Day 1 Mackinaw City MI to Beaver Island MI

We have a at least a dozen practice runs of entering a slip; so let’s start the loop!

Day one- Our plan is to fuel up at the marina next door, then throw off the bow lines and head west toward Wisconsin.   First stop, a night at the Municipal Marina on Beaver Island.    The charts indicate we will head 20 miles west of the Mackinaw Bridge, then south through a channel marked by several Buoys before heading west again to Beaver Island.  Total of 40 miles- piece of cake.

2016 import phone dave's i phone 5.21.16 077

Mackinaw Bridge

Planning ahead- Colleen called the Beaver Island Marina to confirm availability of a slip – the harbormaster response “Sure, we have open slips, and are you aware of the storm heading in to the area?”.   Not to sound irresponsible, Colleen responded-yes we have checked the weather; and will be there about 3:00.    A check of the weather had shown slight chance of storm of in the evening, 10 knot east wind.

  1. The trip all in all went as scheduled.  The stern seas (refers to the wind at our back – blowing toward our stern) can cause a bathtub effect as it pushes the boat along, but not uncomfortable.   The stern seas were building all day.  We met a few trawlers and waved and took photos of each other- with a sense of adventure we realized we have 5000 miles to travel over the next 365 days before we cross this wake again.

We didn’t realize how much the waves had grown until we turned into the wind. Things got  a bit more exciting when we turned south, and proceeded through the channel.  Now the East wind is hitting us broadside and causing the boat to really rock and roll.   What a great test of our interior furnishings-  it is an eye-opener to enter the cabin to see the fridge tipped over, the table on its side and broken dishes from a bad latch on one cabinet door.     Added a few items to our “to do list” today!

Flawless approach into the slip at the Beaver Island Municipal Marina; tied up and settled minutes before the rain started and the clouds began darkening.    Good timing, and glad to be in a safe harbor as the NOAH radio began warning of small craft advisory for area.

We had a list of firsts today-

  1. first stop at the fuel dock (98 gallons of diesel) ,
  2. first run with auto pilot (very active in a stern sea)
  3. first time for Colleen at the helm (awesome job by the way).

Words of the Day:

  • Apprehension
  • Achievement
  • Adrenalin
  • Amazing


Today was a another shakedown cruise; we added a few reminders to our list:

  1. Do not charge the phone by the compass (it will throw off the bearing)
  2. Install Brackets to hold the refrigerator (or it tends to tip over in beam seas)
  3. Carry spare toilet parts (no explanation necessary)
  4. Check and double check cabinet door latches (Yes, Corelle is breakable)



Captain’s Log:

Weather Observation:   Clear Sky; East Wind 15 to 20; gust to 25 mph.

Departed: Mackinaw City,MI  10:30 am

Arrived:   Beaver Island MI 3:30 PM

Travel Time:   5 hours

Average Speed:  8 Knots

Miles covered today: __40.9

Accumulated  loop miles :  40.9




About mnsailors

Our blog will highlight our travels along America's Great Loop. We sold our sailboat on Lake Superior for a Trawler to do America's Great Loop in 2016.
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One Response to Day 1 Mackinaw City MI to Beaver Island MI

  1. Al &Deb Wray says:

    Congratulations on the start of The Great Adventure! We’ll be following you along the way online, and then hopefully in real time as we head south in the fall ( via the RV road instead of the River Road!) Take care… safe journey!)


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