Saturday, June 30, 2012

When the bow is in the trees...

Listening to "Bump & Sway" by Deep Banana Blackout

The other day a wise man said to us, "When the bow is in the trees, you're running out of seas".  Well...

looking towards the marina slips from Paragon's bow

Have we taken a wrong turn?  Perhaps zigged when we should have zagged?  No, we have simply, in our infinite wisdom and good timing, chosen to be hauled out in the hottest part of the year.  *sigh*

This has been a delightful summer thus far, with temperatures hovering in the mid-seventies to low eighties, cool breezes in abundance, and nights that require a light hoodie.  No longer.  The thermometer will be pushing 100˚F/38˚C this weekend with a heat watch advisory from the weather service.  (hey!  look at that heat!)

Fortunately for us the cruising community is an amazing group of people.  A cruiser stopped by earlier today and lent us a window air conditioning unit to use while we are on the hard.


Thank you, thank you, a million times thank you.  Thanks to this kind gentleman, I am now writing to you from the chilled confines of the boat.  

Getting hauled out was certainly an adventure.  Doubly so since we not only removed Paragon from the water, but stepped the mast as well.  No longer are we the slowest, saddest little trawler in the marina....we're a SAILBOAT once again!

We maneuvered into the working slip at Sailcraft Boatyard, tied off, and began preparations.

Paragon in the Sailcraft slip
We did a final examination of the mast, secured the rigging, then prepared to move her.  I'm not sure how I thought we would move this massive structure from point A (on the grass) to point B (by the boat), but I was certain it would involve all sorts of high tech procedures and equipment.  Nope.  Instead we loaded it onto this little trolley and rolled it right on over to the crane.  Space age technology, I tell you...

bracing the mast on the rolling cart

Of course, every bit of our work was carefully observed by the official quality control and safety expert, Bo.  He is Mark the rigger's dog, and is always ready to offer an ear...that is, if you're willing to scratch.

Quality control overseen by Bo
Wires were tied and, lo and behold, the mast was lifted.

I seriously hope this holds!

After some minor adjustments, the mast was set down...

Stepping the mast
 And voila.  Shrouds and Stays were attached (these are cables that run from the mast to various points on the deck and keep the mast from pulling a Humpty Dumpty and tumbling down), and some light tuning was done.

Next, Paragon was hauled out and the hull was blasted by a pressure washer to get over two years of crud off.  Much to our *happy* surprise, the bottom was mainly free of barnacles and other vermin...that means less scraping for yours truly.  *grin*

The power washing begins

Paragon is rather massive when seen from this angle
The last time Paragon had her hull scrubbed was just before Drake sailed from Sint Maarten to Oriental in 2010.  You can check out that voyage below.

So here we are...sitting on the hard and forming our plan of attack.  There is much work to be done, but since it is mosty toasty outside I believe we will sit back, enjoy the cool air conditioning, and perhaps share a toast to the newly restored mast. 



  1. Boat seems to be in pretty faie shape. Didnt you use to have a 32? when did u move to a 42?

    1. Drake did have a Westsail 32, but moved up to the 42 about 6 years ago.