Joe McCary Aeolus II, Catalina 27 #4795
West River, MD USA
38° 50’ 25.54N, 76° 31’ 52.20W The Chesapeake Bay
Photo by Don Wagner
Thomas Point under sail.
To quote Mark
years from now, you will be more disappointed by the
things you did not do than by the things you did do. So,
throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor.
Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore....
Following this spirit,
in 2007 Mary and I purchased the "new" boat,
Catalina 27, Aeolus II.
is an artist whose medium is the
Sailing: "The fine art of getting wet and being sick while slowly going
Chesapeake does not impress those who know
it best as the grandest or most of anything.
For all its size and gross statistics, it is
an intimate place where land and water
intertwine in infinite verities of mood and
William W. Warner "Beautiful Swimmers"
When my nephew, Ryan, came for a day's sail, I thought it might be fun
to fly a pirate flag.
Here, I am adding a pirate quote.
ship is, you know, it's not just a keel and a hull and a deck
and sails, that's what a ship needs.
But what a ship is,... really is, is freedom."
Depp, as Captain Jack Sparrow
Pirates of the Caribbean-
finding freedom and intimate beauty is what Aeolus II is about, freedom to escape
our daily grind, even if just for a few precious moments.
This website is about all of those days, both the good and the bad.
And about how we paint our canvass, The Chesapeake Bay.
Read below to follow the sailings of Aeolus II and the friends
and family who sail on her. Fair winds and following seas to all.
The 2011 Sailing Season
June 29th, 2011
75°f, 5-10 knots W
finsihed the week with the grand daughters visiting from
New England. We
didn't get to take them sailing but we did have fun.
Then on Wednesday evening the
29th the temps were down there was a gentle breeze so we decided
to go for an evening sail. It was glorious! Cool and gentle, We
left the dock just as the race boats were coming in, then we
sailed till about 11pm.
We spent the first leg dodging
the returning race boats and while I don't race I do give way so
as not to hinder them. We were rewarded by a beautiful sunset
June 20 & 22, 2011
85°f, <7 knots NW
The next phase of out of
town guests Was an old high school classmate,
Candy and her grandson Sky from Sarasota Florida. Both
Candy and Sky had been sailing so the light summer
breeze was not welcomed. We talked and drifted,
drifted and talked. Then when we couldn't take any
more we retreated to dinner gathering of more friends at
Mike's Crab House on South River. The day was a big
success, even if the sailing was light. Sky
enjoyed it though and we arranged for him to crew on a
friend's Melges 24 in Wednesday Night's Beer can Races,
June 14, 2011
75°f, <7 knots NW
is the month for out of town guests. We started with
Mary's cousin and her husband visiting from Natchez MS.
Billy Ray had never been to DC so when on Sunday the
weather on The Bay was just too threatening we opted for
a quick visit to the DC Monuments. We did the US
Capitol, the Einstein Memorial and the Vietnam Memorial
and the Lincoln Memorial before retreating home.
Monday was the sailing day BUT, the weather wasn't
cooperating so we went Harpers Ferry with a short side
trip to Burketsville. We all had a grand time
climbing up to Jefferson's Rock, but the most fun was
the hill we coasted up in Burketsville. Neither
Billy Ray or Liz had been on a sailboat before so this
was an entirely new experience. We received a
gallon of fresly picked Mississippi Blueberries, and we
are sure we got the better deal.
May 21, 2011
70°f, 7-10 knots SSE
No End in Sight!
It was widely
posted in all forms of news media that the world was to come to
an end on the 21st of May at 6pm local time... so what better
time to go sailing. Mary and I spent "our last day" on The Bay
just sailing around. We didn't need a destination, we needed to
enjoy ourselves on the last day. And enjoy we did, lunch was a Italian sub from
Lido's in Edgewater, and after filling a spare gas tank we
shoved off into a nice 7 know SSE breeze. It was
glorious. At 5 pm with the end just an hour away we turned back.
Just as the magic hour passed we made our last turn toward the
slip. I noted on Facebook that either it was a jinx or we were
in heaven. BUT, No end of the world today. We buttoned up the boat
and we off to a nice dinner at Deep Creek. We survived to
sail another day. Next weekend is THE wedding in NJ for
our nephew, David and his bride Ariel. Our granddaughter,
Claire will be a flower girl, perhaps a picture. To the
rest of our sailing friends, ENJOY the Memorial Day weekend.
May 12, 2011
64°f, 10-14 knots S
predictions for the weekend is rain, plus I have to work
Saturday morning at The Shakespeare Theatre in DC, so today
looked like a great day to go sailing. We thought of going
yesterday but the wind was VERY light <5 knots. So today
was to be the day! I finished up a few work loose ends this
morning and then we drove down to the boat. We had a nice lunch
at Ledos Pizza in Edgewater and then to the boat. We found
a very high tide with the water just under the dock, but after
some gymnastics we made it onto the boat and left the slip.
We sailed out into the river and out into The Bay. It was
glorious, making 5.5 to 6.5 knots most of the afternoon.
The GPS continues to work great and the iPad even proved to be
fun to have on board. I ran the iNav app and it was pretty
good comparing it to the GPS. Then I turned the iPad to
the camera mode and shot some images followed by some videos.
We returned to the dock by a bit after 6pm and
then after buttoning up the boat we went to dinner at the
Edgewater Green Turtle. It was a glorious Spring day, Mary and I
had a great time just the 2 of us sailing. Sometimes it is
better not to share, today was one of those days.
April 30, 2011
65°f, 0-15 knots N
Strange day on The
Bay. After several days of rain and bad storms in the
area, even some tornados, the wind was forecast to be 10-12
knots N and temps about 70. So, we asked my brother, Mike
and his wife Barbara to go for the day. After a nice
breakfast near home, we left for the boat. We stopped and
picked up some sandwiches for lunch. We pulled out of the
slip about 1pm. We motored out of West River and raised
sails just past the Red #4. The wind was about 10 knots
and we tacked out of the river. A short while later the
wind died to 0 and we sat bobbing around for about 10 minutes.
When it returned it was blowing about 18 knots and we
heeled over, rail down. We decided to sail into Rhode
River. We bumped bottom near Camp Letts and turned around
and sailed back out to West River. As we neared the mouth
of Rhode we decided to put a reef in the main. That was a
good decision as we sailed out into about 15-18 knots. Around
5pm we turned for the slip and sailed wing & wing until we
turned into the channel. After cleaning up the boat we
headed to Deep Creek restaurant for a great dinner.
April 14, 2011
First Sailing Day
63°f, 5-9 knots NE
Finally a sailing day! Long time High School friend, Steve
Ellis from Arizona, was in town and the sun was out, so it
seemed like the perfect day for a sail. Mary and I stopped
and picked up some lunch on the way to the boat and we applied
the new stickers then when Steve arrived a little before noon.
We shoved off and got underway by 1pm.
Our new Garmin GPS worked well, although we had
to take a few minutes to get the heading line and compass rose
to show. The AIS worked well, although I learned we have
to select a target ship to see the projected route and speed.
My next GPS exercise will be to create routes and waypoints.
We returned to the slip just after 5pm and by
the time we buttoned up the boat it was almost 6. After
catching up on some friends with my slip landlord the three of
us were off to Pirates Cove for dinner. Steve is from
Arizona and doesn't get much chance for Maryland crab cakes so
that was the order of the day.
Above is today's track and on the right is the new GPS, easily
visible in bright sun, quite an improvement.
April 3, 2011
Not a Sailing Day
55°f, 5-9 knots NE
Today was a
fun day. I had ordered a new GPS and a new VHF. Today was
the day to install them. To make the project complete I
had also ordered a swing mount from West Marine in Annapolis.
It was their large Ram-Mount. When I took the Garmin 740s our of
the box I realized it was too wide for the Ram-Mount, so I also
bought a small teak plank to mount it on and off set to fit in
the companionway. After several hours of drilling and
cutting and mounting the new Standard Horizon GX-2100 (VHF with
AIS) and the Garmin 740s were installed. New
problem, the VHF has an internal GPS and a AIS receiver.
But the radio is mounted in the cabin and its internal GPS
struggles for signal. BUT, when connected to Garmin Chartplotter
I receive AIS positions perfectly. All that remains is to mount
the Sonar transducer. That pleasure is saved for another
day. I will shoot some pictures the next time I am down
and report back.
March 27, 2011
Not a Sailing Day
36°f, 9 knots NE
Yesterday was the first
chance I have had to visit the boat in several weeks.
We picked up "The Old Barracuda" AKA, my mother-in-law
and went first to lunch at the Boatyard Bar & Grill in
Eastport. Mary and & I each had a
delightful Grilled Grouper Sandwich. Then it was off to
find a swing arm for the new GPS. I stopped at Fawcetts
and was disappointed to learn they do not carry in stock
any electronics. Next stop was West Marine and I
ordered a swing arm from them, which should be in on
Tuesday. I had ordered a new VHF from West Marine,
a Standard Horizon with AIS to help the new GPS. I
am excited. The GPS arrived while we were in
Florida, a new Garmin 740s. I also have picked up a
in-hull transponder and the new G2 Vision chip. I
am hoping to get the units installed in the next couple
weeks. And I will do a review in after a month or
so of use.
At the boat, the bilge was
dry (always a good sign) and everything looked fine. I
lowered the engine and started her up with no problem.
She ran for almost a half an hour. I have the new
registration stickers and a new Bay Fishing stamp.
I think it is time to schedule a haul out to have the
bottom painted, so another spring chore.
I also noted the end of
the year totals from Cluster Map for the website, for
the past year the total hits are:
2010 to 9 Feb 2011: 1,340 visits. Not too bad for a
small boat website. Almost as impressive is the
world map of visitors.
Each red dot marks the location of one of our readers
and the list below shows 23 countries.
pages to see:
Click above link to see my last
(there is no easy return to this page)