Happily leaving Eagle Harbor, we only had 7 miles planned for the day. A nice straight line connected us to our next destination – Clark Island Marine State Park. With the dinghy in tow for the trip, we set out to cross our first big shipping lane to get there. The wind slept in that day, leaving us to motor the entire way making it the last 14+ miles of straight motoring – not the greatest resume for a sailboat. The one other sailboat we came across who was trying to sail seemed to be moving backwards thanks to the current.
Clark is a tiny island, only a few acres total, but comes packed with two anchorages, two beaches (one rocky, one sandy) and numerous campsites of all variety (your choice of wooded or beach). It even had it’s own disappearing rock island off shore that seemed to be the place of choice for the local sunbathing seals. Said rocky island was a concern as we planned to visit Clark. At high tide it is complete covered by the water, so we planned to arrive at low tide to ensure we kept a good distance from certain disaster. The seals lazily welcomed us with a few grunts and squirts as we entered the anchorage. There, we surveyed the five mooring balls and made our choice. Again, the mooring went smoothly with only a single miss and re-attempt due to some added wind in the formula.
With the dinghy already in the water (towing for the win!) we quickly headed to shore to register for a single night stay on the ball. The only other people on the island was a large family just packing up their camp to head back home. We would have the place to ourselves for the remainder of our stay so we explored the other beach with a thermos of hot cocoa. Moose chased sticks on the sandy beach while Kerri did a little extra exploring on her own… I assume looking for fungus.
As night came we settled into bed. Kerri took some extra measures on how we tied onto the mooring ball to hopefully prevent the return of our bad neighbor. But as luck would have it there was a different neighbor here and he too was an asshole. Instead of banging on our hull all night (the wind preventing that lovely sound) the chain made an equally horrible sound as it clattered back and forth through the ball as the swell caused it to rise and drop. Add too that the nearly 20 mph winds that we were not all that protected from, and you can imagine the quality of sleep we both got that night. Like sleeping on a bucking bronco with that bastard of a mooring ball playing a tambourine in your ear. By morning we had decided not to stay for the three day limit.