Thursday, November 27, 2008

1000 Islands 2008

Once again we returned to the 1000 Islands, but this time with our Gemini catamaran. We spent a total of 24 days on the boat, although the trip was divided into what seemed like two different trips.
For the first 5 days we were joined by Uncle Alan and Spencer. Instead of heading straight to the 1000 Islands , we went in the opposite direction towards Lake Ontario. We were headed for Sandbanks Provincial Park, Alan and I secretly hoping to get some kiteboarding sessions in as well.
Our first night out of Bath we stayed anchored off of Waupos Island. It was a little dark and grey, but we all had fun towing the kids behind the dinghy on Alan's Jimmy Lewis surfboard.

The next day we were off to Sandbanks. We anchored off the main beach and all went swimming.

Later that day we went through the (shallow) channel at Wellington, making our way to West Lake to an anchorage at the base of the sandbanks. The water is quite shallow throughout this area, not many sailboats get in. We love our Gemini!!!

Our days were spent swimming, wakeboarding and playing on the sand dunes. Nights were filled with board games and Jiffy Pop!!!! After five days it was time for Alan and Spencer to go home. We returned to Bath, then just the four of us made our way east to the 1000 Islands.

Our first stop was Beaurivage Island, the same place we stayed in 2005. After a few days of swimming and exploring with the dinghy, we made our way to Thwartway Island where we were to spend the next 13 days.

Once again our days were pretty laidback. We did alot of snorkeling and swimming, as well as teaching both kids to wakeboard behind the dinghy.

If you would like to watch a 4-minute video of this trip that contains clips and pics, please go to:

Still haven't had enough??? Here's a link to more still pics:

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Bringing "Charlotte-Ann" Home

So the deal was finalized in October of 2006. We were the proud owners of a 1996 Gemini 105M (hull #519).

We decided to name our new boat "Charlotte-Ann" as a thank-you to our mothers (Charlotte Biggar and Ann MacLean).

The following spring it was time to bring "Charlotte-Ann" home. She was lying in Atlantic Highlands, New Jersey, which meant we had about a 500 mile delivery trip ahead of us.

The first leg of the trip involved a days' travel past Sandy Hook up into New York Harbour. From there it was about 160 miles up the Hudson River to Castleton-on-the-Hudson. This is a small boat club on the Hudson that has a do-it -yourself mast crane (you need to take the mast down in order to transit the Erie Canal. For this trip I secured the help of Jorge and Julio (brother Alan and brother-in-law Jim). The guys somehow arrived in New Jersey under the impression that this was going to be a pleasure cruise?!?! Within 30 minutes of arriving they had brushes in hand and were hard at it applying a coat of bottom paint.

For the next 4 days we had a great trip, with alot of laughs, working our way up the river.

We had a couple of amazing nights anchored along the Hudson (only possible due to our shallow draft), a fun night at a latin nightclub in New Jersey, and a near collison with a downbound freighter (Uhhh Mark, is that coming our way???).

Here is proof of just how hard the guys had it during the trip!!!

Once we got to Castleton-on the-Hudson, poor Jim thought he had died and went to heaven when the barkeeper told him large cups of Coors Lite were only $1.50!!!! I had visions of him calling Karen.

"Honey, I just found the perfect spot for a summer vacation!! Waterfront, close to shopping, nice weather and cheap beer!!!!"

One last bit of work out of the guys, get the mast back up, then wait for Lisa and the kids to arrive.

With Jim and Alan now on their way home with our car, it was time for Lisa and the kids to join the boat as we started our transit across New York State to Lake Erie and eventually home to Port Colborne.
See the link for the Erie Canal.

We spent about 8 days travelling through the canal which includes 34 locks and quite a few bridges. Some days were longer than others, but we also took time out for stops, including 2 days at Sylvan Beach on Oneida Lake.

Keeping the kids busy can sometimes be a chore , thankfully there are usually enough things on the go to keep them occupied. One of the things we regularly do are knot tying lessons (along with other boat responsibilities for the kids). This link will take you to a lesson given by Delaney on tying a bowline knot.

After completing our run on the canal, we arrived in Lackawana, New York. Here we had to put the mast back up, and the following is some video of Mitchell having fun (and worrying Lisa to death!!).

For more pics of the delivery trip please go to the following link: