Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Cruisin', Trollin', Haulin', and Chumin'

I've found the best place to be right now is out on the water.  The mornings are brisk, the sun shines bright, and the fog has left for the winter.  Plus, the fall is the only time that I am able to leave the shop for a few hours and see what all the fuss is about! 

The last few weeks have been full of boating adventures.  I took my first ride on Lake Michigan in a 29' Rinker.  I must admit, that I always chuckled when people say the Great Lakes can be rough.  I thought it would pale in comparison to some of the days I've been caught out on Penobscot Bay in six footers.  The day we chose was beautiful except for the fact that the wind was gusting to about 30 mph.  Trying to navigate narrow granite channels in wind driven chop can really get the blood pumping!


Back on our home turf, I tried to race a new 310 Rinker with twin V8s in a Downeast-style 248 Eastern with a Honda 150  The battle began on the Sunday trip back from the Maine Boats, Homes, and Harbors Show in Rockland.  My classic hull tailed the Rinker to about Camden Harbor.  I pinned the throttle but in the end...I got smoked on the way up the Penobscot River!  You never lose though when you are surrounded by surrounded by the beauty of the Maine Coast and the Penobscot River. 


The best part I've saved for last.  The Discover Channel is responsible for this nonsense.  You see they have this "Shark Week" series that really got a lot of the guys around Hamlin's Marina thinking.  Yeah, we could do that too!  Yeah, we live near the ocean and there are mean sharks everywhere!  Well we put our heads together (scary thought) and started drafting a list and a plan.  Well of course we needed all that exotic shark fishing gear, and you know you've got to drive all over the state to get fresh bait like pogies, frozen mackeral, and buckets of chum.  In the end there were four foolish souls who ended up waking up at 3:30 a.m. and launching a 22' Scout Abaco at Southwest Harbor.  The morning started off just perfect with a Box of Joe and we quickly filled the bait well with live mackeral which we hoped would become unwilling victims to Mr. Sharky.  I had made it my business to load the perfect shark fishing song mix on my Ipod.  The Scorpions, Survivor, and Guns n Roses streamed out of the sound system as we made our way 25 miles out to Mt. Desert Rock where the big boys play.  Six hours of cutting bait and dropping bloody entrails over the side of the boat produced not one Maneater.  Oh well...there will be a next time soon!