Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Day 12: Frankfort, MI to Pentwater, MI

OK, real update this time. Around 2:00am last night, I woke up because the boat was rocking back and forth and there was lots of sounds of water hitting the side of the boat. After really waking up, I heard the wind. Since we were in a protected harbor and it was rocking this bad, I knew the wind must be howling out there - not good news for the lake. The next morning, we discovered what the wind had done.

The waves were crashing over the break wall at the harbor entrance. The wind was screaming. Weather radio had it at 30 kts with gusts into the 50's. Waves were 5' growing to 10' as the day went on. Perfect. I was down below trying to quickly pour the last cup of coffee out when we hit the end of the harbor and into the surf. Coffee went every where. Up top, computers and cameras (along with everything else) flew off counters and onto the floor. Everything that was not bolted down came crashing. Even some stuff that really was bolted down eventually came crashing off.

The abuse the pounding continued for the next 6 hours. The original plan was to make it to Holland, MI for a possible layover day. We made it 60 miles (6 hours at todays speed) short of that goal due to the waves. Neither us nor possibly the boat could take it any longer. We poked our head into Pentwater to take a break and have lunch. We ended up staying the night. Getting on land was nice. We went straight to a restaurant that was luckily still serving breakfast at 1:30pm. Since I had about a half cup of coffee in me at 7am and nothing else, I was ready for eggs. No one was really sick on the trip, it was just tiring to get pounded by the waves all day.

Rob and Betsy left us in Pentwater that afternoon. They had to get back to Detroit for a wedding this weekend. The 4 of us that are left relaxed, did some work and went to bed. The wind is still screaming out there and conditions tomorrow do not look much better but we "only" have 60 miles to go. We will make the final 80 mile crossing of the lake into Chicago area on Friday morning. Erica flies out Saturday morning and I fly out Tuesday morning back to reality.

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