To all those building, or still contemplating building a PocketShip, and following the various blog out there, the thought must frequently come to mind, “what happens after the build is finished?”. While building, you have frequent progress. Add a new bulkhead, painted, etc. Great! Take a picture and add it to the blog!
Once you start the sailing phase, it is hard to come across a new photo. Sure, you can post another photo of the same shot you’ve already posted a hundred times, off to the side with the boat and sail framing the shot. And in the thrill of sailing, it seems totally new, and you keep taking pictures! But once you look at them afterwards, it just looks like more of the same. And since us non-super-literate boat builder blogs are really more about the photos than our intellectual writing, we really don’t have much to blog about anymore.
But sometime you have a sailing experience that just makes you feel totally alive again. It has been a busy summer, with the whole house buying moving process of looking, negotiating, packing, moving, unpacking… you get the idea. So the boat has been sitting idle a bit, and last weekend was hot and windy. Just perfect for sailing.
Went out earlier in the summer, but one of those days where things just didn’t all go right. For example, half the dock space was closed due to invasive species clean-up, making it hard to launch and head back-in, etc. This time though, everything just went smoothly. Was relaxing, fun, and all done single handed. As one of the earlier Pocketships launched, I had come up with my own way of raising the mast, docking, etc. After watching John’s (from CLC) set-up video, I tried out some of his recommendations for the first time, and got to say, they really made it that much easier! Partially encouraged from Jon’s launching without the use of the outboard, but really due to the fact that somehow the oil had drained out of the outboard during the winter, I also practiced without the use of the outboard. Once you get the hang of it, it is so much more relaxing and pleasant not to deal with it. It is now only the starting, but also the raising back up, closing off the vent cap, etc. Even had to reef down a step – having the boat lean-to as he does in the video, worked out really well.
Anyhow, enough of this writing, here are some pictures. Okay, one more thing… that shallow draft really comes in handy on this lake (Lake Independence, MN). This allows you to sail around the island, in relative peace. The keel did hit something once (first time I have ever heard it). Heard a subtle hitting sound, accompanied by the sound of air passing through the hole the keel line runs through. The keel lifted up, and dropped right back down, as intended. Found a nice quiet area out of the wind, that led to some cool trails around the island, as well as some peaceful reading and music listening aboard.