2018-06-29 — Sylvan Beach, Phoenix, Oswego NY

Sorry about the delay but internet has been a little short here in Canada. None the less we left off crossing Lake Oneida on a lovely day to make the passage. It was nice to get in some open water for a change1


This was one of my favorite water front house of the day..plenty of entertainment room and neat as a pin!


This is the split where we depart the Erie Canal and join the Oswego Canal for our trip up to Lake Ontario.


We see many sailboats configured like this so they can transit the Canals with the low bridges. This could have been an option for us aboard Magnolia-S this is just not for us. Mast over hanging bot ends of the boat. Hell we have enough trouble with a bow thruster and nothing over hanging!!!


Our friend Jim encouraged us to stop at Phoenix NY. It initially did not hit our “radar” and had an anchorage picked out. We sure are glad we did stop after all!


It had some history…


Some terrific old buildings……


I almost forgot….ice cream


And best of all, do you see Magnolia there on the dock? Do you see what is in front? A Laundromat…never in our days of cruising have we had this convenience! For icing on the cake, literally this was a bakery RIGHT net door to the laundry. Never in our wildest dreams have we ever found true cruiser heaven……


The waterfront dock area was just terrific with much interaction with the locals. I even met a man named Chuck Connors…he could have passed for the Rifleman I swear.


The next morning we departed heaven and passed through some more of the Oswego Canal Locks.







Lock 8 was the last of the Oswego Locks….we are somewhere around 30 locks so far on this trip and there is like 45 more coming up in Canada….


Oswego struck as a nice urban area..


:Lots of older brick buildings which I really appreciate.


We tied up a wall at the mouth of the harbor which is administered by the local Best Western Hotel….its weird, you go into the front deck and register…weird. We did not get out too much, most got Magnolia ready for a little “blue-water” passage. I needed to raise the mast and make sure everything was good and secure. The afternoon we arrived and it was very windy and the lake was very churned up so did not know what to expect…


Getting underway early the next morning…well you can see that we picked the perfect window as the lake was calm as we could have asked for and Magnolia seemed to enjoy the 30 something miles of oen water and boy we sure did too….


Well this story will continue in Canada….so see you next post!


2018-06-22 Canajoharie, Little Falls, Sylvan Beach NY (Locks E-12—>E-22)(267ft->420ft->395ft)(Mile 39-124)

As we traveled further west though spartan in-between, would come across these little downs along the water front.





Though we did not get to visit, this is the Shrine of Out Lady of Martyrs is a shrine to 7 Jesuit Priests who were massacred by the Mohawks in 1646.




The town of Cana-ja-harie was an amazing little find. We had never heard of it, it had one of the best art museums around AND it was home to Beech-Nut founded here in 1891…who would of thunk?


We toured the art museum that is co-located with the Library. Amazingly it contained a number of works by Homer, Remington and a number of other notables.


Since we had not had good walk in a couple days we walked a little ways out of town to a gorge we had read about.


We did not walk the whole park but what we saw a really cool and a great fine (https://seeswim.com/location/canajoharie-gorge/)


Another little nugget was the Van Alstyne Homestead. Sadly it closed the day we were there but it was in this tavern that locals debated the coming revolution..


Pretty amazing to think about…


Back aboard it was experiment time. Years ago I made pizza on the grill when we lived in Crystal CIty…later then on Magnolia-S I would make break over a charcoal grill. After giving up the charcoal had not tried any grill baking in some time. Perhaps it time to get back to my roots….yes Kathy L, I know!



Moving on we arrived at Sylvan Beach. As soon as we arrived it felt like we arrived at any number of ocean front beach communities…only on a bit smaller scale. We were also a little short on salt-air too!


Sylvan Beach is located on the Eastern Shore of Lake Onieda


I suspect and hope we run across these kind of towns as we travel the great lakes. It was Tuesday which was Bike at the Beach Day…it was a pretty wide age group and seemed rather upscale. Many of the bikes were custom one of a kind affairs.


The NY State Police even came to display their bikes….perhaps just a reminder this is a quiet beach town.


Being a beach town there was one thing we knew for sure….there was going to be Ice Cream!! We settled on a little place back off the main drag a few feet. The ice cream served was indigenous to the region so we scored.


I settled on a little chocolate peanut butter Sunday..I think the young lady enjoyed the whip cream application process!




We have to say that we appreciate the Active Captain write up that Lab Partners did, the town did not disappoint.


Early the next morning Magnolia was off on the 21 mile passage down like Oneida…


It was nice navigating open water and not a lock to be seen for a few hours!

2018-06-20 Troy–Amsterdam, NY (Locks Troy Federal to E-11) (2.4 ft–>267.0 ft) (Mile 0–39)

After saying goodbye to our friends Al & Michele Magnolia headed on up the Hudson river. The beauty of the upper Hudson river really is beautiful.


We planned for a long day on passage from Kingston, NY to Waterford, NY. As we approached Albany the waterfront became much more industrial (less attractive) than we had become accustomed.


Out first of MANY MANY locks was the Troy Federal Lock.


The end of our day was planned for Waterford NY just a couple miles further past the Troy Federal Lock. The first thing we learned is Loopers have no mooring discipline. Use as much dock space as you want and to hell with those that arrive later…yes I am ready to catch shit but it is true…this is only the FIRST example. We arrived late, but another boat arrived even later. We moved Magnolia even closer to the barge behind us to get another boat in front. A wind shift eventually brought that barge even closer…a little disconcerting!!!


We took a couple day break at Waterford. It was an ideal town with a barber named Chainsaw Chuck whom I was way over due to visit.





Though this is now just a spillway, this was the original canal minus the lock gates from the 1860s!



Since we have never been in the New York Canal System we took a walk up and looked at Lock #2. The firs 5 locks you MUST go through without stopping.  The are all with in 2 1/4 miles but combined raise you up 184 ft! That’s a pretty steep incline for 2 miles!!!


None the less first thing next morning we entered lock #2 and the adventure began! This is what the inside of most all the locks look like.


Beside most of the locks is a damn that allows a certain amount of water to by-pass the lock. There seems to be a fair number of hydro-electric damns too



Typical canal shore…





There are a number of free and inexpensive places to tie up along the canal. This is sunset in Amsterdam NY.


This is a standard building by each of the locks. They seem to be old industrial buildings like there was a turbine in there at some point.


We are starting to find our stride and having a wonderful trip…couple more days and we will be settle in!!!

2018-06-18 Kingston, NY

As we traveled up the Hudson River we noted a number of lighthouses along the way. Their design reminded me a lot of what we see on the Delaware Bay. Here is some more info on Hudson River Lights


This lighthouse marks the entrance to Kingston, NY.


More accurate it marks the entrance to Rondout Creek.


We traveled nearly 4 miles up the creek to really as far as we could before dropping anchor.


See we could go no further because we ran into a dam. (We knew it was there) but it did provide a unique anchorage with the sound of rater in the background.

We launched the dinks and went exploring.


Okay, maybe too many waterfall pictures…sorry


Heading back down river to the anchorage.


Did I mention there were only two things at this anchorage….a waterfall and a dairy bar? Are we good or what…yes Sally is was all pre-planned and meticulously researched….



It is all about crew moral!!


A picture of Magnolia and Kindred Spirit in the anchorage.


We dinghy’d all the way back down river to the town of Kingston, NY. Kingston has a very interesting and varied history. There is a maritime museum that we really enjoyed.


Before we knew the time we were able to share with Kindred Spirit came to an end. Magnolia will continue north while Al & Michele head home for a family holiday. I snapped the below picture as we were preparing to get underway, looing forward you can see the bridge towards the falls and in the monitor the view behind Magnolia, just as striking. That’s how I want to remember the week when we are all old and gray and are friends are gathered and telling stories…


We wave farewell for now to Kindred Spirit in the early morning….


Someday I am going to figure out how to get all our friends in the same place at the same time….now that is a dream…be safe A**2

2018-06-17 Poughkeepsie, NY (Glass Barge, Hyde Park, CIA )

As we travelled up the Hudson River towards Poughkeepsie was fascinated by how deep the river remained. There is a heck of a current on that river and that deep….man that is A LOT of water!!!


The crews of Kindred Spirit and Magnolia had big plans during our visit but first Annette had to pull a branch out of the water that was near Magnolia….HUH? Turn your back for a moment…she was not please this stick was near her boat……

Anyway, first up was the Corning Glass Barge. It is a traveling barge where they  are doing glass blowing demonstrations.


It was a lot more fun than it might sound…but it did appeal to my geek side…


After that cultural event we were ready to move on the the food sciences…actually a pretty regular segment in our travels but Kindred Spirit upped the “science” side by order flights of beer for for a true comparison test….

The Admiral went off the brewery reservation and ordered some kind of exotic drink…..


Next up and my personal priority was a visit to Hyde Park and the Roosevelt Estate located there. 


We did not tour this visit but this is the Franklin Roosevelt Presidential Library. The first Presidential library. We did not tour this visit but want a full day the next time.


Michele is listening in on Franklin and Eleanor discussions….could you ever imagine? A government actually wanting to makes its citizens lives better…how nostalgic….


The estate was named Springwood and was home to Franklins parents before he. Franklin was born in this home as well.


As you can tell we have had a great photo influence from our companions on Kindred Spirit, much better on getting the good group shot!

Us at SPringwood

Franklins backyard growing up…he sailed single handedly on the Hudson river at 9 years old!


This is where Franklin and Eleanor are both buried.


After all that morning sight seeing it was time for lunch….not to worry, I also had French toast.


The next high priority stop was the Culinary Institute of America also known as CIA!


The campus of CIA is a former Jesuit novitate St. Andrew-on-Hudson established in 1903. The campus is absolutely breath taking and we believe they should open a school of lansscaping inaddition to the culinary arts!


We had signed up for a morning tour which was conducted by a very knowledgeable student.


While we were waiting, we waited in the cmpus coffee shop…..this day is going to end badly…..


After the tour we had lunch reservations at the CIA restaurant Ristorante Caterina de’ Medici


I generally do not have wine in the middle of the day but just had to make an exception for this experience….

My appetizer with with the above mentioned wine was to die for!


A stroll through the ground was just what the CIA ordered!


A Hibiscus in NY?


A Hudson River Sturgeon made out of knives, forks and spoons…..


2018-06-13 Cronton & Cold Spring NY

As we headed up the river, near the upper west side of Manhattan we found this monster anchored…I was particularly impressed by the garage door in the side of the boat. I guess it made it easy tp get things moved up the NYC apartment to the boat….that moving aboard day can be a real challenge…..


The Hudson quickly greened up along the shoreline. 


The Tapanzee bridge has been under construction seemingly forever…here you can see the old bridge being disassembled. 



Out first stop and was Cronton NY.


Because of the complicated anchorage near the Statue Of Liberty we had not gotten together so we all enjoyed a terrific dinner and lots of catch-up!!


The Cronton Damn turned out to a really amazing treat. It is the 3rd largest cut stone structure in the world…behind the Great Wall Of China and some Egyptian Pyramid!!


It was one of the original water supplies for NYC!



Caitlin, work hard and apply yourself…I look forward to seeing your damn someday!!!


After all our sightseeing there was but one thing to do……


Departing Croton we headed north passing West Point Military Academy.


I did get a chuckle when I saw the Army’s one sailboat….not thinking much of a threat to Annapolis


We dropped the hook in Foundry Cove at Cold Springs, NY


First up was a small boat chore. Al “volunteered” to help install some snaps onto the new pilothouse covers.



Magnolia at anchor with cockpit sun cover in place.


We went ashore to Cold Springs and registered at the municipal dock. You are asked the reason for your visit…one choice was ice cream…they have our number!!




The memorial to fallen solders from the county….



General Store

And we have a winner…on to Hyde Park!!

moo moo interior

2018-06-12–Great Kills–Statue Of Liberty–(Vacation Like Photo Warning)

There might be a “few” to many NYC photos for most tastes so consider yourself warned in advance! Magnolia departed Maryland and made a direct transit to Great Kills NY to be ready to meet up with Kindred Spirit arriving from CT when the weather settled. As you can see, Kindred Spirit is making their way down Long Island Sound. This gave us a couple days to kill…so we fell back to our prime main stays…food and boat chores.


We found the local waterfront Italian Place across the street. It seemed Great Kills has a large Italian population so we spent a great weekday night sitting at the bar, eating and drinking our night away. Time and money well spent!


It did not take us long to find Frank & Sals Italian Market for ingredients for our favorite “mopping” dinner, clams & lots of sauce with some really hardy bread…the white wine goes without saying!


On the chore side of the house I finished cleaning and painting the aft part of the engine room and got the port side forward done.



“Red sky at night, sailors’ delight. Red sky at morning, sailors take warning.” Rest assured this was the morning and the beginning of 48 hours of really crappy weather. Cold wet and windy hence the above mentioned clam sauce. It was the perfect medicine for the occasion.


Picture does not do a lot of justice, it was a rocking good time for sure.


As the weather cleared, Kindred Spirit got underway from Port Washington and would be transiting the East River. I wanted to get a picture of them coming under the Brooklyn Bridge on the East River


This is Magnolia enroute for the “Money Shot.” Transiting Buttermilk Channel with the Verrazano Bridge in the back ground.

Magnolia among ferries

Light Blue is Magnolia’s track up Buttermilk, behind Governors Island from Great Kills


Success! Kindred Spirit transiting the Brooklyn Bridge. Note Empire State Building in background


Kindred Spirit in front of lower Manhattan


Magnolia heading south in Buttermilk Channel toward Statue Of Liberty

Magnolia by Brooklyn Bridge 2

Magnolia lower Manhattan

Magnolia and The Big Apple 1

Magnolia anchored behind Statue Of Liberty

Magnolia at anchor

Ellis Island in foreground and Manhattan approaching sunset


Not her best side but anchored so close was amazing…


Annette took this after I went to bed…


After one more round of pictures, we both headed up the Hudson River…


Magnolia Liberty 5

More to come!!!!

2018-05-31 Galesville, MD — Great Kills, Staten Island, NY

We finished up our chores and visits in Galesville and boy did it feel good to be underway again! We did have some stops before heading north, first of which was a tank top up. Did not REALLY need fuel but did want to test out this fuel fill baffle device. I will tell you it worked like a champ (Clean Way Fuel)!


Magnolia crossed the Chesapeake Bay, went up the Choptank River (think Mitchners Chesapeake), up Broad Creek and then up San Domingo Creek…yes really. Not only is this a lovely anchorage but it also offers super easy access to St Michaels, MD.


The Pentagon Sailing Club was coming here for Memorial Day but before their arrival had the place to ourselves.


The geese were in full training mode for the young ones.


Had a complete test for the new grill and mount…thanks Rip!


Morning radio nets were made easy by fine weather and good radio conditions.


We made time to get ashore and enjoy a soft shell sandwich in St Mikes…there was of course Ice Cream!


On Saturday the first PSC Boat to arrive was Bootlegger who won a bottle of wine for there accomplishment!


Sunday we made the short trip to Brewers Marina Oxxford where there was much socializing and an evening dinner.




Memorial Day Monday Magnolia was up and off early on passage to Rockhall, MD where we were to meet up with MV Arion.


Arion is our sister-ship and Al & Arlene have been hugely helpful during the transition! Al & Arleen had looked at “AmyK” (Magnolia) before we purchased her and we were excited to share our restoration efforts. We had a wonderful dinner aboard Arion and a fun time catching up.


Tuesday first thing we were up an underway and headed north…at that time we were really not sure how far we were going. We were tryign to decide if this was “our” weather window or we were waiting till later in the week. As we headed up the bay, Annette was checking with out weather router and decided we would go today…”go” meant we were headed straight for Great Kills NY, about a 230 mile passage.


Of course we had the fog to contend with first.


Luckily we have a pretty good radar and as long as you stay away from the “blobs” all is good!


We transited the Chesapeake & Delaware Canal about mid day.


We headed down Delaware Bay passing nearby Brandywine Light.


There is a shortcut canal that goes through Cape May. In the past we were not able to transit it because of our sailboat mast.


We approached the canal just about sunset, not the red and green marks at the approach.


The early part of the canal was quite picturesque which the light of the setting sun.


Upon departing Cape May we made an overnight passage up the New Jersey coast arriving in Great Kills, NY in the early afternoon.


It was a GREAT start to our summer cruise. The next few days will find us taking care of some boat chores. We will also be shopping at my new favorite store Frank and Sal Italian Market. Tonight’s dinner was clams and pasta with a healthy dose of bread for mopping…I am in cooking heaven. For now though, “vessel and crew are well” and we are wishing the same for you.

2018-05-25–Hook Catch Up

Its was only 20 days ago that we arrived in Galesville, MD. our “home-port” as home as we get anyway.  We had been away nearly a year but it still definitely felt like home!


Our visit was shorter than normal this year so we got right to work. We had Marine Techincal Services of Deale, MD install SmartPlug connectors on Magnolia. Annette had previously made cable covers for our new shore power cables. They also troubleshot a problem we were having with the Inverter. There are few contractors I can give a Magnolia 5 star rating but they are always there when they say they will, do great work at a reasonable cost…my five cents.


We had many people to catch up with. First off the bat was part of our “freshman” class of 2013. SV Eleanor Q and SV Mandala! We cut our teeth together. Good to be together again.


Under the category of freshman these two are just beginning their time aboard but are already surpassing anything we did! They purchased SV Remedy in the Caribbean and are literally in process of bringing here home to the Chesapeake. As I write this, they are departing Turks & Cacaos heading for “home.”


Another MD based crew John & Lizzy we had not seen since Stuart FL. While we were getting Magnolia ready they were busy getting their new Cabo Rico 56 broken in. (and it is BEAUTIFUL) . It was great to share an evening catching up and swapping trip north stories!


Our friend Jim from SV Kismet was left to his devices while his wife made a shore based trip.  He singlehanded Kismet down to the West River where we shared a wonderful dinner and evening together!


Always a treat in Annapolis this time of the year, the Navy’s Blue Angels come to town for the Academy’s Graduation. We were guests aboard SV Exuberant where we a terrific view of the show, a great lunch and got a run-down on their Great Lakes experiences. More on that in a minute.



I grill a LOT and was not happy with my last one. On the recommendation of Rip on MV Lab Partners I invested in this beauty. Its an O-Grill with a European heritage. So much so that the first time looked at the temperature gauge and it only showed about  250…scratched my head untill I realized it was 250C which is about 500F! I am in love!


We also received our Chelsea Clock back from service. It was good to hear the bells again. It really sets the rhythm aboard Magnolia


A trip home is NEVER complete without seeing my pal and his family. Those two ladies are the only ones I held as babies and now looking forward to the first wedding. Still unbelievable to me!!


A spring golf cart trip is always a welcome afternoon.


We were short on time this year to see everyone and so opened Magnolia on a Sunday afternoon. I so much enjoyed catching up with friends I completely forgot the camera. We did get a snap of dinner with some of my cousins (Go GenIV)!


Another visit we really enjoyed was our friends from SV Journey. Journey was a boat we met on our freshmen year and always very impressed with their vision of their future. They were thinking about the same things we were but they were 15 years younger! We had a lovely evening aboard Magnolia catching up and sharing first world problems. Thank you for making time on a stormy weather night!

We got underway yesterday to start our summer adventure. I am writing from the Choptank River which was the setting for Mitchners Chesapeake. It is every bit beautiful as depicted and a great place to “hide-out” for a holiday weekend. Remember its Memorial Day and the reason for this holiday. “Memorial Day is an American holiday, observed on the last Monday of May, honoring the men and women who died while serving in the U.S. military. … Originally known as Decoration Day, it originated in the years following the Civil War and became an official federal holiday in 1971.”


Note: I get so confused about privacy and what information to share on here whether its pictures or names etc. I have always highly protected names of minors and trying to have respect for information. If there is ever something on here that makes you feel uncomfortable, CONTACT ME and I will IMMEDIATELY make ANY edit to make you feel comfortable.

2018-04-29—Getting North

Departing Southport and St James the first traffic we came to was a super sized cargo ship arriving into the Cape Fear River.


We made a long day trip from Southport to Camp Lejeune where we anchored for the night. We made and early arrival to Swansboro to visit with Annette’s cousin.


From Swansboro it was onto Campbell Creek and a visit with MV Lab Partners and SV Braveheart.  We had a terrific couple of days gabbing with Mike, Kathy, Beth & Rip.


The morning of departure from Campbell Creek gave us a wonderful sunrise with a slight foggy mist…always afforded a beautiful gift.


100 miles to Portsmouth, VA


We generally avoid car traffic but yet there is the occasional car ferry!


We are having a problem with our Northern Light Generator so made a stop into Atlantic Yacht Basin to have that resolved. One of the tasks we had planned for our time in the Norfolk area was to get these kids out of storage.


Being moored at AYB affords us a clear view of the Intercostal Waterway and all the various boats and barges that transit this section of the waterway. This portion of the waterway bypasses the notorious Cape Hatteras so I assume that is why there is so much barge traffic.


The upside of delay was a family visit with my sister, her daughter and new baby hanging out ready to get on with her nap!!


Even as sun is setting the big barges are still moving….


Even before arriving back in Galesville for our spring visit we are planning our next adventure. The next adventure is our version of the “Loop.” We will depart directly from the Pentagon Sailing Club event in Oxxford MD heading west on the Erie Canal to Rochester, NY, north across Lake Ontario through the Canadian Trent Severn Canal system.  We will make a brief visit to Georgian Bay heading though the straights of Mackinac to a visit with my folks in Ludington, a visit with a very old friend in Wisconsin returning back east via Detroit and Sandusky, OH. As with any new water we travel there is a certain level anxiety but the accompanying excitement far out weighs. We try and do our homework to be as prepared as we can. Most of all we are excited that for some of the way we will travel with a friends boat and then further on in the trip visiting places and seeing friends and family and having them visit our home. Going to be an exciting summer that is for sure!!!


Tragic Wake Up Call: I finished this blog a couple of days ago and had yet to get it published. Yesterday we were on our from Hampton, VA to Reedville looking forward to meeting up with some friends we had not crossed paths with in a couple of years. Approaching Reedville Annette heard a PAN-PAN from a boat a couple miles behind us. As the woman related to the Coast Guard ; she and her husband were returning to their home dock have a cruise to NC. It appeared the woman had medical experience and related that her husband had a heart attack and after CPR etc had no signs of life. After the relevant information had been exchanged we called her and offered any assistance she may need. She declined and was focused on getting to their dock in Reedville where appropriate help was waiting. It was a tragedy for sure and reminder to us, you never know the time, so live like it could be soon….btw, the man that passed was 55 years old.