Noctiluca - Five Islands, Witch Island, Maplejuice Cove, Rockland, Harbor Island
Second Cruise  - August, 2011
 Laurel, Laura, Sally help outfit the boat in Five Islands

We motored Noctiluca from its mooring in the Little Sheepscot River and found space on the Five Islands dock.  The dock landing required a bit of fine tuning by our dock crew but light winds eased the tension.

Pat and Sally organized the gear in our cabin and we were away from the dock at 11:00.
Leaving Five Islands Harbor

Motoring out of Five Islands' harbor at 3 knots allowed us to ease into
the Sheepscott River under building light winds.

Sails were raised as soon as we were away from the harbor.  Light 5-10 knot southwest winds offered a relaxed and easy morning's sail around Southport Island.

Once through Booth Bay on a slow run, a course change into John's Bay allowed an easy reach into the harbor at Witch Island (South Bristol, Maine).  Sailing onto anchor is our prefered choice in anchoring but winds out of nowhere at 0 knots dictated that we motor onto anchor.

Grilling at Witch Island

Icebox refrigeration offers two to three days of cold.   Fresh meat must be eaten in the early days of any cruise and grilled steak is a traditional first night's meal.
The Feast at Witch Island

Cell phone reception is spotty along the coast.  Occaisionally the mast acts as a cell phone tower and gives the only signal to one sitting on the boom.
Morning Sail through Muscongus Bay

August 4 came in partly cloudy and chilly.   09:00 offered too little wind and the departure from Witch Island was by motor.  Winds in John's Bay were too light to fight the rising tide under sail and the motor propelled us until we rounded Pemaquid Point.  Once our sail was raised,  one tack established an angle sufficient to allow a close haul on a light northerly breeze all the way to Maplejuice Cove. 

Maplejuice Cove

Maplejuice Cove in Cushing, Maine is a favorite anchorage. The cove is large, round, and offers a muddy bottom in 10 - 15 feet of water at low tide. We first sailed Noctiluca onto anchor here several summers ago.  The tradition continued as we  dropped anchor just as the boat came upwind and into irons.
Off to Explore the Olsen House (Andrew Wyeth Museum)

Andrew Wyeth painted the Olsen family and homestead throughout his career.  Maplejuice Cove's proximity to the Olsen house all but damands a visit. We found dinghy space among the lobster boats at the fishermen's docks in Cushing.

The quarter mile walk to the Olsen house took us through a small animal farm and passed severalo small houses of local fishermen. 

The Olsen house is a National Historic Monument and offers informational
tours explaining Andrew's Wyeth artistic relationship with the Olsens.  This
is the house seen in Christina's World.

A reproduction of the Wyeth lace curtain painting hangs alongside the window which inspired its creation.  The Olsen house has been stripped of all of its original furniture and rooms are now bare except for a solitary chair in each.

The uninsulated workshop housed tools, winter cordwood, dory storage and the outhouse.

The kitchen opens onto a preperation area where pies, and breads were once made.  Flours were stored below the counter in large bins.
Anchor raised and off to Rockland

We raised anchor at 08:00 on August 5 and Noctiluca motored down the St George's River to Hupper Island before raising sail and sailing through Muscle Ridge Channel.  Navigation in Muscle Ridge Channel is interesting as the navigational rules change from the typical "red right returning" mandate.  Here one needs to keep green on the right.  This truth was discovered on an earlier cruise when a shallow ledge located just to the right of a red nun found our keel .
Wing and Wing through Muscle Ridge Channel

The sail through much of the channel was on a beam reach.  As the day wore on, winds shifted and came over our transom allowing a wing and wing run through the last 2 miles of the channel.
Moored Below the Canning Factory

Motoring into Rockland Harbor presents a noticeable change from the tranquil, solitary times of earlier anchorages.  This mooring, located next to the factory, introduced Rockland as a noisy, busy place.  The annual Lobster Festival was in session ashore with crowds and noise filling the scene.  Kate and Jeff treated us to a dinner at Cafe Miranda and a stable bed for the night devoid of anchor checks.

Sunset Over Harbor Island

The weather forcast for August 6 called for strong winds and thundershowers arriving within 24 hours.  The mooring was dropped at 11:00 in an attempt to make as much distance toward home as possible.  Winds blew directly onto the bow forcing a day of motoring to Muscongous Bay.  In the afternoon a dense fog made for 50 feet visibility. The GPS chart did not extend as far as Rockland but paper chart and compass navigation brought us safely into False Whitehead Harbor to sit out the fog.  The anchor dropping coincided with the lifting of the fog and our run continued on.  We dropped anchor for the last time that day at 17:30 in Harbor Island cove to await the storm.
40+ Hours Anchored in a Storm at Harbor Island

Rain began hitting the cabin top early in the morning.  Sunrise revealed rain, fog, and building winds.  Our plan was to motor through the early winds of the storm to the protection of Witch Island.  Standing in our rain gear and with the motor  running we decided, rather, to avoid any storm related problems and to ride out the storm at anchor in Harbor Island Cove.

25+ Knot Winds and Hinckley That Dragged Anchor and Hit Us

Riding out a long storm requires knowledge of several skills including how to anchor properly, and how to pass the time with dominos, cards, and reading. Security was assured by 100 feet of nylon rode and 35 feet of chain.  Our attempt at remembering how to play rummy was interrupted, though, with a loud bang.  The Hinckley yacht just off our bow did not lay out enough anchor chain, dragged anchor, and collided with us.  Most of the force of the collision was absorbed by Noctluca's new anchor platform and little damage was done.   
Last Day Sail Back to Five Islands

Monday morning, August 8,  presented with thinning fog and clearing skies.  The anchor was pulled at 08:45 and two hours of motoring brought us to Pemaquid Point.   We raised sail at 10:45 and reached on moderate northeast winds across Booth Bay and into The Sheepscott River.  The last leg of our cruise saw us motoring through a rain shower to a Five Islands Yacht Club mooring in Five Islands Harbor.