I have been able to get Solitude out on the water a healthy number of times since launching her last September. But they had all been daysailing expeditions, and not fulfilling the boat's true purpose in life: to go cruising. Taking advantage of a confluence of available time and unusuallylovely spring weather, I decided to remedy that with an overnight trip down to Edmonds.
I ducked out of work a little early on a Friday afternoon to get the adventure under way. I had loaded most of my gear the night before, so it was just a matter of throwing the last few items in the boat, hitched up, and headed for the water.
No sooner had Solitude hit the water than I was approached by the Coast Guard. Boating season just started, so the guys were out doing safety boardings. Solitude passed with flying colours, which is no surprise since, being rather conservative on matters of safety, I've made sure Solitude is well outfitted.
|The Coast Guard is always welcome aboard Solitude III.|
Things had become quite bumpy as the ferry docks at Edmonds came into view. It had been roughly four hours since leaving home, and I had covered around 20 miles. It was past dinner time and I was getting hungry, tired, and really looking forward to getting into port. I was so happy to finally steam around the jetty into marina and up to the guest dock! And I was so sad to see that the whole of the guest moorage had been reserved! Now, what's a little strange is that Port of Edmonds only takes reservations for one dock; everything else is supposedly first come, first served. Yet, here were "Reserved for Dagmar's Yacht Club" signs everywhere. Well, seeing as the hour was getting late, I found a spot on the guest dock where, if looked at from just the right angle didn't appear reserved, and decided to dock there, "reservations" be darned. It looked like most of the yacht club boats were already in port, so I figured (correctly as it turned out) that I'd be OK.
Edmonds is a gorgeous locale. A relaxing, well kept waterfront, complete with restaurants, a long fishing pier, ferry dock, and a couple of pocket beaches fill out the waterfront. The Olympics as the ferries crisscross the Sound, illuminated by beautiful sunsets. Just up from the ferry terminal is "Old Town," a cozy, bustling, very walkable little downtown.
It was a gorgeous evening, as I got things squared away aboard Solitude for the evening. I walked up to Anthony's for an al fresco dinner.
Anthony's is positioned right above the guest dock, and I could watch as people walked by and looked at Solitude, as she bobbed daintily amongst the large power yachts at the guest dock. Some people took pictures. I'm still not used to the attention the boat gets. John Harris sure designed a pretty little eyecatcher.
After dinner, I headed down to the fishing pier and watched the sunset. I then retired to the comfort of Solitude's cabin, were I settled in for a good night's sleep. Methinks I never sleep so well as when I sleep aboard.
Morning came, and a beautiful morning it was. Breakfast was at the Waterfront Coffee Company. Once, while waiting for a ferry, I had the best Mocha I think I had ever had here. This time, it wasn't nearly as good. Oh well, it did the job.
A front was predicted to move in by the evening, but it was still a warm morning and what gray there was in the skies promised to burn off. I pulled Solitude out of the marina in into somewhat agitated water. The winds were from the South at 4-7 kts and were running somewhat counter to the currents, again. I pointed Solitude northward, straight at a distance Point Elliot, and caught the following sea, sometimes surfing, sometimes pitching. It wasn't particularly rough out, but the motion was a just little uncomfortable. Indeed my stomach was starting to feel just a touch queasy about the time I was closing in on Possession Point. Fortunately, things started smoothing out the deeper I got into Possession Sound, and by the time I rounded Point Elliot, the seas reverted to a glassy calm.
Just north of Mukilteo, a harbor seal popped its head up less than five feet abeam of me. Just that quick, he was gone, only to reappear seconds later right astern. I watched, transfixed, as the seal repeated dove and swam right beneath the boat! (Fortunately, I finally had the presence of mind to grab my camera.)
The dark spot is the seal diving under Solitude
|Back in calm waters|
In all, it was a great trip. This is a great little boat for exploring the Sound...and I can't wait until I get another opportunity to take Solitude out for a cruise...maybe even a longer one next time!
|There's almost always a sea lion hanging out on the channel markers outside Everett.|
|Is there anything cuter than duckings?|