Cap Goes for A Swim

27 April 2013, Powell Cay

Janet suggested we sail back to Green Turtle Cay to take advantage of the WiFi there and then sail up to Powell Cay while we had a few days of good winds for anchoring there. And so we did. We reached to GTC with staysail and main. From there to back NW to Powell we used the genoa only and kept a steady 7 knots on the meter. The weather was absolutely gorgeous; nearly clear sky, turquoise everywhere and 17 to 22 knots of wind. I know that seems a bit much, but after decades of Chesapeake light summer airs, it is nice to be sailing where, even when the wind is near 30kts, the configuration of these islands and cays can make for some great sailing. The breezier it gets, though, the fewer boats we see.

At our furl the sails point, my ball cap blew overboard on a gust. We hit the Man (cap) Over Board button on the chartplotter and fell off the wind to furl the genoa. That done, rather than follow the chartplotter course back to the cap’s assumed position, we motored slowly along the track we’d made. Two minutes later and 50 feet from the MOB waypoint, Janet hollered, “Slow Down,” and she scooped the hat from the water with a boat hook. The cap was bouncing along the hull.

Why didn’t we follow the chart plotter’s suggested course? It would have brought us back to the cap with the waves right on our bow — cap on crest, see it, cap in trough, miss it. By backtracking, we had the waves abeam and could look along the tops and troughs, increasing our chances of seeing the cap. Still, eagle eye (literally) Janet only saw the khaki at our bow! Usually I wear bright yellow caps — the better for waving at folks. But my favorite isn’t so bright any more, and I got it in Alaska. Time for a new one. Chicken with stuffing and green beans for dinner.

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