Sunday, 3 September 2017

Hash-tah-buh-lah to Port Dover

We stayed in Astabula for a couple of days and went to lunch with friends. They then took us for a drive in the countryside, through an area with many Amish farms and businesses.
This barn theatre is near their home
Once a professional summer stock theatre it now houses community theatre.

Docked 3 boats down from us was this perfect boat dog, waiting for it's owners.
"Is that them?"
"No (sigh)"
I have been coming here for 3 years now and, walking downtown, I see this boat is still for sale, on the hard.
Makes me sad. I hope someone decides its worth a $500 (or best offer) gamble and loves this boat again.
Finished off the sketch of downtown that I started last year (and was interrupted by a thunderstorm)
Walked up to the museum in the old lighthouse keeper/customs office building. A brochure described one of the rooms that houses artifacts from The Ashtabula, a car ferry built in 1906 to take railway cars full of coal across the lake to Port Burwell, before the proliferation of lake freighters (Lakers). It sunk after a collision in Ashtabula harbour in 1958.
Through the telescope I could see, clearly, 3 bald eagles circling over the gravel piles.
Information boards outlined the extensive rehabilitation of the river that involved dredging most of the harbour and river to remove the toxic sediment from decades of industrial use and naturalizing much of the river bank.
The fish have come back to the river, spawning in the shallows and marshes up by the yacht club and supporting a thriving sports fishing industry.
Another boat dog; "Scupper". He and his owners live aboard their boat at the AYC and he travels around in the basket on the front of his owners bike. He's a busy little dog; visits people at a local nursing home, chases the Canada geese at the club and is generally loved by everyone.
The trip back to Erie was a sunny motorsail and after Paul had finished his magazine on the foredeck, I took over the chair at the bow and fell asleep, rocking gently in the sun, and got a sunburned nose.
We stayed one day in Erie, worried about when to cross the lake, home, as winds were high. We decided to cross back in spite of 20 to 25 knot winds on the nose (ENE). It turned out not to be directly on the nose, or quite as high as expected, and we were able to use the sail to increase the speed of our crossing.
We had been gone for 2 weeks, had some lovely days of sailing, some lovely days of motor sailing, seen a couple of new ports, explored small towns and a big city, had some delicious meals both on the boat and out and generally enjoyed being on the lake and the friendliness of other boaters.

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