Maine - Points North and East
Kittery to Boothbay Harbor
The trip north to Boothbay Harbor will take an overnight stop. There are not a lot of options on this section of the coast, so we go as far as we can in daylight and anchor overnight in Seal Cove. After a noisy, windy night we pull anchor and continue north arriving in Boothbay midday.
After a few phone calls, we secure a mooring buoy from Brown’s Wharf Marina. We are on the edge of the mooring field in the middle of the bay with a fantastic 360-degree view of the islands and the town.
Look in any direction and you see waterfront activity… lobster boats, lobster pounds, seafood restaurants, working boatyards, marinas, Coast Guard boats, tour boats, youth sailing classes in tiny dinghies all share the bay. This is a living working waterfront town. A footbridge conveniently connects both sides of the inner harbor making pedestrian access to town pleasant and feasible. The main street was busy with art galleries, nautical stores, ice cream parlors, and restaurants. Several times a day, the stone church on the hill plays about 30 minutes of bell music. There were plenty of tourists, but the feeling of the town was that real people still lived and worked there.
In the harbor, all boats, large or small, old or young are in excellent condition. Varnish and trim are up to date. Sails may be worn and well used, but not torn or moldy. Mystery fish tail “trophies” adorn the side of a lobster pound. Fresh cooked lobster and fried clam dinners are just a brief dinghy ride away.
The staff at Brown’s Wharf were amazing! Showers, laundry facilities, on-site restaurant, assistance with finding local resources, and… big bonus… a free courtesy car!!! We did not get a chance to try the restaurant but will definitely do so on a future visit. With the loaner car, we were able to make thorough provisioning stops at the Hannaford Supermarket and Rite Aid. On the last afternoon of our visit, Heads of the Harbor, a hair salon within walking distance of the footbridge very graciously squeezed Nora in to their busy schedule. The locals really pull together to make visitors feel welcome. One person is the harbormaster, fire chief, and a police officer. That is what you call multi-tasking!
On our next to last night we experienced rough weather. The predicted storm arrived with a fury. Constant wind of 30+ knots, gusts to 40+ knots. Thunder, lightning, and rain lasted all night. Pressure on the mooring was so intense that the buoy was completely underwater. We shared watch shifts all night to keep an eye on the mooring and any other boats that might break loose. Everything held together, but we sure were tired when morning finally arrived.
Since you cannot fault the town for the inclement weather, overall, we give Boothbay Harbor an A++ hospitality rating.
Port Clyde/Blubber Bay
While at Boothbay, we connect with our friends, Dennis Fox on Sea Fox and, Gale and Mary Plummer on Worknot. They have spent the summer in Nova Scotia and are headed south. Since we are headed north, a rendezvous is set for Port Clyde. Blubber Bay, on the west side of Port Clyde is lovely, small, secluded and guarded by an almost solid field of lobster buoys. Two perfect days at anchor are filled with dinghy trips to the tiny village. The entire town is a general store, outdoor waterfront cafe (with the BEST lobster stew), and the ferry landing for Mohegan Island. An amazing sunset lobster dinner aboard Sea Fox tops off two fabulous days.
Gale Plummer uses the "Binford 5000" Lobster Cracker!
Unplanned “excitement” for Bravo on this stop is a hydraulic steering ram failure. Pink hydraulic fluid rapidly dripping into the lazerette is not a welcome sight at any time, especially anchored in a remote Maine cove. Fortunately, we had a replacement cylinder in Bravo’s spare parts inventory, and mechanic extraordinaire, Gale Plummer from Worknot came aboard to lead us through the replacement process. Four hours later, the repair is complete. Thank you, thank you, thank you to Gale and Dennis for their assistance and support. You cannot say enough about the advantages of “buddy boating”. Morning dawns bright and sunny. Sea Fox and Worknot head south. Bravo heads north to Rockland, Maine.