Afternoon sail to PHL at slack before high tide with 10 to 15 knot wind from the east gusting to 20, forecast evening thunderstorms.
Practice setting first reef while underway; bow to the wind, lock tiller tamer, slack mainsail halyard and tie off first luff reef at goose neck then tension halyard, tie off first leech reef, and tension reef line as new outhaul.
Returning to slip a fast ebb has begun and building gusts in opposition to the ebb, port side to the dock is not going to work, motor off and come in starboard to dock with assistance from marina neighbors.
Quick calculation debris on the water covers a distance of 40ft alongside the dock in less than 5 seconds, 8ft/sec, 480ft/min, 28,800ft/hr, 5.45 statute miles/hr, 4.75 knots. Ulladh's hull speed is 5 knots. The guesstimate was 2hrs after high tide, one hour before peak tidal flow.
Tuesday August 18, 2009
Afternoon sail, low 90's F, ebb tide after high. Sail to Mifflin Bar Dike on a beam reach come about and tack in close reach with building wind shifting from out of the south to out of southwest in opposition to my course and the ebb tide back to the marina. I had previously increased tension on the forestay and appear to have reduced weatherhelm.
Smooth dock, motor against the tide, then motor in neutral as I coast to snug against the floating dock.
Marina neighbor returning as I leave.
Wednesday August 19, 2009
Afternoon sail, low 90's F, 5 to 10 knot breeze steady from southwest.
Swift close reach to Eddystone with the ebb, then come about against the ebb and a swift beam reach return to Essington.
Smooth dock using same technique as Tuesday. Returned to dock at peak ebb flow, but tidal current was suppressed by a high pressure system at the mouth of Delaware Bay, which is also blocking the westward movement of Hurricane Bill. The tidal range and current is greater when a low pressure system is at the Bay mouth.
Sunday August 30, 2009
Three Forts Ferry from Delaware City to Fort Delaware on Pea Patch Island.
Built after the war off 1812 to protect Wilmington and Philadelphia from future naval attack, then during the Civil War used as a prison camp for up to 12,000 Confederate soldiers. The south battlement was modified for the Spanish American War, and last used during WWII as a garrison on the river.
The river narrows to 5 miles between Fort Dupont in Delaware and Fort Mott in New Jersey, with Fort Delaware on Pea Patch Island between them.
Moat supplied with water from open sluice gate at high tide. All 3 teirs of wall openings are gun ports with large naval cannons.
Courtyard with officers quarters.