Heading out east
across the top of Saginaw Bay, we had blue skies, calm waters, and the
temperature was in the low 90’s. It was looking like yet another great
cruising day. An hour later we neared the top of the ‘thumb’ of
Michigan at the C1 green buoy off the shore of Port Austin.
We were running
at 28.5mph in less than one foot rollers, and could see the
lighthouse and some small fishing boat traffic. Gina was reading
her book during a comfortable ride.
At 12:15 we
rounded the green G1 buoy off of the Pte Aux Barques light and
started the trek south along the western coast of Lake Huron. The
lake flattened out even more so I throttle up another mph in the
slightly following sea. We were now catching up to a few other
boats and I happened to hear their radio traffic on channel 78.
They were contemplating on stopping at Harbor Beach or Sanilac,
but decided (often like we ourselves do) to keep going when the
lake is so nice, and head for Lexington.
later we passed Harbor Beach, making out the large stack and
breakwall in the distance. Lime Cutter called on the VHF, running
about 25 miles ahead of us near Port Sanilac. We soon overtook the
group of three cruisers near Wankes Reef, and the lake was still
flat. Port Sanilac came into view at 1:30, along with
several fishing and speed boats.
About 12 miles
out from Lexington, Lime Cutter called back and said they were all
tied up at the dock and had reserved a slip for us. At 2:05 we
entered the Lexington Harbor, and pulled into slip #33. The
tripometer read 728 miles. After we were all secure, I walked to
the Harbor Master Office to register, where I met the crews from
the three boats we passed earlier.
We all chatted
about how nice the lake was today. One of them is actually from
our home port, on the way home from a two week vacation. They ran
all the way from Presque Isle today.
Passing Port Austin
Later we walked
into town with Jim and Jana from Lime Cutter, where we stopped for
lunch at Smackwater Jack’s Gourmet Restaurant & Deli. Known
for its fine sandwiches, pizza, and bread, it is connected to
Aroma’s Coffee House, which offers fine coffee specialty drinks,
cigars, and a large selection of Great Lakes related books. After
splitting a Reuben sandwich, we walked down the block a ways to
Gina’s favorite Lexington store, Weekends.
This truly is one of our all-time favorite ports.
Dinghy Out For
we decided to go for a dinghy ride, heading out through the
breakwater entrance and over to the south beach. We anchored
in two feet of water and cooled of with a swim under the
intense summer day heat. The lake was dead calm, with the
exception of wake from boats entering the harbor.
miles off in the distance we could make out numerous
sailboats stalled in the light breezes. Today was the start
of the Port Huron to Mackinac race, and with little wind,
the boats were ever so slowly making their way north. Two
years ago today we were coming back from a vacation up north
and we also encountered the start of this race. It was a
beautiful sight with all their colorful sails up.
took the dinghy over to the north public beach area, which
was jam-packed with people today. After floating around and
watching the people and sailboats for a while longer, we
made it back to the marina.
after dinner Gina made from leftovers of chicken sausage,
and fresh potatoes, we walked back into town, where Mitch
Ryder was playing at the local small theater. We joined Jim
and Jana for a beer before returning to the boat for the
The stars were starting to
glitter now in the night sky, and there were no bugs out at
all as we sat on the docks. For desert and to celebrate our
last night on this wonderful trip, I enjoyed one of those
fancy chocolate truffles that we picked up in East Tawas.
I followed that up with a
small glass of Grand Marnier, and a fine cigar. It doesn’t
get much better than this. Tomorrow we head home.
Lexington State Docks