July 29, 2015 – Wednesday – Benjamin Islands to Meldrum Bay Marina – 46.8 statute miles traveled

The forecast was for winds to pick up around noon so we pulled anchor and were on our way by 0605. We felt our way out of the bay among the rocks sprinkling the southern entrance and by 0626 were in deep water and headed on a course for Meldrum Bay.

We had intended to go to Blind River but in the middle of the night I was awake thinking that the distance to Meldrum Bay was almost identical but on the south side of the North Channel instead of the north side. By going to Meldrum Bay it would not only save a day but also give us a place to hole up during the next two days of heavy winds. This would place us only one fairly long days run from Drummond Island and U. S. Customs clearance. I am sure there were things at Blind River worth seeing and experiencing but on a trip like this one cannot do everything and so the choice was made.

The wind and waves were once again on our beam but not bad so we had a comfortable though rolling ride. This was pretty much a straight run west on the North Channel and the course took us on a diagonal line across the middle of the channel from north to south. After a six hour and twenty minute ride we pulled into Meldrum Bay Marina.

Meldrum Bay is on a fairly remote west end of hugh Manitoulin Island, purportedly the largest island in fresh water in the world. There is nothing there but the marina a few houses and an Inn with a dining room. Still, by the evening the marina was nearly full of all the boats thinking to come in out of the winds.

Knot Home also changed their minds about Blind River and came in about a half hour after us. While helping Knot Home get the lines on the dock, as strong winds were blowing them off of the dock and they have significant windage, the wind blew my favorite hat off of my head and into the water. There was no way to reach it and it drifted away and then sank.

Meldrum Bay Marina.  This outpost is a 40 mile drive to the nearest grocery store.

Meldrum Bay Marina. This outpost is a 40 mile drive to the nearest grocery store.

Knot Home and Sea To See at the Meldrum Bay Marina

Knot Home and Sea To See at the Meldrum Bay Marina

Then we met another looper boat “Sea Moss” out of New Jersey. We all gathered for Docktails along with some folks on a sail boat from Minneapolis. They keep the sailboat on Lake Superior near the Apostle Islands. Lots of tall tails were told as the evening progressed.

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