Petoskey Rocks…

I took a day off due to an injury and hope you all missed me. I apologize in advance for the disjointed photos in this blog entry but I was just not focused yesterday.

We dropped our lines in Mackinac Island at 0630 on Wednesday morning and headed out into the Mackinac Straights and under the world’s longest suspension bridge and into Lake Michigan.

It was a perfect day, sun shining and water almost calm. The waves could not have been more than one foot and created a pleasant ride. We were in a shipping lane for a good portion of the day so a constant radar vigil was kept to prevent one of those big boys from running up behind us. There was only ship that passed and it was head on. I know many of you think I exaggerate about these freighters and the danger but the same day one of these 1000 foot behemoths ran aground in the St. Mary’s River and still today has the entire river blocked to all traffic. We came down the same stretch of river from Sault Ste. Marie to De Tour last week.

I spoke to the Commander about these ships and he said because the locks limit the beam to less than 110 feet that they just kept making them longer by hundreds of feet and making them unwieldy to operate. Sort of like riding on a telephone pole and trying to keep it from rolling, and some of the turns they have to make are very tight with skinny water on both sides. So you see why we give them wide berth. They are supposed to be limited to 10mph on the river but I caught several exceeding this by nearly 4 mph. Our AIS system will give us a GPS speed over ground for them via satellite.

 We spoke to Seabatical by VHF as we entered Little Traverse Bay. They were moving on but we were headed to Petoskey to take shelter from expected storms due on Thursday and Friday. 

In Petoskey we took on 168 gallons of fuel at $4.10 per gallon. This was the first fuel since Killarney and we still had nearly a half tank. We cannot complain about our fuel economy.

Petoskey is another state run dock that is located in a sheltered bay and has has everything a boater could want. A West Marine a block away. A beautiful downtown that is clean as a pin and filled with restaurants and shops. And bless Pat, a Walmart three miles away. We have not been there yet but we will as we are staying here three nights to let the weather settle.

On Thursday I took on several projects that I have been wanting to deal with and never had access to the supplies I would need.

I silenced a rattle in the forward AC unit. I rearranged the storage in the bilge, I relocated an automatic float switch for the mid ship bilge pumps and best of all I finally added an hour meter to the generator so we will know exactly how long between oil changes rather than guessing and trying to keep notes. It is hard to believe this generator came without one and has never had one installed before this. I should have done this before we left but just ran out of time. Pretty nice work don’t you think? Looks factory as my old friend Kip Claxton used to say. 

There is a festival here this weekend with all sorts of activity. But with the rain we are having I am not sure how much will go as planned.

Now, I said I was injured and will not keep you in suspense any longer. When we docked here I was pulling that heavy electrical cord out when something pulled loose from my ribcage. A pulled muscle I suppose. It was painful and is limiting my ability to maneuver and work. I am taking Tylenol and after 24 hours it seems to have improved a bit but every time I hiccup it is like a knife.

We finally come down to the Petoskey Rocks which is what makes this area geologically unique. It is the glacially formed rocks that line this bay and are found only in this area. They are a compressed rock containing fossilized coral which is revealed when wet or polished and looks like a tortoise shell or a sea creatures skin. I am going to try and find some for my friend Lizabeth to add to her collection and that of the Georgia Mineral Society.