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Donnelly Great Loop Adventure 2017

SV Serenity

Planning for the rivers: Unstepping and shipping the mast (8/19/17)

This is a niche topic. If you look at the venn diagram that shows the intersection of ‘people who read the blog’ (about 4 people) and ‘people planning on doing the loop in a sailboat’ (more than 4), the intersection is not many.

But we are heading south from Sheboygan to Milwaukee on a 40+mile trip with eight hours of time, the day is sunny, the lake is not busy and Jan scanning the horizon, so I have time. And time and a computer are dangerous things. Continue reading “Planning for the rivers: Unstepping and shipping the mast (8/19/17)”

We got passed by a monarch butterfly; Irish Fest in Milwaukee makes it all better (8/19-8/20/17)

Start: Sheboygan, WI, 0623
End: McKinley Marina, Milwaukee, WI, 1456
Total Distance: 45.5 nm
Time: 8:33
Average Speed: 5.3 kts

We are back in the big city and loving it… Continue reading “We got passed by a monarch butterfly; Irish Fest in Milwaukee makes it all better (8/19-8/20/17)”

Recap of the first 100 days on the Loop

Will cover four things:

  1.  Monthly review for our third month on the water
  2. Rules (written and unwritten) that we have developed
  3. Truisms
  4. Cost of the trip (to date)

Continue reading “Recap of the first 100 days on the Loop”

Biking and eating our way across Washington Island Wisconsin: Paradise (7/30/17-7/31/17)

***I apologize–I’m catching up on posts from the past that haven’t made it on the sight yet.  This is from Washington island at the end of last month.  On or our favorite places so far on the loop.***

Well the best laid plans and all.

Our original plan was to anchor one night at Washington Island and then continue our journey south. But we woke up in the morning, it was an absolutely gorgeous day and there was an island in front of us. We have been hitting home runs when it comes to islands–they have all been awesome, so we decided to see if we could find some dock space that could fit our boat. Continue reading “Biking and eating our way across Washington Island Wisconsin: Paradise (7/30/17-7/31/17)”

Forecasters suck and the heartland of Wisconsin: Kewaunee (8/5/17)

Start: Sturgeon Bay, WI 0843
End: Salmon Harbor, Kewaunee, WI, 1347
Total Distance: 27.0 nm
Time: 5:04
Average Speed: 5.3 kts

The forecast for Saturday looks good after the gale warning and the monster waves on Lake Michigan on Friday. Winds from the West at 10mph, moving to the southwest by early afternoon. West winds of any type make us happy–they will push us along nicely; we don’t want anything from the east. Chance of thunderstorms by 3:45 in Kewaunee, our destination. We should be in our new home in plenty of time. Continue reading “Forecasters suck and the heartland of Wisconsin: Kewaunee (8/5/17)”

Maintenance: Fridge, Battery Charger, Hatch O-Rings and lower unit oil change

We knew we were going to be in Manitowoc for a couple of days, so a week ago I contacted Gary, the service manager at Manitowoc Marina, to see if he could help us with some maintenance issues. We needed (in no particular order) to get our battery monitor installed, someone to look at our ever running fridge, and haul our boat out of the water so I could change the oil on the outboards engines lower unit. And while we were here, I would replace the O rings on our hatches to see if that would stop the slow leaks we had in both bedrooms. The windows directly above each bed would drip water onto our beds in bad rainstorms. It appeared to be coming from the window handles, so I ordered some O-rings which grandpa Chuck delivered. Continue reading “Maintenance: Fridge, Battery Charger, Hatch O-Rings and lower unit oil change”

Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin (8/2-8/4/17): 50 degrees, Lambeau Field and Grandpa Chuck joins the show.

Start: Fish Creek, WI 0841
End: CenterPoint Marina, Sturgeon Bay, WI, 1304
Total Distance: 21.9 nm
Time: 4:23
Average Speed: 5.0 kts

Our plan was to get up early and get out and on the water to get some good weather. But we were delayed by the fact we were half way into a well, with a nice monohull behind us. So we waited until they left and then headed out into Green Bay for the run to Sturgeon Bay. Winds and waves were pushing us towards our destination. Which was good because there was plenty of both. Day was cloudy. So good day for travel; what else are we going to do? Continue reading “Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin (8/2-8/4/17): 50 degrees, Lambeau Field and Grandpa Chuck joins the show.”

Fish Creek, Wisconsin (8/1/17)

Start: Washington Island Private Dock, 0650
End: Fish Creek, WI, 1125
Total Distance: 22.6 nm
Time: 4:46
Average Speed: 4.7 kts

Lesson Learned (Because we continue to learn lessons every day): If the weather forecast calls for 10-15 mph winds against your direction of travel, think very hard about if you want to go. And if the forecast calls for 1-3 foot waves against your direction of travel, think very, very hard about if you want to go. Continue reading “Fish Creek, Wisconsin (8/1/17)”

We cross through Death’s Door into Wisconsin (7/29/17)

Start: Northport MI Anchorage 0517
End: Washington Island Anchorage (Detroit Island), 1636 central (1736 Eastern)
Total Distance: 71.7 nm ***(new high for our trip)
Time: 12:19 ***(new high for our trip)
Average Speed: 5.82 kts

I had a flashback to my Army days this morning. Specifically Army training and how you start with your tasks done under benign condition to make sure you know how to execute the thing you want done. Then you change the conditions to make it more challenging and to more closely reflect the conditions of combat. Once you have mastered it in the day, then do it at night. Do it when you are tired and at night. Do it when you are tired, at night, down a member of your team. You get the idea. Continue reading “We cross through Death’s Door into Wisconsin (7/29/17)”

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