Friday, August 17, 2012

Warning Fumbled

Vergennes, VT
44 10.17 N 073 15.48 W

Today we cruised up Otter Creek once again.  (It's one of the best places we know.)  This time I was fully vigilant.  I steered us right along the track of the deepest water I know, and diligently avoided the shallow spaces I know.  The depth alarm didn't buzz even once, despite the fact that the water level is a few inches lower than before.

As we approached the place where we ran aground last time I slowed to dead slow.   But then I spotted another sailboat coming down the creek.   I slowed even more so as to not pass him at the narrow spot.  He kept coming and to my horror he hugged his right side.   He was heading right for that rock.

I looked and saw a Canadian flag and a French name on his boat.   Should I call him on the VHF to give warning?   I hesitated because of the languate barrier.   Well, the hesitation was too long.  BANG I heard as his boat hit that rock.  I was 150 feet away and the bang sounded plenty loud to me.   His boat jerked, but then it bounced off the rock without getting stuck.

We both continued on our way.  Me feeling guilty about my failure to give warning, and him probably feeling chagrined and embarrassed and worried about the soundness of his hull.

To assuage my conscience, when we go down the creek next time, I'll throw out an empty gallon jug tied to a rock as a warning buoy for that spot.

1 comment:

  1. You could have just sounded the danger signal.

    Bill Kelleher


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