Stratford CT to Manhasset Bay, Long Island

Posted Oct. 19, 2008 at 06:17

Stratford was a short overnight stop. Now that we had a Wal-Mart and a number of other stores close by, we decided against going shopping. Refreshed by warm showers we topped up our water tank (we won't use the watermaker for a couple of days here around NYC so that we wouldn't clog its filters) and left in the morning with a blustery cold northeasterly wind of 20-25kn to make it to Manhasset Bay (Port Washington, NY).  The wind piled up some waves as Long Island Sound is getting narrower and shallower at it's west end.  Fortunately as the day progressed, the pattern of previous days (dominated by clear skies and high pressure) repeated: gradually the wind dropped below 20kn and in the afternoon even further to low 10s prompting me to raise the mainsail as well (we were doing 7kn or so with the #2 genoa alone downwind while the wind was 15-20kn...)

There was quite a number of tugs with barges in tow that we had to watch out for.  Being a nice, sunny Saturday, other sailboats emerged for daysails and played mice for the tugboat-cats.   I overheard one tugboat captain talking to the other on VHF13 about the sailboats around them:  "...its past Labour Day, they are all fair game..." ;-)

Then a bit of a deja-vu:

The four sisters of the Four Sisters (the coal electric plant demolished in Mississauga in 2006)

Dora enjoying the sun on the downwind run:

and NYC appearing on the horizon (the Empire State Building top appeared first looking like a hazy distant sailboat):

The big triangle is a *real* sailboat, the Manhattan skyline is behind it to the left.

By the time we got to Manhasset Bay, there were literally a hundred sailboats out Saturday afternoon, very many of them concentrated around race buoys.  In the mean time I phoned the well-known 79St Basin municipal marina on the mid-West side of Manhattan (Hudson River) to inquire about the rates ($30/night for a mooring, $2.75/ft/night for dockage (scarce), $180/week for a mooring).  I have still to phone/figure out the logistics here in Manhasset Bay - there is a 1hour Long Island commuter train service from here to Manhattan which doesn't sound too bad.

Tomorrow there's a bit of a blow forming again (30kn gusts here) out near George's Bank, it's becoming a storm (possibly hurricane force) that should fortunately disappear into the Atlantic, so we might stay here on this free mooring ball for transients, courtesy of Port Washington Water Taxi.
-- Z --