Destination – Penobscot Bay, Maine (Part 8 – Newport Rhode Island)

August 1 – 31, 2005

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

This morning finds us getting ready to go… we have a quick, but oh so nice french toast breakfast

We need ice and fuel, so we pull up anchor and head on over to the fuel dock where we meet a most helpful lady by the name of Sarah… Sarah not only helped us with our diesel needs, but went out of her way to recommend a couple of great restaurants she had been to in Newport and pointed us towards the yacht club where we got a suggestion to stay at the Goat Island Marina just across from Newport, to avoid the “mess” in Newport proper.  We thanked everyone, said our goodbyes, pushed off and were on our way.

As with each new leg, this trip was to bring all new experiences… first and foremost, we were leaving the Long Island Sound; we would have nothing  but the Atlantic Ocean berween us and England!  And, let’s not forget, we would make landfall in a new state!

09:30 We made our way out of the harbor and made for RN “4” (one of the buoys marking the rocky shore) on a compass heading of 86 degrees magnetic doing about 5.1 knots… several minor course changes later, we turned Rocinante on a heading of 104 degrees magnetic, and settled in for a 3 hour leg.  3 hour leg? Wait, wasn’t that how it all started for Gilligan… a 3 hour tour?

Storm clouds in our wake - originally titled "time to change your shorts"

Storm clouds in our wake – originally titled “time to change your shorts”

Well, the weather started getting rough and our tiny ship was tossed and if not for the courage of the fearless crew, Rocinante would be lost… ok, so we turned and ran!  But on a sail boat “running” is like me “running” in the Chase corporate challenge… simply a figure of speech!

So we did the next best thing, we altered course to 50 deg. magnetic in order to cut some time off our trip… in reality, the black clouds turned out to be “more bark than bite” while they remained present, the wind died down fairly quickly, the seas calmed and we got just a few drops of rain…

At 15:40, I altered course yet again to avoid a more insidious danger from below… we had somehow found our way onto a torpedo testing zone!  Not quite sure what that meant, or if it was even still active, but thought it prudent to stay the heck out of  “the box”!   At 15:55, having safely made it around, we resumed our previous heading and made our way to Newport!

It wasn’t long, before we reached our destination and tied off at slip G86 at the Goat Island Marina without further incident… did I tell you about the Coast Guard Gunship coming up behind us? Another time perhaps…

Dinner at Marina Grill - Goat Island, Rhode Island

Dinner at Marina Grill – Goat Island, Rhode Island

That evening we decided to have dinner at the Marina Grill, and we were not disappointed!
Except for the fact that some silly rule precluded the use of glass out on the deck, our dinner was great, and I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend it… but lets get back to the issue…wine out of plastic cups? Come on, I felt like I should send it back and ask for a recent vintage of ThunderBird!

Ok, Ok, I’ll let it go!

The views where amazing that particular evening – as the sun began to set, Newport glowed; all the buildings glistining in the golden light.

Newport as seen from Goat Island Marina as the sun set

Newport as seen from Goat Island Marina as the sun started it’s descent

We headed back, satiated and ready for another night aboard our beloved Rocinante!

The following morning, as usual, we had a nice breakfast and then spent the morning planning our next leg… this one was going to be tough!

We need to get up Buzzards Bay.. now why the heck would you name a body of water we need to traverse after a flying scavenger that feeds on the remains of the dead? Couldn’t they call it “flat as glass bay”? Of course not! After that, we need to make our way through the Cape Cod canal… nasty current, so a vessel like ours (oh so lovely, but slow as all heck) is only allowed to enter with a favorable current… that would be somewhere around 10:00 PM Friday night which means that we would exit on the other side somewhere around midnight… gee, sounds like fun!

That being the case, we arranged for a slip on the Eastern end of the canal to spend the night before proceeding across to Provincetown the following morning.

With our next leg charted, we decided to take some time to scrub Rocinante down before catching the water shuttle from Goat Island to Newport for the day.

Quick side note has to be made: Maria is really starting to get the hang of using the parallel rules to determine course headings as well as the dividers to tick off distances on the chart.  On the trip to Newport, we calculated estimated positions on the chart every hour and were pretty much dead on when we compared our results to the GPS… we’re ready for anything!

We headed to Newport, had a ridiculously expensive lunch consisting of the worst crab cakes and mussels we’ve ever had (the fries were good) grabbed some Ben and Jerry’s and spent the next few hours walking around Newport.

Around 3:30 or so, we headed back, did a small load of laundry (hey, you do it while you have the chance you know?)

Tonight we’ll eat, drink and be merry… tomorrow?

Till next time,

Carlos & Maria
SV Rocinante…_/)
Till next time

Photos – Newport, Rhode Island

Castle Hill Lighthouse - Newport, Rhode Island

Castle Hill Lighthouse – Newport, Rhode Island


Small cottage by the sea... Castle Hill Inn - Newport, RI

Small cottage by the sea… Castle Hill Inn – Newport, RI


Fort Adams - Newport, Rhode Island

Fort Adams – Newport, Rhode Island


Dual Rainbows over the Newport mooring field

Dual Rainbows over the Newport mooring field


Goat Island Marina water shuttle

Goat Island Marina water shuttle