Captains Log – August 13 2016 – Isles of Shoales to Sandwich via Cape Cod

Stardate 94218.72

Air Temp:  19c
Water Temp:  67.2F
Wind:  9km E
Pressure:  101.3 kPa rising
Clear Skies
Departed Isle of Shoals at 8:50am


How to take a dog ashore while traveling by boat… or not.


I woke up super early today ready for our next adventure. Everyone was still asleep, so brought Mini to shore at Isle of Shoals before taking a quick tour around the bay looking through the window in the bottom of our new inflatable kayak. IMG_9327The water is crystal clear in the bay here.

The kids were still asleep, as they seem to be staying up later every night, IMG_9331

IMG_9333 so I did a short jog around star island to look at the monuments and solar array. IMG_9330A bunch of kids staying at the resort got up early to catch the sun rise and were hanging out at the breakwater on the eastern shore, singing an array of pop songs along with the theme song to Little Mermaid. Pretty entertaining! There were some baby sea gulls not able to fly yet on the rocks.

Today was a long trek of about 88nm. IMG_9338We made a stop at the north end of Cape Cod and anchored just off the shore. (About 65nm south of isle of shoals). 20160813_120526The water was quite warm at 76 degrees, but the kids weren’t interested in swimming, so I unloaded the kayak to take the dog ashore. CapeCodDogStop1We got there no problem… 20160813_151548the dog wanted to play so we did for a few minutes.CapeCodDogStop2


Trying to get back to the boat proved to be a challenge. First, the dog didn’t want to leave, because she loves the beach and second the waves were quite large which made it hard to get past them with both the dog and I in the kayak.CapeCodDogStop3

It felt like that scene in Castaway where he is trying to get off the island on his raft, I was Tom Hanks and Mini-Wheat was Wilson.

We were waiting for just the right moment to make it over the break. I had to time it just right: Grab the dog, throw her into the kayak, run into the water far enough that I could paddle, but not so far that I couldn’t get into the boat without flooding it, jump in and paddle out past the first breaking waves…


After a roll over on the first attempt Wilson ran ashore to play in the sand some more,


while I gathered up the yardsale spread all over the beach. CapeCodDogStop6First I had to wring out the towel that was in the bottom of the kayak and dump out all the sand and water that had gathered in the bottom of the boat. Then I had to straighten out the GoPro that was dragged along the bottom of the ocean. Next I had to convince the dog that it was a good idea to get back in the kayak for another attempt at freedom…CapeCodDogStop7

She thought it was a great game running away every time I went to pick her up.

(TL note:  or she was afraid you’d flip her out of a kayak again)

Finally I got a hold of her and got everything lined up for our second attempt.

This time around I decided to tow the kayak back with the dog on it while I swam. CapeCodDogStop7

CapeCodDogStop8That got us out over the breakers fairly easily. Swimming while holding the line wasn’t very efficient so I took a few seconds to tie it to my ankle with a bowline knot.CapeCodDogStop9 By the time I did that, the current had already started pulling me down the shoreline away from the boat.

So I started swimming. CapeCodDogStop10

CapeCodDogStop11The current was at less than half a knot against me, so I was making headway once I started swimming.

Meanwhile back in the boat, I think TL was panicking a bit that I would be swept away. CapeCodDogStop14Kylie had the great idea to attach the ski rope to the boat and she would come out to me, (with a life jacket on and tied to the line), to help pull us back in. Kylie said she was a little worried about sharks, but she jumped in to save us anyway! Brave girl!CapeCodDogStop10

The dog was worried I was going to swim away without here and was standing out on the nose of the kayak beside the GoPro!


It only took 4-5 minutes to swim close enough to the boat to reach the line.



When I was about ten feet away from Kylie I did my best Tom Hanks impression from Cast Away. “Wilson!”

We were never in any real danger, but it’s good to know that they can come up with a plan when needed! Yay family!

(TL note:  so, the kids and I are watching from the boat the whole spectacle of Mini-Wheat trying to get Doug to play with her, running away every time he tried to pick her up.  Then we saw the initial crash when they attempted to get over the wave break.  When Doug started out the second time, swimming with Mini on the kayak I thought ‘crap… Stay in the boat Mini.’

When Doug stopped to tie the line to his ankle, we didn’t know that’s what he was doing.  From our vantage point it appeared he was having trouble making headway.  Yep… I panicked.  

So after Kylie was geared up, (we even tied an extra line from the ski handle to the life jack so even if she lost grip on it, I still had her hooked to the boat.)

We released her, but the ski rope was not long enough.  So I ran up to the foredeck, got one of the spring lines, attached it to the ski rope end, then to the cleat and let the ski rope go out the additional length.  It was still short.

We then watched.  Waited.  Hoped Douglas could swim to her.  By now I could see he was making headway.  Phew weren’t going o be the headline news. 

Soon he was holding onto the rope too and Ryanna and I pulled them in.) end of TL note.

Back on board we had a laugh and then hauled anchor to continue on to the town of Sandwich!

When we arrived in Sandwich, we refueled and went to a nearby restaurant for dinner. What do you think we had for dinner?20160813_193530

Chicken Parm, of course! We were docked right beside the fuel dock, so firing up the barbecue probably wouldn’t have been a great idea.

At the restaurant our server had a bit of a spill with our drinks and managed to pour a full water all over herself. Without missing a beat she laughed it off, made sure she didn’t get anyone else wet and continued working as if nothing had happened. Squishy shoes and all. Very professional and a great attitude about the whole thing. It was a great opportunity for the kids to see that sometimes crap happens and you don’t have to let it ruin your day. It’s all about your attitude. Ryanna has been drawing caricatures of people as we travel, so she did one for the waitress with her squishy shoes, thanking her for the great service and she loved it!20160813_193455

After dinner it was dark, so we headed back to the boat. 20160813_201812

Along the docks there were thousands of small fish (I think mackerel but not sure) swimming around. As one would jump to catch a bug on the water it would create a little splash that would then cause a ripple effect through all of the fish jumping. It was pretty cool to watch. Why do I think they were mackerel? Because when I saw this happening I said “Holy Mackerel!”20160813_202304

Tomorrow we will be visiting the glass making museum in Sandwich for some local culture. If it’s anything like we saw in Italy the kids will love it!

Chow for now!

Author: Doug Law

A technology professional currently taking a three month sabbatical, doing the Down East Loop, aboard a 36 foot Express Cruiser, with his family.

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