Monday, August 30, 2010

Sailing the Apostles - Day 1

I know that I said that the next post was going to be from the dock but, that just did not work out. There just was not enough time to think about writing a blog entry. So I will start from the begining and go through the whole trip. As you can probably imagine, this could be a bit long......

I left about 11:30am or so and headed up north 35 to Duluth. It was a cool day which I didn't mind as then I could have the windows cracked on my vehicle on the way up. The drive up to Duluth was very uneventful. Light traffic as most people were at work and the weather was great.

It has been probably 30+ years sice I had last seen Lake Superior and seeing her as I came over a hill to head in to Duluth was awe inspiring. Just the shear size of the body of water makes you feel insignificant. Seeing the lake did get me back in to the "mood" for the weekend, it had dulled a bit with the drive up the interstate.

Crossing the bridge over to Superior, WI was incredible and I wish I wasn't driving as I would have been snapping a few pics. I have never been to Superior, WI, quaint little town as far as I could tell. Only issue there was the train that held up traffic for about 10 minutes. Not really a big deal.

So after the train I head through town and on to WI Hwy13, the scenic route that kind of follows the edge of the lake. I didn't see the lake for a while as the trees were all in the way and I suppose the road really wasn't that close.

About an hour or maybe more from Bayfield I started to see the lake again through the trees. I was getting a bit more excited now and I finally found a wayside rest to pull in to. Basically a parking lot, some yard, a little permanent grill, and a glorified out house. The view was great. Seeing the lake and not seeing land on the other side.

I stayed for a few minutes to take some pictures, even contemplated climbing down the "hill", kinda steep, to get to the water's edge but thought the better of it. All I needed to do was slip and ruin the weekend with an injury.

So off I continued towords Bayfield. I took County Road - C as there was construction and the road was closed a few miles from the wayside rest. A bit of a detour but it actually brought me in through Washburn and then up a little north to Pike's Bay Marina where the boat was.

Getting to the marina was a relief. Finally here!!! I found the boat, not bad for 30 years old or so. Thom Burns, the owner of the school I go through, was on the boat as the binacle compass had broken. Glass top was off and some oil on the deck. I helped him get that off the boat and we chatted for a while. Was glad he was there as I got to the boat about 4:50pm and my instructor didn't get back in with a Family & Friends class until about 7pm. That boat was in a slip behind my new home for 4 nights.

Our boat's name is Aerie, a 70's vintage Islander, 36' LOA.

As I was talking to Thom he showed me around and I picked a place to sleep, I guess you could call it a berth. More like a thinly padded couch. But, it is a boat after all, not the Ritz.

Around 7:30pm I had had enough of sitting around waiting for the rest of the people to show up so I head over to the marina next door as they had a Bar/Restaraunt, and I needed food and yes, a beer or a couple.... Was kinda spendy but OK... After dinner I met up with one of my other class mates. Perry, a mainframe programmer from Plymouth. He convinced me to go back to the bar for a couple more..... yeah that was difficult. So we headed up for a couple more as our instructor, Vicki, went over to the boat she was just on to spend the night. When Perry and I got back, we noticed our other classmates, Rob & Shayla, Rob is an electrical engineer and his wife Shayla is a physical therapist for Fairview, were already in the v-berth sleeping so we decided to call it a night.

So now that I have been typing and organizing pictures, I think I will post only a day or two at a time. So this is the conclusion of day one of my trip. As the first volleyball game is tomorrow night and then football and volleyball two days later, I am thinking posting this all will take longer than the actual trip. Until the next post.......

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