I wasn’t sure if the title of my post would be offensive to some people (I know wax-lovers are out there 😉) but we are into truth-telling here at Sailing Wild Horses so you are getting the goods as they are delivered.
But before we can get to waxing and our other fringe season boat tasks, the boat had to get hauled out of the water. This happened the afternoon of Tuesday October 13th, right after Thanksgiving weekend. The weather was perfect – sunny, light winds – but we really were passengers for the event. At Loyalist Cove Marina, there are lots of experienced dockhands. They know what to do, when to do it and why they are doing. Oh, and they do it with a smile, lots of jokes and by singing an occasional boy band song from the nineties. For us, a normally tense experience was actually (dare I say it) fun.
We got to the boat a few hours earlier than our scheduled haul out time in order to ready the boat. The big thing is to remove any standing or running rigging that would prevent Wild Horses from fitting into the travel lift. Just to note for non-sailors: “standing rigging” are all those stainless steel wires or “stays” that support the mast. Wild Horses has one forestay, four side stays and two back stays.
In contrast “running rigging” are all the ropes attached to the mast and sails that allow you to sail. But, please, don’t call them ropes to a sailor! They actually have the worst sail language names – not terribly intuitive or easy to remember. They are halyards (the ropes that hoist a sail), sheets (the ropes that control a sail) and a whole bunch of other special function stuff like “vangs”, “lifts” and “outhauls”. In a bucket though, yes, they are all ropes!
For the travel lift, we had to remove our two back stays and our “topping lift” (holds up the boom when you are not sailing). We also had to strip Wild Horses bare of anything that could get moved or wrecked while in transit. That meant that the cockpit enclosure, and the bimini and dodger canvases had to be removed and stored.
Then came haul out! The dockhands easily moved Wild Horses into the lifting well using her dock lines.
Wild Horses was lifted by the travel lift and onto her cradle, which sat in a transport truck.
The truck moved Wild Horses and her cradle into her winter spot. Beautiful!
Now that Wild Horses is settled into her home for the winter, we have begun the work of prepping for winter. So far, we have finished lots of cleaning of cushions, canvas, and all drawers, compartments and bilges. Oh, yeah, and that nasty waxing work. Finally, it is done. Mike cleaned and waxed the hull, stern and cockpit – those big areas that can be done with a power waxer. I did all the fussy bits on the decks i.e. around the standing rigging, the hatches, the topside of the anchor locker etc. It is a slow and painful process to cover 47 feet of boat. But it is a necessary chore so that Wild Horses’ gelcoat is protected from water and UV damage. Plus, she looks pretty darn good when she is all cleaned up and glossy! Perhaps I just need to start singing a boy band song while I wax. It works for the dockhands at Loyalist Cove Marina!
Victoria is a hiker, dog-lover, blog writer and planner extraordinaire. Oh, yeah and she is kind of fond of living on a boat.