-By James Openshaw.
On possibly the last cruise of the 2015 sailing season, Fantasea sailed with a crew of Blair and Julie Anessi, Dave Chappell, Joanna Nicol, Dave Wilson, and Jim Openshaw. The cruise doubled as a check ride for Dave Chappell who performed admirably well. Fantasea pulled away from the dock at 2:00 to bright sunshine, calm seas, and a very light wind. The crew spotted a submarine and a nearby anchored coal carrier. Near the bridge, there was a close pass of a container ship and another sailboat and a tug passed nearby.
The light south breeze allowed Fantasea to clear the bridge as the predicted 4:00 winds clocked around to a strong NW direction. The potluck hors d’oeuvres and dinner treats provided energy for the crew to rig a double reef in the main and jib for the 15-20 kt winds and stronger gusts. There was a beautiful sunset and the almost-full moon poked thru the clouds most of the time, shining a moonbeam directly to Fantasea. The crew sailed further NE, encountered a surprising amount of crab pots and flags in deep water, advanced toward the Magothy River, then turned south for the return leg on a broad reach at 6 knots. Somewhere south of the bridge, the crew took down the sails and headed to the mid pair of white floats, up Crab Alley, and through Whitehall Bay in the darkness. At the dock, the crew put Fantasea to bed knowing each enjoyed a wonderful time on the Bay.