Tag Archives: Lagoon 400

To Beaufort

Sunday Sept 9

Sunday morning was a bit hectic with last minute shopping and preparations.   The girls took the car to get a few things that were forgotten on the provisioning list, mostly Jack’s ham.   Once they returned the rental car was returned to the airport.  The next couple hours were spent storing provisions, fueling up and eating ice cream.  We cleared the 17th street bridge at 1:00pm and headed into the North Atlantic.

The first few hours couldn’t have been better, we had W to WSW winds around 14 to 18 knots with the boat speed bouncing between 9.5 to 10.5 overground, it truly was beautiful sailing for the first part of the afternoon.  Right after nightfall things changed, the wind began shifting to more of a WNW direction and squalls began to appear on the horizon.   For about 3 hours we continued to change direction avoiding the squalls that were lighting up the sky all around us, didn’t see too many lightning strikes hit the surface, but still made your butt pucker.  Diana was a bit oblivious to this as she was having trouble establishing her sea legs and ended up doing a bit of chumming off the back.  Since we did get Jack up for some support we let him sleep in until 3 am for his watch duties.

Monday Sept 10

The wind continued to clock further north forcing a course further East than we really wanted.  The seas were not overly large but quite steep causing regular pounding from the bridge deck as we beat into them.  Fairly uneventful, not overly comfortable day at sea.  Saw a few dolphins and sharks, had a great dinner and Diana started feeling a bit better.

Tuesday Sept 11

Though the seas continued to be rough we started the day with high spirits knowing we made it to Georgia and ate significant quantities of bacon.  After a few hours the bacon high wore off it was clear the crew was getting a bit tired of the rambunctious seas and pounding so it was decided to keep heading north but finish the day at anchorage in St Catherine’s sound.  The wind remained between 20-25knts out of NNE where we continued to sail at the tightest angle we could, still getting used to these catamarans, definitely not windward machines.

We lined up the channel just around dusk and would have to navigate the sound at dark, good charts, radar and crew on the bow really help with this.  We dropped anchor in about 10 feet of water and all crashed for the evening.

Wednesday Sept 12

After a short conversation over breakfast it was decided we had some time to spare so why not try to wait out the northerly wind and hang out in Hilton Head for a day or two.

We quickly pulled anchor and began our slog north.  The seas were actually more confused than they were on Tuesday which further relieved us with our new plan.  We motorsailed for the majority of the day and made it to Hilton Head at 4pm.  Found a great little marina, Palmetto Bay, to hang out at for a day or two and enjoyed a great meal ashore where once again a significant quantity of sea creatures were consumed.

Thursday Sept 13

Weather and sea conditions have not changed so we decided to stay put in Palmetto Bay for one more day.  This gave us the chance to do a bit more provisioning, exploring and installation of the remote VHF at the helm (no idea why a highly optioned boat does not come with this crucial piece of $100 equipment).  Cynthia got some nasty blisters wearing her mom’s boat shoes san socks while we went and wandered the island we finished the day with Diana and Cynthia baking some pizzas and Jack getting his steak at the Black Marlin restaurant.   As always interesting folks were found at the bar, didn’t stay out too late as we were shoving off in the morning.

Friday Sept 14

I think I remember hearing about sailing to a schedule is not an ideal way to plan a voyage. . . Well that is a luxury for the folks who are not currently employed.  The weather situation calmed somewhat, but still had that damn northerly wind.  We were not going to seas in dangerous conditions, just not ideal, when we have the luxury of time we would have spent more time at Hilton Head, for now back to sea.  After fueling up we shoved off a bit before 9 am.

After exiting the Tybee Channel and turning north we found choppy seas and proceeded to motor directly in to them to make our way to our final destination, Beaufort NC.  Though we were going directly into the seas and wind things have calmed a bit since Wednesday as were only experiencing light pounding from the bridge deck.  We had both fishing lines out, engines turning at 2200 RPM, making close to 6knts so all in all things not so bad.  Had a beautiful evening with Cynthia becoming quite excited over the bioluminescence, which is pretty cool stuff to watch in the wake.

Saturday Sept 15

This will be our last full day at sea as we are estimating coming into Beaufort tomorrow afternoon.

Jack finished up a fairly calm graveyard watch with a bit of boat traffic.  Not long after sunrise it was determined to raise some canvas and try to get this sailboat sailing again.  We couldn’t quite sail as close to the wind as needed for our course, but one engine turning low RPMs helps make us make pretty good speed.

Around 11am we had 15 to 20 dolphins riding our bow waves for a good 15 minutes it was a pretty cool experience and one I’m sure we’ll repeat on our future travels.  I’m sure seeing them frolicking and squeaking in the sea will brighten anyone’s mood no matter how bad the passage.

Still trying to coax as much forward momentum out of the boat as we can with lightening wind, just before going to both engines we luffed the sails to let Jack and Cynthia take a dip.  Jack made himself useful and scraped some growth off the props and all fun ended when a shark decided to come say ‘hi’, not necessarily a man eater but still unnerving.

Had a great lasagna dinner with a beautiful sunset to finish the day with both engines driving us NNW.

Sunday Sept 16

After a quiet yet lumpy night watch spirits were high as we were about to make or goal of Beaufort NC.  The day was started with a great breakfast due to Jack’s cooking and continued to push engine speed a bit higher with the hope of making landfall with time for dinner and drinks.

At 3:30 pm we made landfall at the Town Creek Marina, just inside the Beaufort Bascule bridge,  to top off our fuel tanks and was granted permission to stay at the fuel dock as long as we wished.  Cool deal, because there are cocktails to be had at the Fish Tales restaurant.  After much celebration and a few Rum Punches and Dark and Stormies it was time to shove off and head up the creek to Jarret Bay Boat Yard.

We arrived an hour before dusk and got some local knowledge from s/v Last Dance.  After cleaning up it was time to head into town for dinner and more celebratory cocktails.  We called a cab who was nice enough to call around to find a restaurant with a kitchen that was still open (it’s easy to forget Sundays in small towns can leave your options a bit slim).  We ended up having a great dinner at the Dockhouse and then wandered over to the BackStreet pub which is a really cool little old tavern.  None of us lasted too long as the cab was called once again as we shared a ride with a two other gentleman who got caught up on the town gossip with the cabbie, fun night!

Monday Sept 17

Frantic, Frantic. . . We needed to get the boat hauled, cleaned and emptied of our things to catch our flights out of Raleigh at 3:45.

The boat was hauled, pressure washed and stacked fairly quickly.  I was hoping to give it a good wash down for it’s long storage,  but barely had time to think.  We got all things put away, locked up and had a conversation w/ the yard manager on things we wanted to get worked on. . . . Time to go!


First plan was to get a cab from the boat yard, then to enterprise to rent a car and then drive to Raleigh. . . not enough time to make it by 3:45.

So, ‘Hey cabbie, can you take us to the airport?’

‘Sure, New Bern, no problem’

‘No, Raliegh’

‘Hmm, let me check with my other cab’ . . . ‘sure how about $250’

‘Sounds good, let’s go’

So we took a cab all the way from Beaufort to Raleigh; had plenty of snacks to share and about 30 minutes in everyone was out cold.  The cabbie was a pretty interesting fellow who moved his family from Arlington VA to Beaufort for a more simple life.  He quit his accounting practice and drives cabs to stay busy, says it’s the best decision he’s ever made.  Hmm.

We’ll we made it to the airport with just a few minutes to spare, but our flights were delayed anyway.  We all shared a good linner at the restaurant and bid a farewell.   It was a great  10 days and couldn’t have done it without Cynthia and Jack.  Thanks a lot for the help!

Prepping to Head North

Friday Sept 7

Three of us arrived blurry eyed from the overnight flight from SFO, but ready to get started prepping ourselves and the boat for the journey north.  First on the agenda was to find a place to stay, initially I thought it would be easier to stay in a hotel for a few nights as the boat may be in complete disarray.  Instead we followed Jack’s lead to stay on the boat at a hotel Marina, Jack has a lot of personal knowledge of Fort Lauderdale so we let him make the decision on location and make the arrangements at the Fort Lauderdale Hilton Marina, which was an great choice, much closer to the places we needed to be driving to and from as well as close to cocktails.  We got the boat moved over from the private dock it sat at since June and secured ourselves behind some of the many mega yachts that make our proud ship look a bit small.  The afternoon began the beginning of significant credit card exercise at West Marine.

Saturday Sept 8

Our 4th crew member, Cynthia, arrived in time for our shakedown cruise which also included Jack’s friend Alan.  More eyes the better to find any issues with the boat before we head out to sea.  We spent a good portion of the day enjoying the fresh breeze and putting Ryana through her paces.  No significant issues were found except a few lose shackles that were tightened up.  We returned to the Hilton Marina said farewell to Alan and wandered back to West Marine as well as the grocery for provisioning.  We packed the Escalade to the gills which showed it just wasn’t frivolous upgrade, we needed the space, I’m a bit upset I didn’t get a picture.

The evening was met with lively conversation as we met up with Cynthia’s cousins and Jack’s brother and sister-in-law for dinner at the Raw bar (one of Jack’s old haunts).  After a number of rounds and many individual sea creatures consumed it was back to the boat to get some good rest before our watch schedule would begin.

9 Days in Florida, 1500 miles on the rental car, partied in Key West and bought a boat!

Well it’s a little late to the presses, but we got a boat!  We planned an exploratory trip down to Florida to look at a number of different catamaran models and made a pledge not to buy anything even leaving our checkbook at home.  But on the first day of looking that thought went right out the window and we executed an EFT. . .

Our dream boat for the past three years has been a Lagoon 400, we have spent the last 3 Strictly Sail shows sitting on the same boat looking at every nook and cranny day dreaming how great a platform she would be to cruise on.  The problem is that the 400 is so new there are very few available on the secondary market and they are priced close to new boat values.  As we were looking at a used Lagoon 420 were making comments on how it compared to the 400 and we were quickly directed to a brand new 400 that was shown in the Miami boat show and offered well below market.  After a couple days of hemming and hawing we decided to put in an offer and told ourselves that we wouldn’t negotiate if they came back and wanted more, a day later we got the call and the boat was ours!!!

So the soon to be christened “Ryana” is a 2012 40 foot Lagoon 400 with all the goodies; 3 zone AC, genset, electric winches, radar, AIS, cockpit enclosure and a lot more.  We are both very excited to be able to take our upcoming cruise on the boat of our dreams.   We’ll be traveling back to Fort Lauderdale June 2nd to take ownership and will be spending a week fitting her out and relaxing on the hook.