Sunday, July 28, 2013

Day 3: Petoskey to Traverse City, stopping at Power Island

Wet Ink under a stormy sky
Sunday, July 28th: Today we were scheduled to leave Petoskey and travel about 60 miles to Traverse City. The weather in the morning did not seem to be in our favor, but even worse weather was predicted to be on it's way, so we decided to start the journey anyway! We left the harbor in Petoskey and entered Little Traverse Bay to about 3-4 foot waves and a strong, gusty west wind. Not a warm welcome for our first leg of the journey!

Power Island ahead
As we neared Grand Traverse Bay though, the storm system seemed to dissipate over the lake and we took a chance on a detour to check out Power Island (about 12 miles from Traverse City). We were glad we did! The clouds parted to let through a bright blue sky, and the water was crystal clear and sparkling. Finally the beautiful Northern Michigan water we've been waiting for!

Wet Ink & Seapickle anchored on Power Island
Walking the rocky shore, Power Island
We still weren't fully trusting the weather or waves on Grand Traverse Bay, so after a few hours of playing on Power Island, we packed up at traveled the last 12 miles to Traverse City. It was a rude awakening as soon as we left the protected harbor of the island. The waves and wind had built even more, and even blew our front canvas right off! (I caught it)

At dock, Traverse City
Christa feeding the baby ducks
 We had a bit of a scare again while docking, and a strong west wind gust caught the boat just at the wrong moment. Ben had to throttle forward pretty hard to prevent our stern from hitting another boat. Not fun, but we recovered and got in the slip with the help of a friendly dockhand. :-)  Once we were both settled in, in side by side slips this time, we celebrated the fact that we made it yet again! The baby ducks also got to celebrate with us while eating goldfish crackers from Christa.

Walking to dinner at Mackinaw Brewing Company
Ben & Dana at Mackinaw Brewing Company
As usual, our first order of business when docking at a new spot is figuring out what's for dinner! There are many great options in Traverse City, but we opted for Mackinaw Brewing Company, just a short walk from the marina. Ben and I both loved the Peninsula Pale Ale and the fish & chips. We really enjoyed the atmosphere, and are definitely planning to return. Our experience so far in Traverse City is 10 times better than the last time we were here. They seemed to do a lot of improvements to the park outside the marina, and the tunnel to downtown was much brighter and more welcoming. We can't wait to explore some more in the next couple days.

Goodnight Traverse City
Trip Details:
Petoskey, MI to Traverse City, MI (with Power Island Stop)- 66 miles
Left Petoskey 9:30am, arrived Power Island 12:15pm
Left Power Island 2:00pm, arrived Traverse City Marina 2:30pm
 Weather: strong, gusty west wind, waves 2-4 ft. Storms on radar, but never did storm on us. Beautiful & sunny by the time we reached Power Island.
Fuel Burned: 38 gallons

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