. After a few hours, it is confirmed, Skol is in
Seattle with the new owner.

Well, Well, isn't this bit of information interesting. Shatoosh is berthed in Oregon, Skol is in Seattle and there is only one guy in the marina yesterday and he has all the information that Too Tall needs to find his ole boat. Being in the right place at the right time and I just took all the time to listen to this fella. God sends us messengers all the time, and often we are in too big of a hurray to really listen and often miss the message.

Hey God, I'm still waiting to hear from someone about Sabra, my Sparkman Stephens designed, Swan 36, hull number 74. I sold her in 1987 to Tami Oldham Ashcraft in Friday Harbor and later she sold her. Tami is famous for surviving a cat 4 hurricane, pitch poling in the south pacific, loosing her fiance overboard and single handedly sailing her jury rigged boat to the Hilo, Hawaii. She wrote her book about the trip, Red Sky In Mourning. If you haven't read this one, take the time to do so. It is a really good story.

God, did you hear me? Where is Sabra? She was a documented vessel, but I do not have the documentation number. The Coast Guard has 11 Documented Sabra names, but the chances of her still having that name is remote. None of the Sabras are Swans. I'll try to make contact with Tami.

Monday, March 21, 2011

2 Months Before the Bar

2 Months  to go for crossing the Columbia River Bar

I'm on board Shatoosh, the weather is warming up some, the river is running high and the rain is intermittent today. The nice thing about the high water is the ramp to the dock is not so steep, so making those trips up and down the ramp is much easier.

I'm taking inventory of clothes, food items, foul weather gear, spare engine parts, batteries, and fishing gear. I've have visions of catching some salmon when going up the coast and will have to check out all the regulations on the upcoming season. My net book is loaded with all the necessary charts, I have printed out the coast pilot for the northwest waters and have highlighted all the areas of concern. I've got 2 survival suits on board, one for me and one for Joyce, my first mate.

Joyce is a long time friend and able bodied crew. She has owned several sailboats in her life, but her last one was Sarah, a Cape Dory 27. We sailed her years ago, from Oahu to Kauai, and had a great time exploring the north shore, anchoring in the beautiful Hanalei Bay, motoring up the Hanalei River, cooking our fresh fish on the bbq on the beach and taking a zodiac trip up the Napali coast. Boy, those were the days, inter island cruising in the Hawaiian Islands. Rough, but beautiful. She is on the left and Ann, another crew on the right. Ann crewed for me on my Snake River Trip. This photo was taken while we were fishing for striper bass in the Delta region of the Sacramento and San Joaquin Rivers in California.

I am so fortunate to have had many adventures on Shatoosh and Sabra, my Swan 36. I lived aboard Sabra at La Mariana Sailing Club which was in Keehi Lagoon on the leeward side of Oahu Island. In later years, Joyce kept Sarah there and my twin, Jean, lived aboard her Namaste, a Gulf 32, there, as well.  We three sailors, have been impacted by the recent tsunami which hit the Hawaiian Islands and destroyed the majority of our beloved La Mariana Sailing Club. See, You Tube, and search for tsunami La Mariana Sailing Club and Keehi Lagoon to see first hand accounts of the destruction.

Too Tall Tom was going to follow us up the coast in his truck and be the land based logistical coordinator, but he is now moving to central Texas. I found him a new Albin buddy near Austin. They are having fun getting to know each other. Interesting this new fellow refers to himself as; if you can believe this, Too Wide Tom. There's a pair of them, don't tell. It will be fun to hear of their adventures and worthy, I'm certain, of a few posting on this blog site.

Speaking of Too Tall Tom, he has come up with Skol's hull number and year built...HN 2240; 1975. Anyone seeing a newly purchased Albin 25; transporting her from California to Washington State, please let me know.

I'm investigating a portable fuel tank and there are several options of new ways to syphon the fuel from one tank to another. I'd like to have that option of having extra fuel on board just in case  we couldn't get into La Push, Washington and would have to stay out all night to make our next marina of Neah Bay in the Straits of Juan de Fuca. While I have adequate fuel to make the trip, it is wise to take extra. I always said Too Tall, your name should be Back Up Billy as you have back ups for the back ups. I'm not that obsessive, but on occasion I will back up a system. Like bilge pumps: manual and electric.

You might like to look into my archive section to view my sail on the Lady Washington in September 2009, when I crewed from Port Townsend to her home port of Aberdeen, near Westport, Wa. This trip represents a reversal of our current planned trip.

I am certainly getting excited about our upcoming Adventure. It has rained all afternoon and evening and I am warm and toasty in my bunk reading The Arabian Nights on my new Kindle. A book my father read to us as kids before we went to bed. It was free on Amazon. A great deal for a great day on Shatoosh, even if we are not riding a camel searching for adventure in Timbuktu.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Winter Blues Getting You Down or Do You Have AWS?

 Is your baby snowed in?  Are you  waiting for the snow and ice to melt and fill the waterways again? Or, have you sold your Albin 25 and now have seller's regret? Do you walk the docks in search of your old love? Are you awakened at night with dreams of cruising your Albin to some deserted island? Do your hands shake and do you have uncontrollable night sweats?

If so, you could be suffering from Albin Withdrawal Symptoms(AWS)!

I understand this can be a serious condition and can affect the quality of your life. Well, modern medicine has come up with a cure for your symptoms and condition.

Take 2 of these and call me in the morning.
Dr. Hira Reid

Thanks 2 Tall, for finding this photo in the obscure files of the internet. Just in time to give us all another laugh.