Tuesday, December 06, 2011


Marathon, Florida
24 42.40 081 N 05.68 W

I didn't fool anybody with yesterday's mystery object.  It is a clamp-on sculling oar lock.  Here's the story.

Last summer I wrote a blog post telling how vandals had stolen our dinghy and broke on of the oars.  I had to get a tow back to Tarwathie because, of course, I couldn't row back with one oar.  My friend Dave read that and he said, "I'll have to teach you how to scull your boat."

Well, Dave and his wife Johnnie met us in Vero for lunch and Dave gave me that oar lock as a present.  It is just what I need to convert our dinghy to a scull propelled boat.  Dave also gave me a few pointers on how to scull using a rocking motion with my wrist to hold it at the right angle for the fore and return strokes.

Well, I tried it.  Wow, it is much harder than I expected to scull effectively.   It will take some serious practice to learn to do it well.   Boot Key Harbor is a good place to practice that, but only when the stiff winds stop blowing.

I recall smirking at a few guests and relatives who discovered to their amazement that rowing with two oars is not trivially easy as they thought.  Now it's my turn.  Part of what I need to learn is the proper fulcrum point along the length of the oar.   Hopefully, before leaving Marathon I'll be a competent sculler, and so will Libby.

Thank you Dave.

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