Sunday, September 27, 2009

The Boating Season is Over

The boating season is winding down in Northern Michigan and is over for us. Tomorrow the boat will be pulled from the water, winterized and moved to a barn for storage until next year. You know the season is winding down as we were the only boat in the Canadian Soo. On the way down we stopped at Lime Island again and were the only boat there. We then went over to Bob Lo Island and there were four other boats in the marina, but no one was on any of them.

And then on Wednesday we went to Mackinac Island and for the first time ever we were the only boat there. Another cruiser did come in later that afternoon.

We just experienced our best month of weather all summer. It would have been perfect, but for our last day on the water. Thursday we rode over to St. Ignace from Mackinac Island in T-shirts, on the flybridge in flat calm seas. Friday morning we woke up to 20-25 knot winds and a wind chill of 42. The winds were down to 15 for our ride back to Mackinaw City, but it still wasn’t a pleasant ride.

We hope that you all have had a wonderful summer and have enjoyed riding with us. We have certainly enjoyed it and having you along. We will let you know when we get back to the Keys, but that might be a while as we are going to explore a bit on the way back in the motorhome.
Hey what is happening to our Steelers? Loosing two in a row both in the last minute? Everyone needs to get on board and start sending nothing but good vibes our way. Go Steelers!!!

Take care, Love,

Linda, Jake and the Fat Man

Thursday, September 17, 2009

The Kohuts in the Canadian Wilds, eh.

Sault Ste Marie, Ontario, Canada

The Canadian Wilds might be a bit of a stretch as we are in the Canadian Soo, one of the largest cities in northern Ontario. We crossed over this Tuesday after our company left. The marina is closed so we are here by ourselves with no power or water. The good thing is the docks are free. That helps to pay for some of the great dinners we are having at the many of the Soo's fantastic restaurants.

Our stretch of good weather continues at almost three weeks of warm sunshine and fair seas. That might end tonight as a cold front moves through. It has already begun to cloud up and the temperatures are dropping into the 30’s tonight. We got a nice bike ride in today in t-shirts, probably our last one of the season.

Karl Lund and Juanita Fanto were guest aboard the boat last week.

We picked them up in Mackinaw City where we watched the Steelers give us all heart failure in their overtime victory over the Tennessee Titans. Friday we started cruising and visited Mackinac Island and a round island bike ride, and Hessel, where we spent the night. Saturday we took a cruise through the Les Cheneaux Islands and up the St. Mary’s river to Lime Island.

Lime Island is unique as it is the first place that we have stayed all summer that didn’t have a restaurant. In fact it doesn’t have much of anything as it is an abandoned fueling station for freighters in days gone by. We were the only boat on at the island and we could let Jake run free and swim. Needless to say, Jake calls it heaven.

Sunday we had to go back down the River to Detour to pump out as our holding tank went full during the night. We decided to take advantage of the restaurants and had breakfast in town. Afterwards it was back to Lime Island and a hike to the lime kilns, from which the island was originally named. Again we were the only boat and Jake got to run free and swim. That afternoon we were off to the American Soo where we celebrated Karl’s 59th birthday at the world famous Antlers Bar. The marina in the Soo is right next to the locks. All of the big freighters going into or coming out of Lake Superior pass within a hundred yards of the boat.

One of the neat things to watch is the supply ship Ojibway pulling along side a freighter and hoisting up the ships stores.

We have another week out on the water before we start to head back to the barn. We hope that you all have had a great week. Go Steelers!!!

Take care, Love,

Linda, Jake and the Fat Man

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

The Kohuts, Tween in Mackinac City

Greetings to all,

We are now between company in Mackinaw City.
Yesterday Dr. Ed left and tomorrow Karl Lund and Juanita Fanto arrive. We also have a new record of ten straight days of wonderful weather. It looks like it is going to stay nice all the way through this weekend.

Steve and Paula’s timing was a little off and they had to endure the worst weather we had all summer. It was cold, raining and blowing a gale.
We ended up sitting in Charlevoix until Monday when the weather turned. We were able to get a quick cruise down to Elk Rapids. It was still cold, but sunny and smooth. Tuesday, the day they were leaving it started to warm up into the 70’s.

Steve and Paula enjoy their only warm day aboard the Blue Chip.

Ed Gordon arrived the same day and he says that he brought the good weather. Who can argue? He spent a week on the boat and we had the best week of weather of the whole summer. We crossed over to Beaver Island on Wednesday with flat calm conditions and warm temperatures. Even Jake didn’t mind it too much. On Beaver Island we were able to bike and enjoy our favorite restaurant, The Beaver Island Lodge. After a few days on Beaver we moved back to the Straits for the busy Labor Day weekend and got the last slip open in St. Ignace. Again it was flat calm and warm.
We could easily get used to this type of cruising. Sunday, a couple of docks opened on Mackinac Island, so we went over there for the rest of the weekend. Mike was able to get his bike repaired (it wouldn’t shift gears) and we had another delightful ride around the island.

Dr. Ed and Mike biking on Beaver Island.

Ed’s week was up yesterday and we came over to Mack City so he could drive home. We spent today shopping and getting ready for our next adventure, which will be running up the St. Mary’s River to Sault Ste Marie with Karl and Juanita. They will be aboard until Monday. We are hoping the good weather will hold out for another couple of weeks, so that we can do a little cruising in the North Channel of Canada. We are scheduled to pull the boat on September 28th.

We hope that you all have had a great week and you are ready for the big football game tomorrow. Go Steelers!!!

Take care, Love,

Linda, Jake and the Fat Man

While we were in Charlevoix, the Linda Lu arrived. At 198 feet it is the largest boat to ever dock at a Michigan State recreational dock. Mike told Linda he ordered it for her, but it was supposed to be named the Linda Q, so he wasn't going to take it. The Blue Chip is in the center in the foreground.