The biggest job has been building our wooden mast cradle. Since the New York State Canals have bridges as low as 15 ½ feet high, we have to remove our 62 foot mast and lay it on deck. The wooden mast cradle is the structure that will support our mast from the Oswego Marina in Oswego, New York all the way through the Oswego Canal and then the Erie Canal. The mast will finally be re-stepped in the Catskills, about a third of the way down the Hudson River.
Mike’s design for the wooden mast cradle has three purposes:
1. Be simple to install when the mast is taken down in Oswego. We want to be able to easily set up the cradle when we get to Oswego.
2. Limit the disruption to us moving about the boat. This is important for comfort and safety. We need to be able to move about the deck without stubbing toes or banging heads. We also want our full cockpit enclosure to remain intact in case we run into some snotty weather.
3. Be extremely stable. This last point is the most critical. We want the mast to stay put in its cradle regardless of waves, weather or turbulence in the locks.
Oh, and provisioning. We have been stocking up on some of our favourite or “must have” items, mostly just to make our first few weeks less stressful. Although stores are available all along our route, we won’t have a car so doing a big grocery run will be more work than normal. Of course, all this provisioning means that we have to find places to store everything. Our cupboards and cabins are already filled with our everyday stuff so where does the extra stuff go? Under the floorboards of course!
Only a few weeks left until our planned departure date of Sept 10!
Victoria is a hiker, dog-lover, blog writer and planner extraordinaire. Oh, yeah and she is kind of fond of living on a boat.