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Sunday 25 March 2007 Kyle - Mill Creak to Norfolk

After sleeping in (and how) we woke up to a sunny morning with light winds that were expected to increase into the 20's from the North for the trip to Norfolk. When we were pulling up the anchor we discovered that it had such a firm grip on the mud, that we could barely get it un-stuck (very pleasing since this is exactly the quality you want in an anchor - we had fitted an A100 spade anchor, in place of the Danforth provided with the boat). We left Mill Creek at 2pm, headed into the bay and set sail. As we headed south for the long leg to Norfolk, the winds gradually increased and the seas gradually got bigger and rougher. We reduced sail, once, then again and found the boat to be very comfortable. We were getting knocked around a lot, and all the noises the boat made in rough seas will take some time to get used to, but the ride was much more comfortable than we would have had on Prydwen (or any equivalent monohull). I would say no worse than driving a 4 wheel drive over a bumpy road. Maryanne went off watch for a nap and to stay out of the cold, and I found it necessary to reduce sail yet again. As we approached the entrance to the Atlantic, the seas became bigger and rougher with the waves making many interesting noises as they forced each other back and forth between the hulls. Unlike a monohull, I found I was able to get up and walk away from the wheel periodically to check things and return to find the boat still steering a straight line. Maryanne came back and reported she had slept well.

Kyle At the Helm

Kyle At the Helm

One of the most memorable moments of the trip for me was when Maryanne made me soup. We were flying along at 8kt with two reefs in the gib and a reef in the main, and I sat inside at the table and ate soup out of a bowl as if I were sitting in someone's kitchen. I did not need to hold the bowl, nor brace myself. Darkness fell just as we pulled into the Elizabeth River at the foot of the bay. We had a fast reach down the harbor channel and decided instead of going back to the dock, we would anchor at Hospital Point. We had originally anticipated the trip would take much longer, but since we were making such good time,we decided to not spend our spare time just at the dock, but spend another night at anchor. We anchored at low tide in 4' of water (te he), tucked way up out of range of other boats. With most of the journey done, we would be able to sleep in the next day and so were able to watch the Norfolk sky line from our bed as we fell asleep without even having set an alarm for the next day.

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