Thursday, April 30, 2009
People who contributed to Lady Washington’s success will gather to pay tribute to the ship and her activities. Guests are expected to include past and present board members of Grays Harbor Historical Seaport Authority, shipwrights, captains and crews, elected officials, volunteers, former and current staff, donors, and supporters. Here’s a schedule of activities:
- 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. – Lady Washington opens for public tours.
- 6 p.m. – Dinner
- 6:30 p.m. to 7:15 p.m. – Program on the past, present, and future of Lady Washington
- 7:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. – Maritime music by Washington State musicians
- 8:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. – Community bonfire
Door prizes donated by Grays Harbor-area businesses will be awarded throughout the evening. Maritime music performers include shantyman Hank Cramer & Friends, folk musicians Burt & Di Meyer, and singer/songwriter Matthew Moeller. The audience will be encouraged to participate. Lady Washington will be joined by her companion ship, Hawaiian Chieftain, which will also be open for tours during the celebration.
Tickets for the Lady Washington 20th Anniversary Celebration are $50 each. Purchase tickets online at http://www.historicalseaport.org/, or call 800-200-5239. Table sponsorships are available for $500, which includes signage, recognition in the program, and two free tickets to the Lady Washington’s July 4th SPLASH Fireworks Cruise. Businesses interested in a sponsorship should contact Les Bolton, 800-200-2539, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Good evening ladies and gentlemen, and welcome to the Nautical Coterie. I will briefly sum up the minutes from our last meeting: April 28, 2009, Today has been an epic milestone in our whirlwind madcap race towards the Columbia River…hiding from the kraken…Half of our eleven crew sick with some malady or another…dodging fish boats…David Cottrell…white magic…Here’s to tall ship sailing, and how. And as the knuckles of approval gracefully rap the binnacle top, we can now proceed with today’s report.
I began my watch this morning to find that the weather had taken a turn for the better, and I was able to dress “as if I was going to the movies,” (D. Thurston) The previous watch had managed to break and hold the elusive six-and-a-half knot speed mark for a great duration of time. However, the wind dropped in its intensity, so by the time I took the helm, we dropped down to a regrettably admirable pace of a half and six knots, which we were able to keep for most of the four-hour period. The usual characters were on full display: fishing boats lining the northern waters with crab pots, and the like. Our nation’s finest even decided to drop by, sending a “really cool Coast Guard” boat. (M. Scibinico) They held station with us twenty feet off our transom, having a lovely conversation. The crew is ready and eager to be inside the confines of the Columbia River port side towns, and as this arduously memorable transit wanes closer and closer to its conclusion, it is important to remember one of our most important rules: the boat, your shipmates, then you.
I would happily sail, with any one of the fine crewman/woman on board any day, and despite all the twists and turns we have had, our spirits have not wavered. The time is 17:30, and with any luck, tomorrow’s report will put us up the river. Now with great reverence and fealty, I turn the floor of this noble Nautical Coterie over to our beloved number two, General of the Ginger Army, the daring, bold, courageous, Chief Mate Jimmy McManus…
And here's Jimmy:
After that long winded report there is on only this to add. Current time 1740, position 45’30.51N by 124’08.54W, 6nm abreast of Tillamook Bay, speed of 5.6 knots. Gentle north wind forecasted to freshen to 10 knots this evening. We’ve folded our last chart, nowing showing the approach to the Columbia River.
We'll post the report of the Lady Washington's entrance into the river as soon as we have it.
Wednesday, April 29, 2009
Lady Washington's crew--including bosun Mark Scibinico at left--are giddy over finally passing Cape Blanco on the Oregon Coast for the home stretch to the Columbia River. Mark wrote to us yesterday afternoon.
Today has been an epic milestone in our whirlwhind madcap race towards the Columbia River. After about a week of being spun in circles by giant waves and hiding from the kraken in Crescent City, we’ve been blessed with relatively calm seas and a WESTERLY wind. Happy was I to jump aloft to lose a topsail encouraging me that the brig Lady Washington might actually complete its journey northward. We’ve had a few setbacks. Half of our eleven crew sick with some malady or another, and the hair-raising nighttime adventures dodging fish boats who apparently have no radios. Now we’re cruising along at a blazing five knots northward and so long as board member David Cottrell can keep working his white magic and keep the bouy reports showing fair winds and seas up the coast, I finally believe I’ll at least see the Columbia River before the week is out. Here’s to tall ship sailing, and how.
First mate Jimmy McManus adds:
It is 1700 on 4/28/09, and our current position is 43’06.02N by 124’40.00W which is 15nm SW of Coos Bay. Motorsailing with fore staysail, fore topsail, and main staysail set and drawing nicely on a beam reach. Tonight’s forecast is saying 10-15 south winds, which will give us a nice boost forward, but will die out by midday tomorrow and became a calm north east wind. Can you feel that folks? The Lady is coming, is coming, is coming.
Lady Washington is scheduled to arrive in Kalama sometime Friday. Meanwhile, Hawaiian Chieftain will offer a Sunset Sail in Cathlamet this evening.
Tuesday, April 28, 2009
Designed for K-12 students, Voyages of Discovery is a unique educational experience that stimulates interest and motivates understanding of history, geography, math, science, teamwork and communication skills. The program takes place aboard the Lady Washington and Hawaiian Chieftain, and it is taught by tall ship sailors who receive special training as education program mentors. As the national economy deteriorated, teachers’ and schools’ budgets for field trips began to shrink. The Historical Seaport’s Education Program Sponsorships is a way for individuals and businesses to help local schools and teachers affected by budget cuts maintain access to these unique educational opportunities.
For details on how to sponsor an educational program, visit our Educational Program Sponsorship page. Or call us at 800-200-5239.
Despite the unplanned and unannounced decision to run for Crescent City [last week], we were well received and welcomed from the start. We were met at the dock by a reporter and were promised that the mayor would announce us on her morning radio broadcast; we saw more visitors on that Wednesday than we have an entire week at some scheduled ports. The entire town seemed to be extremely pleased with us coming in.
After the disappointing attempt at escape, we settled down into fairly standard 10-5 tours rotation while we waited for our weather opening, and every day we consistently saw over 120 people, the donation jar was always stuffed by the end of the day and everyone who crossed our deck seemed genuinely pleased with our arrival. We are now on our way up north again so far so good and we are looking forward to being up north.
First mate Jimmy McManus added these thoughts:
Well, Ladies and Gentlemen, we are on the move once again. The weather is looking fair and even favorable at this time, which might expedite our travel. The crew is missing our little companion ship [Hawaiian Chieftain], which with its new crew rotation will bring many new faces and old shipmates for countless grand adventures to be had on the Columbia River.
We here aboard the Lady Washington are determined to head north. Rather than weather beating us around, we’ve been earnestly at work keeping the ship prepared for sea so as to be ready for departure at a moment's notice. It is 2049, on 27 April, and we are underway just outside of Crescent City making 5 kts, and just made our turn north. Looking forward to see you all real soon.
Hawaiian Chieftain is now on her way to Cathlamet, Wash. where she'll welcome guests on Wednesday before moving on to Kalama.
Saturday, April 25, 2009
LW's experience over the past week is incredibly ironic, because her original schedule published last fall called for her to be in Crescent City about this time. (She had to cancel because of low bookings.) Clearly, the Great One Who Oversees the Universe is sending a message that's she's welcome in Crescent City, whether she wants to got there or not. And there's a wonderful silver lining. We have a lot of friends in Crescent City, and they've come down in droves to visit her, and the local newspaper, the Daily Triplicate, told her story.
Wednesday, April 22, 2009
First mate Jimmy McManus gives us a few more details:
Less then seven miles to the California Oregon border which is a torment to those on board who have stayed all thru the California trip and are itching to be in northern waters. We had a nice lull in the weather that gave us light and variable winds with 2-4 [foot] seas. Allowing us to make some great northerly progress. Tonight’s forecast is a small craft advisory, already the winds have picked up to 10-15 knots NNW, seas have built to six feet. Offshore from Cape Blanco to Pt St George, they are calling for a full gale. So [we] are intent to stay inside and try to catch the least of it.
With any luck, the boat is off the Oregon coast this morning. No ETA yet on its arrival in Ilwaco.
Tuesday, April 21, 2009
Lady Washington is still en route from Eureka, Calif. and we don't have an ETA yet. We're planning a formal "grand arrival" for both boats, but the exact day and time depends on LW, weather conditions, and so on. Stay tuned.
Good Afternoon Ladies and Gentlemen,
This morning we checked out from vessel traffic San Francisco for the last time till the fall. At 0900 we rounded Point Arenas to much rejoicing of the crew. Another hour later we rolled onto chart 18620, that's right folks, Point Arenas to Cape Medicino. Which will be the last of our California charts. We are currently 39'28.69N 124'01.72W, which is just north of Point Cabrillo, average speed this afternoon has been 4.5 kts, a blazing speed that we had not seen since passing the potato patch leaving San Francisco. We are trying to stay inshore around the 3 mile line, to catch a counter current and move faster. We instill a fervor into the crew by telling them the Hawaiin Chieftain crew is eating banana splits in Eureka. This sets them into a mind-numbing concentration to produce every bit of speed outta of Lady. Tonight the wind and sea's are forecasted to build up with a small craft advisory off Cape Medicino thru tomorrow. But that is still ahead of us and is not daunting the crew.
Today's we spotted five albatrosses flying along side, and little cocktail dolphins swimming up by the bow.
Thank you folks,
Mate on Lady Washington
Saturday, April 18, 2009
As of 1200 Saturday, we are in Brookings Oregon, and have taken on approximately 440 gallons of fuel. Our voyage north has been characterized by two separate gales with winds gusting to 40+ knots. These storms slowed us down to as low as 2.5 knots headway, but never quite stopped us. At 0400 this morning, we were facing 12-foot seas and 30 knot winds, and veteran crew members were turning green. Worse, our starboard oil alarm was going off in time with the seas. The captain made the decision to go into Brookings for fuel and to top off oil. The oil was not as low as one might have thought. The alarm had more to do with the seas than with the oil level. Weather north of us looks good and only getting better, and we plan to be underway again within a few hours.
Dear Les and Joe,
As of 1000 Saturday the 18th of April, we are taking on roughly 400 gallons of fuel in Bodega Bay. In 36 hours, we traveled a total of 44 nautical miles north, mostly in a proper small craft advisory, or a small gale, with 10-foot seas, gusts to 35 kts. Most of the crew began to look green, and lost their cookies. Friday night was looking just as bad as Thursday, and in the true spirit of seamanship, right when the crew started feeling better, we told them we were heading in. After checking fuel numbers, decided to come in for fuel.
Shortly after sunset, a heavy fog began to roll in as we made our approach to Bodega Bay. The sky cleared up as we came south of Bodega Head, but the wind was still howling fierce. The Coast Guard at Bodega advised us to anchor out in the bay and make an approach on the harbor in the morning. We bent on and readied the port bower in the dark of night, and dropped one shot of chain and one of road. Held strong thru the night with 30 knot winds. At 0630 this morning, we began to heave short and had the anchor at the water by 0715. With the sun up and fog only giving us 20 to 50 feet visiblitly, we made our approach on the channel. From dead center you were vaguely able to make out the breakwaters on either side. With a dilligent bow watch calling out makers we made it safely into the inner harbor, where by chance it is clear.
So we are taking on fuel, restowing much that has been knocked loose, and intend on getting back underway before noon this day. Intend to stay inshore as much as possible. Right now we are tracking some weather south of Cape Medicino, and South of Cape Blanco, which is another state to worry about completely.
We are all safe, no injuries, and the ship is sound, crew in good spirits.
Thank you gentlemen,
More voyage reports as they come in.
Thursday, April 16, 2009
Hawaiian Chieftain checking out. Underway from Oakland at 2200 on Wednesday April 15th, 2009. Bound for Ilwaco, hopefully no stops in between. Looking forward to seeing y'all soon. We'll try to check in on at least a daily basis as cell coverage allows.
Lots of love,
We'll post the emails as the boats progress up the coast.
Monday, April 13, 2009
Filmmaker Boyd Marts posted this footage showing a topman's-eye view of climbing the rigging of Lady Washington after a Battle Sail in Newport, Ore. He wanted to show to the average person what our "Tours Aloft" activity is like. Tours Aloft allows guests with no tall ship experience to climb the rigging at dockside or while the ships are underway for three-hour sailings. You're strapped into a harness and a fixed belay system and invited to climb as high as you like, up to 70 feet off the water. It's proving to be very popular. The next opportunity for Tours Aloft is in Ilwaco April 23.
Boyd is also helping us out during our Columbia River trip April 23 to June 25. At several stops, he'll be recording stories about Lady Washington as told by former crew, guests, and others. It's part of our celebration of 20 years of changing people's lives. For our complete Columbia River schedule, visit our website: http://www.historicalseaport.org.
Wednesday, April 8, 2009
When I worked as the city historian for Santa Barbara, CA my husband and I were having a drink at the Santa Barbara Yacht Club at the waterfront one lovely afternoon about six years ago. Suddenly all the old salts in the bar (significantly not the new sailors) got up and were pointing out the windows with agitation. We looked out and saw the Lady Washington coming into the harbor and she was magnificent!
The SB harbor is small and cannot accommodate all arrivals such as Paul Allen's behemoth vessel. But the smallness of the harbor makes it more intimate when witnessing eye catching nautical events such as the LW. She was in SB for some sort of Richard Henry Dana commemoration since one of the chapters in Two Years Before the Mast describes 1830s SB in great detail and is well known to all local residents. Our view of her from the Yacht Club windows was perfect and we thought that someday we would like to take a voyage on her. Of course, when you have the time for such adventures, you don't have the money, and vice versa. So we have never been closer to the LW than that day in the SB harbor.
What a great memory of Lady Washington! If you have a story to share, send it to email@example.com. We'd love to see your photos, too.
Sunday, April 5, 2009
Wednesday, April 1, 2009
More than 300,000 people attended the festival on the Foss Waterway in Tacoma last July. The festival generated more than $20 million in economic impact to the local area and left a $2 million legacy of permanent improvements in the Foss Waterway for all to enjoy.
Les will give his talk again at a second showing of the video April 8, again at the Galaxy Theatre. Copies of the DVD are also available for purchase at both showings for $15.