The End of a Journey

Just like all stories, or in our case a wonderful dream, things do have a way of coming to an end. After almost two years in the build process, Spirit was commissioned in Ipswich, England. We have experienced almost 3 years of fun sailing over 12,000 nautical miles in the waters, cities, ports in Majorca, Sardinia and Corsica in the Mediterranean, to just about every island in the Caribbean. We’ve experienced an Atlantic crossing with stops in the Canary Islands and Cape Verde off the coast of Africa as well as spirited Oyster Regattas in Antigua and the British Virgin Islands. During the hurricane seasons Spirit headed north, via Bermuda, to the U.S. northeast coast where we explored Cape Cod, Martha’s Vineyard, Nantucket, Maine and Long Island. The list goes on.

It’s with these wonderful memories, our friends who were able to share Spirit with us, and our crews, that we sadly close this chapter in our lives. It’s been a great run, a bucket list fulfilled, a dream that indeed came true.

For all who have followed this website we sincerely hope, in some small way, you were able to vicariously share in our experiences.

This will be the last post before our website is tucked away into the family archives. But, before concluding, below are just a few special photos of Spirit’s incredible journey.  We can only wish you a “bon voyage” as you seek your own incredible journeys.

The yacht Spirit is born in early 2014

Our good friends Pat and Teri have been with us on this journey from the very beginning

Over a year of detailed finishing work

Spirit’s christening in 2015

Dick, Pat & David – A cold English Channel transit to the Mediterranean

Our first crew – Tom & Hannah

Friends we met along the way

Anchored in a port on southern Majorca

Our afternoon Sangria with Pat & Teri in Port de Soller, Majorca

The isle of Cabrera south of Palma

Dinner with Jim & Sue in Andratix, Majorca

Drinking Mojitos in Palma (the right way) with Denny and Betty

Off to dinner with David and Peggy – somewhere on Majorca

The coastline just east of Bonifacio, Corsica

The port of Bonifacio

Bonifacio at night

Mastering a selfie with John and Linda in Sardinia

Dan & Marcia arriving in Portisco, Sardinia

Heading off to happy hour with Bill & Sara

Spirit just after the start of the Atlantic crossing in Las Palmas, Canary Islands

David looking on (in disbelief) as Pat lands dinner, fresh from the Atlantic

Fresh Mani Mahi in the middle of the Atlantic – not bad

Approaching the finish line in St. Lucia after 15 days at sea

Spirit’s track across the Atlantic (Second place finish in our class)

One happy, and tired, crew – L-R Pat, Lars, Tom, Dick, David & Hannah

Racing (and winning our class) in the 2016 Antigua Oyster Regatta

Family time in the BVI with our son and his daughters

Jeff and our granddaughters, Katie and Abby, holding things up in the BVI

A favorite secluded beach on Guana Island, BVI

Feeding our daughter’s family in the BVI

Grandma & Grandpa’s “quality time”

At peace – Collier and Ann taking it all in off the coast of Martha’s Vineyard

Our most recent crew, Leah & Erik

Spirit crossing the finish line (and winning our class) in the 2017 BVI Oyster Regatta

Spirit team receiving awards for finishing first in her class (minus Nick who had to leave a day early) L-R Erik, Pat, David, Leah & Dick

The quiet beauty of the Spanish Virgin Islands

A front row seat for the America’s Cup in Bermuda

The Charm of the New England coast

Spirit anchored at the head of Some Sound as a fog bank rolls in

The lobster trap buoys of Maine – they’re everywhere!

Charming Maine seaports like Camden

Pat, still trying to master knots

Approaching New York on the East River

New York City as seen from the Hudson River

Anchored off Grace Bay, Providenciales, in Turks & Caicos

A beautiful night at anchor on the eastern end of Provo

A three-year track of Spirit’s journeys

Just one of 100’s of sunsets. A fitting end to our incredible journey.

Back to the Islands

Since our last post in late September where we cruised the waters of Long Island, Spirit has sailed down the East coast and spent some time in Charleston, SC then waited out the Caribbean hurricane season in Georgetown, SC.

In early December Spirit’s crew made the 800 nautical mile transit to the Turks & Caicos Islands and joined our family for Christmas and New Years anchored off Grace Bay beach in front of our condo in Providenciales. A glorious holiday was had by all.

In preparation for Spirit’s next transit to Grenada in a few days (almost 1,000 nautical miles) she moved to the eastern end of Providenciales and enjoyed a full moon evening captured by the yacht Mojo who was kind enough to share the photo below.

We’re looking forward to once again enjoying the beauty of the Windward and Leeward Islands as we’ll be heading north from Grenada to Antigua starting in February. More memories to be shared

We hope all who follow our blog had a blessed Christmas and a Happy New Year.

Spirit’s track from Georgetown to the Turks & Caicos Islands

Anchored off Grace Bay, Providenciales

Escaping the arctic temperatures back home

A beautiful night at anchor

Spirit’s Post Hurricanes Trip to Long Island

After being hold up in Newport for several days while the winds, gusting 30 – 40, were howling through Newport Harbor, we had a welcome break in the weather. Hurricane Jose headed east and dissipated out over the Atlantic and Hurricane Maria decided not to follow earlier projections and gradually headed northeast, steering away from Newport and Long Island. So much for Ma Nature!

Once we headed out of Newport Harbor en route to Block Island we were amazed at the calm seas, and unfortunately the lack of any good sailing winds – a sharp contrast to the previous days. During the summer months Block Island is a favorite destination (23 miles SW of Newport and 20 miles ENE of the very eastern tip of Long Island) but once inside the Great Salt Pond anchorage all we could see were a mass of mooring buoys – without boats. Maybe it was because it was Monday, or the season, or the earlier projected hurricane paths, but we were one of the few visiting yachts – very nice!

After a walk into “town” where we had to at least sample Block Island’s signature drink, a Mud Slide, we headed back to Spirit where she was glowing in an incredible sunset that painted the entire horizon orange – one of the best sunsets we’ve seen on all our adventures. The next morning it was off for a two-hour nature trail hike along the northeastern shore where we saw the Clay Head cliffs and the ocean surge from the now distant Jose.

From Block Island we were off to the eastern tip of Long Island at Montauk, another quiet destination populated mostly by Sport Fishers – an ideal location for deep-sea fisherman. I think we were one of the only sailboats in the marina.

From the tip of the south fork of Long Island we headed northwest to the tip of the north fork, rounded the old lighthouse and anchored in Orient Harbor. Again, a day of no sailing but the water that was as smooth as glass along with the vibrant blue skies made for a very peaceful day. Once settled we went for a walk in Orient – a small hamlet with tranquil streets lined with huge exotic trees and well kept homes, some dating back to the 1700’s. It was almost like a Disney movie set capturing what once typified small town America.

The next morning we headed around Shelter Island to Sag Harbor, a place we visited about the same time last year. Sag Harbor is mostly a National Historic Site whose history centers on its days as a whaling port. Today, being part of the Hamptons, it’s a small town mecca of shops and restaurants making it a very popular tourist attraction.

The next morning we had some beautiful sailing winds and Spirit wanted to “spread her wings”. After a brief stop at a secluded beach and creek in a Shelter Island nature preserve we unleashed Spirit for an incredible 9 – 10 kt sail across Little Peconic Bay to Cutchogue Harbor in New Suffolk. Cutchogue is Erik’s home and his parents were kind enough to let us use their 20′ runabout the next day to explore a remote cove on the other side of Little Peconic Bay – the crew had a picnic lunch prepared and we spent a couple hours enjoying nature and the surroundings.

Our final day was a rainy one as we made the two hour trip northeast to Greenport – a quaint seaside village bordered by the Peconic Bay on one side and Long Island Sound on the other. Because of it’s deep and protected harbor, Greenport became a major whaling port in the early 1800’s, then an oystering center but now its claim is mostly tourism and its proximity to the many Long Island wineries.

So our Northern East Coast season comes to an end and Spirit and her crew, Erik and Leah, will soon be heading back south (once the hurricanes get out of the way) where Spirit will spend Christmas with our family in Turks & Caicos. On the way south we’ll join some friends on board while Spirit makes a stop in Charleston – then to Florida and on to the islands.

Keeping a watchful eye on hurricanes Irma, Jose and Maria

Newport Harbor – hello sunshine!

Block Island Sound – the calm after the winds

A very quiet Block Island anchorage – where did everybody go?

Typical architecture on Block Island

An extraordinary Block Island sunset

The Clay Head cliffs on Block Island

…and the fog rolls in

Entering Montauk Harbor

Montauk Marina – where are the sailboats?

Sue finding rocks and shells on the beach outside of the Montauk jetty

The Long Beach Lighthouse entering Orient Point

Long Beach, aptly named

Orient Harbor

The charming tree lined streets of Orient

Historic Orient architecture

Spirit from the Orient Yacht Club

End of a “really tough” day

Landing on Shelter Island

Leah’s photo of the week – a creek on Shelter Island

A smooth 9.5 kts across Little Peconic Bay

An incredible Cutchogue Harbor sunset

Exploring coves on Erik’s parent’s runabout

An egret standing watch in a cove

Leah and Sue relaxing for the ride home after a picnic lunch in a cove

Spirit’s track from Newport to Long Island