Winds favored “heading outside” on Sunday, out the St. John’s River into the ocean at Jacksonville Florida, then south to St. Augustine, and back “in.” Total trip: 34 nautical miles. Our goal was to ride the outgoing flood tide currents from Sisters Creek, and the incoming flood tides into St. Augustine before late afternoon.
Exiting Sisters Creek, a pod of 4-5 dolphins escorted us out. In truth, they did more of a drive-by than an escort or playing in our bow wake. We decided to take it as a fortuitous sign anyway for our shakeout cruise.
As we entered the ocean, the clouds thinned, revealing bright sunshine and patches of blue sky, with the tide continuing to give us a gentle extra speed bump. The winds were there, as forecast. too.
We hoisted both the job and the mainsails. This marked our first time hoisting sail on Gallivant.
|Our speeed-over-ground (SOG) hummed|
along at about 7+ knots.
Our last sailboat, a 36-foot Pearson 365, averaged 3-4 knots, with a maximum hull speed of 7. In short, we were slow. By contrast, Galivant practically glided effortlessly along on broad reach at 7+ knots, aided by flat seas.
“You gotta let Don and Maryann [Gallivant’s former owners] know, we are f*ucking loving this!”
Thanks to the wonders of modern cell phone technology, I did, right hten and there.
|Sunny, clear skies, comparatively on our way from Sisters Creek JAX to St. Augustine FL.|
Over a few hours, the wind eventually dropped enough to prompt us to take down our flapping sails. We completed our motor into St. Augustine with ease, with Wayne expertly grabbing the mooring ball with our boat hook, first pass. Another small victory—it’s not always that easy.
Even after taking our time getting the boat all buttoned up, and our dinghy down and to shore, there was still plenty of time for a leisurely afternoon stroll.
We know we’re not always going to get this lucky on conditions, but what a sweet start, especially after all the clouds, chilly temps, rain, thunder, and lightning from the day before.
Tomorrow: a little boat work and freelance work, then connect with a friend in St. Augustine.
This is a recent retrospective of our Sunday, February 7. 2021 sail. Today is February 9th. Catch-up posts coming soon.
|St. Augustine mooring field. Photo credit: Paul Brennan from Pixabay|
St. Augustine, Florida, Municipal Marina, ball #7, N29 53.286 W81 18.340.