Sunday, July 27, 2008

Bay of the Benjamins, North Channel

It may be blasphemous to say out loud and in mixed company, but we really didn't like The Benjamins. Oh, the scenery is quite lovely -- pink quartz rocks with veins of other colors and interesting rock outcroppings on land and in the water. But ...

We had joked that the way people talk about the Fabled Benjamins, that they were probably filled with boats rafted together like the "Play Pen" at the Grand-Ohio Beach in Chicago. While it wasn't quite like that, it was quite noisy and not as relaxing as other anchorages that we've visited.

There is a cool magnetic field around the Benjamin Islands that you have to be careful about. It causes a compass deviation of about 20 degrees.

South Benjamin was quite full when we poked our bow in -- over 20 boats were there -- so we went over to the Bay of the Benjamins and found a spot. That's when we started noticing the buzzing. People were zooming their dinghys around like jet-skis. Prior to this, the loudest we ever heard a dinghy was a quiet putt-putter-putt-putter. And new boats, arriving at the anchorage, would send people on dinghys in to find "the best spot". Unlike us, who think any spot that allows our anchor to get a good bite is "the best spot". We're just happy if we aren't dragging our anchor as we drift toward shore, boulders, or big expensive boats.

At least the roaring wind and thunder from the storm that moved in drowned out the karaoke from the rafted power boats. Yes, of course, a front moved through and picked up some major wind and waves, putting us on "Anchor Watch" as we had Port Sheldon flashbacks. We had set two anchors but Phil kept fiddling with one of them until a gust of wind broke it free. (That's not true! It must have landed on that flat rock that the GLCC Cruising Notes warn you not to run into. We didn't run into it, we just tried to anchor to it.) The main anchor held tight, though it was a scary time as the wind tried to decide from which direction it would blow so as best to dislodge our remaining anchor.

A duck family swam out to visit during the storm which provided a nice distraction.

The storm moved on, after probably less than a half hour, though it felt like two, and it was a very nice sunset.

No comments: