First Shakedown Cruise

Cruising To The West River (continued)

Jerome's Honda EU2000i generator running on the side deck. We tried it for the first time, today.  

Since the generator is powered by a built-in four-cycle engine, the first task was to fill the engine's crankcase with oil; then, fill the gas tank with fresh fuel. Next, we placed the generator on the side deck where the exhaust fumes would blow clear of the boat, then ran the AC wire (that we fabricated the other day) from the generator's AC outlet to the boat's shore power receptacle.

Jerome already had used a similar generator, so with only a brief refresher from the manual, he yanked the starter cord and the generator sputtered to life. It's an amazing piece of equipment, very quiet even running at full power. Furthermore, it even has a special "super quiet" mode to make it even quieter when full power isn't required. On deck or below, the noise was not at all objectionable. Believe me, that's spectacular performance—I once used a Coleman Powermate generator on my boat and it was noisy enough to wake the dead five miles away.

With the generator running and connected, we went below to check the shore power charger. We found it to be running just fine, drawing the proper amount of power from the generator, and recharging the boat's battery bank.

After we ran the generator for a while, the weather cleared but we still didn't have any wind to speak of. Since it wasn't a good day to play with the boat out on the bay, Jerome decided to motor over to Hartge Yacht Yard, a marina and boatyard on the West River in Galesville, to see if they had a rigging part for Pilgrim and to talk to his friend Dick Zimmerman, a boat broker. Hartge's is well known on the bay and has been owned and operated by the Hartge family since 1865, with the fourth generation of the family now working there.

We raised the anchor and motored over to the West River, at one point passing a large fish trap that seemed to be an all-you-can-eat buffet for the resident ospreys and cormorants. When we reached the marina, all the alongside dockage was in use, so we tied up to the fuel dock for a few minutes so Jerome could make a quick visit to the brokerage. We couldn't really stay on the fuel dock, so we motored back to a small cove near the Steamboat Landing Restaurant and anchored. Jerome launched the dinghy and attached the outboard motor, then we dinghied back to Hartge's and tied up at the dinghy dock.

Unfortunately, the ship's store didn't have the correct size for the rigging part, but we made the most of our shore visit by walking into town to get some exercise. On the way to the business district (small as it is), we passed through a quiet residential neighborhood that I thought was quite charming. The houses were well maintained, the lawns green and trimmed, with mature trees and attractive flower gardens—a very pleasant slice of small-town America. Galesville has managed to preserve its small-town charm, unlike many other small towns that have been ruined by vast housing developments and numerous shopping centers.

When we got to the West River Market (a store that sells homemade pies, according to Jerome), we found it closed, but we went into another nearby market instead. This store turned out to have an extensive selection of wine, plus a few other convenience items, hot coffee, and free wi-fi for customers. The salesman was knowledgeable and persuasive, and since Jerome consumes wine with every meal, he wound up buying a bottle.

While Jerome was selecting wine, I walked over to the waterfront to look around. There were a few restaurants overlooking the water, including one at Pirate's Cove Marina. Next to the marina, there was a small park with a sizable public dock. I checked out the dock to see if we could land the dinghy, but decided it would be somewhat difficult since it would be a big step up from the dinghy to the dock. I could see Pilgrim at anchor in the cove, but I had neglected to bring my camera so I don't have any pictures.

On our dinghy ride back to the boat, we cruised past the docks at Hartge's and saw many fine old boats, as well as modern boats. Later, back aboard Pilgrim, we saw numerous sailboats out on the West River, participating in the popular Wednesday night races.

The story continues on the next page.

Looking east towards Chesapeake Bay as we motored from the Rhode River to the West River. Click on the picture to see a bigger version; use your browser's "back" command to return here.  

Click on the picture to launch Google Maps and display an annotated map of the West River, showing where we anchored and some nearby points of interest. Use your browser's "back" command to return here.   Click on the picture to display a chart for the West River. (94 kb) Use your browser's "back" command to return here.

Internet Links For This Section

Previous Page   Next Page   Contents Page   Sailboat Cruising Page   Home Page