After spending most of the summer on the water, cruising in Belle Starr, a fitting crescendo was the famous gathering of wood boats from near and far, in Port Townsend, Washington. This festival has grown to nearly fill the Port Hudson marina from shore to shore. Thousands of visitors mingle to view hundreds of boats of all sizes and designs.
The festivities are a bit overwhelming for a boatbuilder from a small coastal town, so I concentrate on visiting with friends and catching up with sailing tales and life's changes. Seldom have I actually taken in the entire show, preferring to spend my time in the blockade outside the marina - the small floating city of water tribe on anchor. If you think that after spending months sailing, I'd had enough, you'd be mistaken. The long weekend offered plenty of opportunity to spread canvas, not the least, the great "sail-by" of wood boats on Sunday, the last day of the festival.
Two boats stood out for me this year. The first is the Blue Moon, Katie & Ginny. This Thomas Gillmer gaff cutter has some unique details that really make her stand out. Her clam-shell cabin is both accommodating and low profile. But most of all, she is pretty under a full press of sail.
I woke one fine morning to gander about my neighborhood and behold, a larger version of the Stone Horse was anchored nearby. The Macaw is a Sam Crocker design of the same name, and her owner claims his vessel is the only one built to that design. She is 36 feet in length, on deck and sports a gaff ketch rig. I am considering a small pilothouse, similar to that shown, for the companionway on Belle Starr.
As is often said, pictures tell the story. You will find random photos from the festival weekend on Doryman's Flickr site. Please enjoy.
Thanks to all the hard working people who make this giant festival possible. DoryMan raises a glass to you all.
Photos by Wild Heather