Friday, July 27, 2018

Seeing the Light

First, the Handy Links:

  • See more photos from our adventures in anchoring.
  • Check our location with Boat Finder. (Enter Bill's handle, kd3fly-12, in "Track call sign")
  • "Like" and "Follow" SlowBoat on FB to keep those pictures coming in your feed!

Dragonfly with other boats at anchor off Valcour Island
We anchored out off Valcour Island to enjoy the incredible mountain scenery of Lake Champlain.

Next morning, as we were wrapping up boat chores, a couple pulled up in a little dinghy.

Peter and Claudia live on the shore. They saw us putter by and were curious about our oddball boat, found our blog online, and came out and say hi.

"Seek Local Knowledge"

That's one of our mottos. (Ssecond only to "We have a plan and we're not sticking to it.") Usually when we're in a new place, we head for the nearest pub and spread our charts on the bar--putting out bait that attracts local sailors who know the waters. 
It's big, it has a red roof, it's high on a cliff so sailors can see the light. How did we miss it?

But sometimes local knowledge comes to us! Having explored the lake intensely in their own boat, Peter and Claudia had loads of tips. One was, be sure to see the lighthouse in the next bay. Lighthouse?  What lighthouse? We cruised all around the island before dropping anchor and completely missed it!

The Brotherhood of the Boaters

One thing we've found heartwarming both on this trip and on our Great Loop trip is how boaters look out for one another.  People you have only just met will offer you charts, a helping hand, or the keys to their car.

Our visitors are docents for the Bluff Point Lighthouse. They promptly volunteered to take us over in their dinghy and show us around, even though it wasn't an official "lighthouse open for tours" day.

Wow!  We love lighthouses.  This one is particularly charming to look at. It was built in 1870 overlooking the site where Benedict Arnold's ships did battle with the British in 1776.

It has an interesting history (which you can read here) that includes a female lighthouse keeper. It was lovingly restored and relighted not long ago by members of the Clinton County Historical Society

Thanks, Peter and Claudia, for a memorable outing!

Brotherhood of the Boaters, Part II

While I'm on the topic of The Brotherhood of the Boaters! The night before, as we were entering a different anchorage in Pellot's Bay, we passed a striking boat, a steel-hulled trawler that looked like a working fishing boat.

A good-looking boat right down to the bright-red dinghy!
We love big steel boats. So we admired its graceful lines, a little wistfully.

Our boat is such a conversation starter, we're constantly giving tours. But that seems to mean we rarely get to see OTHER people's boats!

The Evening Promenade

Speaking of boater customs, around cocktail hour in an anchorage, folks tend to get in their dinghies and go visiting. This evening, the folks who came to say hi were Flavio and Laura--owners of the trawler!

They joined us on board and we had a wide-ranging fun conversation. Flavio and Laura also know the lake inside out recommended some good anchorages.

Next thing we knew, we'd been invited back the next morning for espresso and croissants on the trawler. Laura and Flavio, thanks so much for the treat, and for the tour of your awesome boat!
Dragonfly (see her roof at right?) was excited to meet another steel-hulled boat. 


  1. Bill & Cynthia
    We just noticed your posting.
    We really did enjoyed meeting, you are really great people and admired also your unique boat in Lake Champlain.
    We want to keep in touch and offer you free Espresso & Croissants on Land in the Old Montreal.

    1. Hi Flavio and Laura! Thanks so much for the treat of breakfast and seeing your beautiful boat--a favorite memory of this trip. Yes, let's keep in touch . . . we would love to see you next time we are in Montreal!

  2. Bill & Cinthia
    It was great to meet you on Dragonfly in Pellot's Bay and have breakfast (Espresso & Croissants) on SV OCF the following morning.
    Keep in touch and let us know where you will winterise Dragonfly (Lake Champlain or Chesapeake Bay)