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EpiLog: Wednesday, November 3rd, 2010

0600 hours

Current Position: Underway on Long Island Sound, south of Port Chester.
Latitude: 40˚ 09.5' N
Longitude: 073˚ 06.4' W

The second (and concluding) day of our transit voyage from East Hartford, CT to Verplanck, NY.

0800 hours

When dawn breaks, we discover that we've made incredible progress overnight. At yesterday's sunset, we were just leaving the Connecticut River. As the sun rises this morning, we've already reached the western end of Long Island Sound.

1000 hours

By mid-morning, we've already passed the Throgs Neck and Bronx-Whitestone Bridges, the site of our anchorage almost exactly one month ago.

1015 hours

Ahead, Hells Gate and New York City lie clearly in view. Once we navigate around these small islands, known collectively as the Brothers, we'll make our approach.

1030 hours

The good weather is holding, with bright, nearly cloudless skies and relatively warm temperatures.

Our timing is excellent; we've arrived at the Hells Gate Bridge right at the ebb tide, when the fierce currents will be in our favor. That means we can continue straight through without setting anchor to wait, and may mean that we make the entire journey in a single, continuous leg.

Our lookout gains some company as crew cluster on the fore deck to take in the sights.

1045 hours

Beyond the infamously turbulent Hells Gate (thus the name) lies the East River and Manhattan.

Mouse over to ride the currents!
The Half Moon rolls along on the turbluent East River.

These churning waters mark the roughest seas we've experienced since entering the Connecticut River!

Riding on these roiling waters, the Half Moon reaches an overland speed of 10 knots. (Were we trying to move against the current, we would barely be making any headway whatsoever.)

1100 hours

As we zip along and complete our transit of the East River, we take in famous NYC sights such as the Chrysler Building, the Brooklyn Bridge, and of course, the United Nations.

1200 hours

Current Position: Setting Sail in Upper New York Harbor.
Latitude: 40˚ 39.1' N
Longitude: 074˚ 01.9' W

Once through the East River, we head out into New York Harbor. We could just hug the shoreline of Manhattan and continue straight up the Hudson River, but it seems a shame to go through an entire voyage without setting sail. As we switch through the watch rotations, our rig teams have already climbed aloft to unfurl the courses.

Pauli and Ralf brace the fore course to the wind as we prepare to set the sails.

We set the fore course first and cut the engine. The winds are southerly but light, so we'll just have to see how long we can continue under sail.

Alexander Sharpe is dispatched to the main top to help set the main foresail.

1230 hours

Mr. Dangerousli, Mr. Hensel, and Ms. Waiboer help our new crew "learn the ropes."

With such an unexpectedly short transit time, this will certainly be our only opportunity for sail handling, so we all make the most of it.

1315 hours

We enjoy a lunch of pulled pork sandwiches and macaroni & cheese as we continue underway.

1330 hours

The fore course and main topsail are still drawing nicely...

...so we turn north, back toward New York City and the Hudson.

John S. Majdan eagerly takes in the view during his hour at helm.

1345 hours

We pass a few more notable landmarks as we reach the mouth of the Hudson River.

1445 hours

There's plenty of sightseeing to be had as we head up the Hudson River, past the west side of Manhattan.

Those crew who've seen these sights a few times keep themselves busy discussing ship's duties and line assignments for our arrival tonight.

1530 hours

David Pudlin looks relaxed during his hour at helm.

Meanwhile, in order to maintain our speed, we've switched to "motor-sailing," using the ship's engine to supplement the speed and steerage provided by the sails under light wind conditions.

1630 hours

The winds have continued to die down, and Captain Reynolds is eager to step up our pace, so the command comes down to douse the sails. We'll continue from here under engine power alone.

Our mast teams quickly put the sails in their gear.

1700 hours

Eduard van Breen seems to be enjoying himself as he takes over at the helm.

1715 hours

With the George Washington Bridge fading into the background, we've left New York City behind.

We're done with the sails for the day for the year, in fact! so Anita Waiboer and Ralf Hensel go aloft to furl them for the winter.

1800 hours

Current Position: Underway between Yonkers and the Palisades.
Latitude: 40˚ 57.2' N
Longitude: 073˚ 54.0' W

Steve McLaughlin and his galley assistants serve lasagna for dinner as we continue upriver toward the Tappan Zee Bridge.

As the sun sets behind the Palisades, we're making sure that everyone gets their chance at the helm. Pauli offers John Montague some instruction as the latter takes over at the whipstaff.

1945 hours

Once night falls, the crew retreats to the light and warmth of the castle decks or the orlop, where they spend their time relaxing.

We're nearly to our destination now. Under the cover of night, the Half Moon passes under the Tappan Zee Bridge and continues north across the full length of Haverstraw Bay.

2100 hours

And just like that, a mere 39 hours after leaving the Goodwin Dock, we've reached our final destination: our long-time host at King Marine, in Verplanck, NY.

2000 hours

As we approach the dock, Mr. Hensel and Ms. Waiboer step ashore to handle our dock lines.

Ending Position: Docked at King Marine in Verplanck, NY.
Latitude: 41˚ 15.2' N
Longitude: 073˚ 58.0' W

The Half Moon is soon secure outside the the King Marine dock. Technically, this marks the successful end of our voyage, but in fact, we aren't quite done yet. The crew will remain onboard another night, rising well before the dawn to begin the task of winterizing the ship.

Next Time: Season's End!

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