A few hours before we had boarded our boat for the weekend, Wildair, a 1985 Beneateau First 305 (32' LOA) on her mooring in Mallets Bay, VT. After getting our gear stowed we had a briefing on the important boat systems, like the head and engine, before getting under way. Mallets Bay is a nice protected bay just North of Burlington, VT, with land all around and an old railroad jetty, that is now a bike path, protecting the Western edge of the bay from the conditions on the broad lake.
|Dark n' Stormy|
|'Carleton's Prize' from Wikipedia|
I must confess that before taking this course I was a little worried about seasickness. As we headed back out into the whitecaps on the broad lake the thought popped into my head that I was feeling fine, actually I was feeling more alive than I had in a while. When Errol suggested we head upwind "just for fun and to get a little wet", I enthusiastically brought the boat up to a close haul and watched the water spray across the foredeck.
Our "Plan B" for an anchorage on Friday night was halfway back across the lake at the Northwestern tip of Providence Island. After a short hop back through the rough water we approached the lee of island and put the motor on to go in and investigate the anchorage. There was only one other boat there and we quickly found a spot to anchor.
|Notice the whitecaps past the point of land?|
|Anchorage at Providence Island|
The rest of the night was spent cooking a delicious dinner of pork loin, salad, and rice, and helping Errol to troubleshoot some of the wiring for the anchor light on Wildair. Errol had just brought the boat up from South of Annapolis, MD, and had had to drop the mast to come up the Champlain Canal. Honestly, one of the reasons we chose the International Sailing School was that they are one of the lowest cost (and closest) options of schools that I researched, as such, we weren't on a brand new 40+ foot boat. But actually that is was an unexpected bonus for us, since we spent the class aboard a boat that is in our size and price range, so we got to experience the "repair your boat in exotic anchorages" part of cruising.
After a great nights sleep in Wildair's v-berth we awoke to a sunny morning and much calmer conditions. After a breakfast of fruit and granola, some chart study, and a navigation lesson, we decided to head North up the lake past Plattsburgh, NY and onto the "inland sea" section of Lake Champlain.
|Looking out to the cockpit|
|Chart work and Breakfast|