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My First Destination-Sailing Passage or Learning How to Sail

Captain's Log - April 23, 2024. Blaine Washington

Up until now, as far as sailing is concerned, all I've done is to simply "go for a sail". There was no destination, no purpose to the trip other than to learn how to set sails and manage the wind. The real challenge comes when I decide that I need to get to "B" from "A".

...never go faster than the speed that you would be willing to hit something at.

Well, yesterday I swallowed a little harder, cast off my lines from the dock in Point Roberts, WA and made my way to Blaine, WA. As I write this, I am sitting in my boat at the marina visitors dock. Blaine is a wonderful little border town! I am enjoying some civilization...a bakery and coffee shop this morning and all sorts of stores and shops to get re-supplied. Point Roberts is beautiful, but it is just dead as far as amenities go. That frosted cinnamon bun this morning was the best thing I've ever tasted after 5 months of no fresh baking. L&L Bakery is where I went and Madison, with a constant beaming smile, served me my coffee and gooey treat. We chatted about adventure travel and the YouTube channel and I asked her about options for a haircut and beard trim. No luck there I'm afraid.

While visiting a hair salon that couldn't fit me in, I got to visiting with a man and we had so many things in common! He is only 18 days into being the new owner of the Black Forest Steak House here in town. We hit it off and he's invited me over to the restaurant on Thursday to buy me a beer. Of course I'll need a steak to wash that beer down.

This is what I was hoping to achieve with the channel. I am happy to just collect a series of friends and memories over the coming thousands of miles of adventure travel. Visiting with folks and seeing where they live...this is as much a part of this trip as the sailing.

Learning to sail.

a scene with John at the helm of his sailboat. He is looking down at the camera on a cloudless day. The sun is brightly shining and he is smiling behind his long, white beard.
My first destination-sail. April 22, 2024 Point Roberts, WA to Blaine, WA

Sailing here yesterday was relatively uneventful, but let's be honest, it is only a 12 mile trip. I had a broad reach wind out to the bell buoy off of Lily Point about 5 miles from home, and then I made the run, almost straight downwind towards White Rock, BC and the town of Blaine.

It was a little stressful to single-hand the sails and approach the harbour entrance, but I managed that relatively easily. From shore, I suspect I would've looked like I'd done it many times before. So that was a great experience.

The next stress was docking alongside the visitors dock with a stiff port breeze blowing me off the dock. But again, like a pro, I caught the attention of a nearby boater and simply asked for a hand. John (the new friend) was more than willing and hopped off of his huge cabin cruiser to tie off my bow line as I stepped off the bow.

Actually, that is one thing that I have impressed myself docking maneuvers and boat handling skills. There is a lot of common sense involved with this I suppose, but then again, without prior experience, I can see how folks struggle. I've had many hours of handling small boats as a professional fishing guide in the arctic. I really believe that has helped a great deal with my boat-handling near docks and in marinas nowadays. There is a rule that I always obey...never go faster than the speed that you would be willing to hit something at.

So, there you go. I am in Blain, WA and I am waiting on my friend Dana to arrive on Thursday so we can do some sailing and eating and drinking of very fine wine! You will get all of those details on an upcoming video. Dana is a Sommelier and chef who really wants to learn to sail and be on the ocean herself. I'll introduce you guys soon!

Looking ahead from the cockpit of the sailboat. A vast ocean ahead.
Out in the middle of the Straight of Georgia

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