Monday, February 22, 2016

#244 Benjamin River Holdout

We left Buck's Harbor in a warm, soft little breeze that would eventually die as we made our way down Eggemoggin Reach. Our destination was Center Harbor and the Wooden Boat races. We wouldn't make the start of the regatta with this wind, but somehow it didn't matter. It was a beautiful morning in Maine, and sailing the reach is always a blast sliding under the Deer Isle suspension bridge that towers hundreds of feet overhead.

We saw the sails of the old boats off in the distance - configurations you just don't see every day, as we finally eased our way in to Center Harbor for lunch, ghosting around some of the prettiest old woodies you'll ever see. These were gorgeous boats of all sizes and shapes, many of which had been brought back to life with a lot of sweat, sore knees and elbows. But that's another story.

After lunch, we had originally planned to sail to Swan Island for the night. But the wind was still light. The thought of using the iron sail all that way was unpleasant at best. Besides, a storm predicted to the west over the mainland was beginning to take shape. Predicted to hug the mainland, there was no guarantee it wouldn't turn more east and out over our heads. We decided to head back up the reach a short distance to the Benjamin River - a friendly and protected harbor, to holdup for the night.

I got a very brief cold swim in before the sprinkler was turned on. We were right on the edge of the storm, which made it all feel like we were watching a movie on a massive screen. The sunlight was blotted, the wind came up in fierce little whips, and an excellent thunder and lightning show ensued.

Within 10 minutes, all went calm again, and eventually the way was cleared for a peaceful dinner in the cockpit as the sun dipped out of sight, and a dramatic full moon later that evening. It was just another-if-you-don't-like-the-weather-in-Maine-thank-you-day-and-gloriously-stunning-full-moon-night in paradise.

Benjamin River  Holdout • 8" X8" framed to 12" X 12" • $250

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