Ships Log August 11 - 12, 2005

We reluctantly left Mac at 10:00 AM and sailed around the east end of the island to see Arch Rock from the water. It was a seven-hour sail to the village of Detour, Michigan.

The last time we were in Detour was 10 years ago when we were inexperienced in voyaging. It was a cold and stormy night. (geeezeee-admin.) We were sailing the little Windsong up the narrow channel between Detour and Drummond Island to seek shelter from the storm. Visibility was near zero in the driving rain. We were looking for the marina and the soggy chart indicated unlit Frying Pan Island very near by, but we could not see it.

Without warning, a ferryboat left the near shore and charged into our path. While we desperately worked to avoid the ferry and the invisible island, Rana noticed new lights in the channel where there were none before. They were very high off the water. They belonged to a giant freighter bearing down on us. A number of choices were presented; all of them seemed to lead to disaster. We chose the risk we could not see and edged away from the ships and toward the island. It was the correct decision since we are here to tell the tale.

Valuable lessons were learned that night: you are at risk in strange congested areas in poor visibility without radar. We love our new radar. Where ferry crossings are marked, assume they will charge out without any horn signal. When in freighter lanes, keep a constant watch for their lights. This time, as we approached Detour in the bright sunlight, we were able to easily find all of the obstacles that menaced us that night.

Ships Log August 11-12 2005

Since we just put 50 hours on our newly rebuilt engine, we spent the early morning changing the oil.

We left Detour at 10:30 AM and headed for Meldrum, Ontario on Manitoulin Island.

Manitoulin is the largest freshwater island in the world and will be our first port on foreign soil.

We crossed the Canadian border at 1:00PM and hoisted the Canadian courtesy flag on the starboard spreader. It rose with our Seven Seas Cruising Association pennant.

Years ago, we arrived at Meldrum Bay and cleared Customs with a simple telephone call. It is now a different world and times have changed. We anchored at Meldrum at 5:30PM and rowed ashore and immediately called customs on the provided direct line. We were instructed to bring our boat to the dock and await Customs Officers. Without going into details, let's just say they were very through in their search and finished after 8:00PM. We were issued a four month CANPASS. You can obtain such a pass in advance on the Internet, but you still must undergo a Customs interview and search.

We had a celebratory dinner of delicious fresh Lake Huron Whitefish at the Meldrum Bay Inn. The owners, Jay and Lee Niver recently bought the 103-year-old inn and have established a well-deserved reputation for a pleasant atmosphere and good food. Jay is a former journalist from Ohio and Lee is a psychologist from South Africa.

That night a rainstorm and cool weather blew into Meldrum and we set off for Gore Bay.

Lighthouse photos through out our site are of ones we passed and relied on for safe navigation.