Wednesday, July 10, 2019

Sodus serendipity

We are under way westbound in Lake Ontario, bound for Rochester, New York. The lake is nearly flat calm and we are having a lovely cruise in pleasant weather.

We spent four full nights in Sodus Bay. Ordinarily we would not have stayed so long, but you may recall we came in a full day early to beat some nasty weather on the lake, and we needed to be in town all day Monday and into Tuesday to have the dinghy outboard worked on.

Vector at anchor in Sodus Bay, as seen past the Junior Sailing Association docks.

We were very glad we arrived a day early, because it allowed us to have a very nice prime rib dinner at the Sodus Bay Yacht Club, whose dining room is open only on Friday and Saturday. While we were there for dinner, we talked to the club manager about possibly tying Vector up at their docks Monday. This would let me get back aboard after dropping the tender for service without having to find a ride or set up the kayak to paddle back.

The storm drains are below lake level now. Pumps like this all over town struggle to send the lake back where it belongs.

Even though many of their docks are under water, they had space along the bulkhead, which had been outfitted with temporary fender boards to allow boats to fender off the dock -- when a dock is submergerd or awash there is otherwise no way to get a fender between the boat and the dock, making the dock unusable no matter how little water is over it. We've seen these temporary fender board structures all over the lake.

Sodus Bay Yacht Club clubhouse.

Sunday evening we returned ashore by tender and walked up the hill to The Bay Street restaurant for a surprisingly nice dinner. The restaurant features New Orleans cuisine in a white tablecloth setting, and was the most well-rated restaurant in town. Monday morning we hip-tied the dinghy, weighed anchor, and sidled up to the dock at the yacht club (map) very, very slowly.

The most popular, if poorly rated, joint in town. I heard he'd get you by tonight. We passed.

The fender boards were quite sturdy, but the inertia of 110,000 lbs moving too fast could easily have ripped them right off the dock. Complicating matters were the fact that weeds within a foot or two of the surface meant using the thruster only sparingly, if at all, and that the dock had some short vertical 4" pipes with caps in lieu of any sort of cleats or bollards. It was a very calm morning and we had no trouble. Louise took a couple of wraps on the pipe bollards to keep the lines from slipping up past the pipe caps.

Vector secured at SBYC. Note the fender boards, pipe bollards (only the first one has a reducer, the others have caps) and awash power pedestals.

I was surprised to find the power pedestals working. Not only were the bases in an inch of water, but all of the conduit supplying the entire marina is submerged. Nevertheless the power was on, and we plugged in so we wouldn't have to run the generator right outside the clubhouse.

Because the lake is above street level in places, it's forcing its way in through the ground. Here you can see it bubbling up between the street and sidewalk. Green slime is everywhere.

As soon as we were tied up, and before even connecting the power, I zipped across to Arney's Marina to drop off the tender; they pulled it out of the water on a trailer and backed it into the shop, then gave me a lift back to the yacht club. I was back aboard by 9:30am. I spent part of the day just walking around town and taking in the sights; lots and lots of yards and docks are under water, and the town is full of pumps endlessly trying to put the lake back where it belongs.

These boats at Arney's are actually "on the hard" on stands.

Yesterday morning Arney's called to say the tender was ready and back in the water. I walked the mile and a half to go pick it up, and when I got back to Vector we could easily have hoisted it and gotten back under way. However, the yacht club has a deal for visiting members of reciprocal clubs that provides the second night free, and we took them up on it. The first night was just $30, plus another $10 for power. Also, our reservation in Rochester was not until tonight.

Sodus Bay jetty light, with the public beach behind, on our way out this morning.

We had a nice dinner in town at Marlin's waterfront restaurant, then strolled out to the point and back. It was really a very pleasant four nights in Sodus Point, even though I expected to find little there at all. This morning we dropped lines after morning coffee; we just now passed the R.E. Ginna nuclear plant, and should be docked in Rochester by 2pm.

1 comment:

  1. I hope you have some great weather over the next few days. We’ve been making our way down the East side of Michigan and the weather has been just stunning. Today we are in East Tawas and moving to Port Austin tomorrow.

    Quick update on my recommendation to stay in Presque Isle. They were replacing the underground fuel tanks there and had no fuel service. Possibly till the beginning of August. Diesel fuel in Tawas and Port Austin is presently $3.00 a gallon.

    It was $3.05 in Cheboygan.

    The restaurant in Presque Isle is also closed; we were told it was due to the owners death. The state is in the process of bidding out the contract for its concession. They hope to have a restaurant by next summer.

    ThePortage store across the street has good homemade pizza and also will make sandwiches.

    Have you contracted a line handler for the Welland Canal? Vessels transiting from Ontario to Erie are required to have three.


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