Planning for a cruise usually begins months (or even years) in advance. This winter, we are planning to spend a couple of months cruising The Bahamas with our 31′ trimaran Thunderstruck. Our winter is a great time to dream about slicing through turquoise waters and soaking up the warmth of the tropics.
So it’s Groundhog Day in North America and our various weather-predicting rodents here in Canada seem to be divided as to whether there will be an early Spring. First out of the gate was Nova Scotia’s Shubenacadie Sam. Sam apparently saw his shadow which means at least 6 more weeks of winter! Bummer for you Atlantic Canadians.
But, both Fred La Marmotte in Quebec and Wiarton Willie here in Ontario failed to see their shadows…a harbinger of an early Spring! Who to believe? This “Upper Canadian” is going to go with Fred and Willie’s call. Hopefully they are correct. 🤞
In the past couple of months we’ve been slowly preparing for a trip over to The Bahamas. We were waiting for my Teaching semester to be over (it is!!) and for one essential part to come in in order to fix our jib furler (picking it up tomorrow!). Another part for our water maker is also on its way. So once these parts are installed, we can start packing the boat.
Jim also tried to fix an issue with one of our main sheet blocks. We have a 12:1 purchase on our main because there is no winch to grind the sail in. One of the blocks has a sticky ratchet so Jim tried to loosen it in various ways…no dice. You’ll see it and some of the main sheet (the red line used to pull in the sail) in a pot on the stove in the pictures below. It’s not a real safety issue or anything so no worries.
My jack of all trades even felt the need to sew up a cockpit cushion one day! Impressive! This led to the rather rapid construction of what I refer to as his “Man Bag” though he seems to think it is a tote. We also sewed up a filler to go between the Dodger (shade cover with windows at the front of the cockpit) and the Bimini (shade cover at the rear of the cockpit). The filler is also blue Sunbrella outdoor fabric and will be used when we are at anchor or at a dock.
I decided to license our inflatable dinghy with the Canadian government so that we are legal in Florida! We’ve heard that they can be sticky on boat registrations in that state. So I printed our official numbers and drew them onto the dinghy with a sharpie! So easy.
Other things we have to prepare are lists and copies of important documents as well as an inventory of what we have aboard.
It feels like a lot of work sometimes but over the years, getting ready for a cruise has actually gotten easier. If you are going for two weeks or for two months, the prep is just about the same.
Stay warm everyone!