Press Gang News

Great Grand Adventure blog wrap up

Release Date: October 1, 2010

Please remember that these news items were important at the time of their release, but no longer have any urgency. So it is not necessary to follow up on them.News from the Press Gang

As the Good Old Boat crew heads toward the Annapolis Boat Show, the sailing season has come to an end in the northern prairie country. The nights have grown dark, there's a nip in the air, and the leaves are turning. We have wrapped up our summer sailing blog (our boat, unfortunately, is wrapped up too).

If you have followed the blog, we have added a few pieces and stuck them hither and yon within the blog (rather all at the top as any reasonable blogger would do). As it turns out, a few of the notes Jerry and I sent home got waylaid and never posted.

We will tag those additions as "NEW" so you don't have to wonder whether you've already read a piece or not. That said, here's an overview of what's in the entire blog.

About time - June 9, 2010
Jerry writes about why we decided to get going on a long sailing adventure now (before we get any older).

Preparations - June 17, 2010
Jerry writes about the gear and equipment that would be coming along.

What do you do all day? - June 24, 2010
The cruise began on June 20. While "out there" in cruising mode, I mull over that question that non-sailors often ask: What do you do all day?

A cruise down Memory Lane/June 25, 2010, Pike's Bay Marina, just south of Bayfield, Wisconsin
Jerry writes his first observations of each day's travels from Barker's Island Marina in Superior, Wisconsin, to Pike's Bay Marina near Bayfield, Wisconsin. He grows nostalgic (with a few memorable moments and fond memories in each place) since we started cruising in these waters nearly 20 years ago.

Bayfield to Saxon Harbor, July 2, 2010
In the first of his "passage notes," Jerry describes the journey between Bayfield and Saxon Harbor, both in Wisconsin.

Waiting out a storm system, July 4, 2010, Ontonagon, Michigan
Jerry's passage notes takes the crew from Saxon Harbor, Wisconsin, to Ontonagon, Michigan.

Walks with spiders, posted July 10, 2010
I do the "introspective thing" while describing a walk I took on Stockton Island in the Apostle Islands of Wisconsin.

This is why we sail - posted July 13, 2010
I glow over one of our first runs with the spinnaker. It was glorious.

Passage notes - July 14, 2010
Jerry delivers the blow by blow (sometimes it didn't blow at all, actually) of the trip from Ontonagon, Michigan, to the Keweenaw Waterway on Michigan's Upper Peninsula, on around the top of the Keweenaw Peninsula, and back around to the other side of the Keweenaw Waterway. The waterway is a shortcut created as a refuge for large ships, allowing them to pass through the Keweenaw Peninsula. Naturally, we took the long way around.

Passage notes - July 22, 2010
Jerry writes of our travels between Houghton and Munising, both in Michigan on the Upper Peninsula. The Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore was a highlight on this part of the voyage.

What's wrong with this picture? Or: Karen's rant about Michigan docks.
As we were leaving Michigan's Upper Peninsula, I finally realized that the docks everywhere we'd been are higher than our boat. We were climbing UP to docks, rather than stepping DOWN. This caused a rant from the first mate. Sorry. These things happen. It wasn't my first and won't be my last rant.

First impressions - July 23, 2010
As Mystic's crew left the United States behind, I wrote general impressions of the trip thus far and the differences between cruising mode and our usual sailing vacation mode.

Eureka Europa - July 24, 2010
I admit to being a bit giddy when we encountered a tall ship en route to Duluth for the Tall Ships Festival. The Europa from the Netherlands, was under full sail. She was quite a sight.

The test not taken - July 22, 2010
I write about our onboard survival kits and express my hope never to have to use them.

Passage notes - July 23, 2010
Jerry writes about the last leg from Munising to Grand Marais, Michigan.

Passage notes - July 26, 2010
Jerry begins the story of our travels in Canada from Grand Marais, Michigan to Batchawana Bay, Ontario.

Passage notes - July 30, 2010
The crew moves on up the eastern coastline to Cape Gargantua.

Passage notes - August 1, 2010
Onward and forward to Brule Harbor farther up the eastern shore.

Michipicoten: The disappearing island
This island really does appear to come and go. Amazing!

Passage report - August 1-4, 2010
This bit covers Brule Harbor to Pilot Harbor.

Passage notes - August 7, 2010
This one expresses some anchoring fears and frustrations we faced as we left Pilot Harbor, couldn't make any headway against wind and seas, and returned to our starting point only to have trouble anchoring there. It was a tough day.

Karen's Lake Superior impressions - August 2010
I wrote an overview of the trip along the southeastern shore of the lake with an emphasis on these themes: traditional vessels (we actually saw TWO tall ships!), our fear of losing the boat, and the kindness of strangers.

Electronics on boats - August 20, 2010
Jerry had heard from a reader who was surprised that we travel with all the electronic gee-gaws. I guess some people figure that a traditional boat should have traditional sailors and traditional equipment. So Jerry expresses his views on sailing with chart plotters, radar, AIS, and the rest.

Passage notes - August 8-10, 2010
Jerry advances the crew from Pilot Harbor (at last!) to the Slate Islands. Since we have had to admit that more of this trip than we expected was done with an engine (and here we were having to admit that publically!), he adds a thoughtful argument about motoring versus sailing on these passages.

Passage notes - August 12-14
Jerry advances the crew from the Slate Islands to Morn Harbor, where we waited out a very serious gale.

Passage notes - August 18-19, 2010
The crew moves on, after five days in Morn Harbor, to Nipigon, Ontario.

Memory Lane 2 - September 1, 2010
Not realizing that Jerry's Memory Lane piece had never been posted, I cheerfully wrote a piece of my own after reading all the logs we have accumulated in nearly 20 years spent sailing. I summarized some of our best and worst moments and quoted parts from those old logs. (Beware: this is a very long entry. I couldn't help myself.)

Windbound in Paradise - August 23-31, 2010
After spending more time than he'd like stuck in anchorages and thinking about what makes a good anchorage and what does not, Jerry advances some theories. He also advances the crew from Nipigon, Ontario, to Isle Royale National Park, back in the USA, with a note about his fear that the water pump is failing.

Dance of the loons - September 6, 2010
We had a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to witness an incredible display by a couple of loons fighting over territory. And we had the camera there to record it. I admit to being a bit giddy all over again. This was a real highlight of our trip.

Not your ordinary lake: A lake sailor's rant
Oops! There I go ranting again. I got fed up with people not taking our lake seriously. So I let 'em have it. (I hope.)

Passage notes - September 1-9, 2010
Jerry moves the crew along from Isle Royale to Barker's Island Marina, our home port for the winter.

In summary - Labor Day Weekend, 2010
I summarize the last leg of the trip with these highlights: wildlife (particularly those loons!) and wonderful people we met.

The last leg
Jerry waxes philosophic about the homecoming part of the cruise. Back to reality in Maple Grove, Minnesota. Can we adjust?

That's all folks! What a trip it is! We'll do a couple of short bits about the Annapolis Boat Show on our Good Old Boat Facebook page: <>.

Karen Larson (and the rest of the crew)


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