Sadly, as is always the case for anyone living north of the Carolinas, winterizing the systems aboard a cruiser becomes a necessity before the damaging effects of ice has a chance to do serious damage. Sometimes, like last season, the Rose spends her winter months resting comfortably in the quiet water of her slip. This winter she’ll be kept on land. Unfortunately, the winterization requirements don’t change much based on location (except if kept in heated storage buildings).
The Rose has already had two good seasons on her Petit Ultima-60 bottom-paint, which is the main reason for her haul-out this winter. Generally, bottom-paints don’t take well to land-based storage; contact with the air significantly shortens life of the paint. She possibly could have made a third season on her Ultima, but when combined with all the things that can go wrong with water lay-up in-water plus all the maintenance-issues planned for spring, this weekend was the best window available, even if the weather was gorgeous with no hint of winter approaching.
And gorgeous it was:
Winterizing Christina’s fresh-water systems is relatively straight-forward, basically dumping the fresh-water tank and pumping antifreeze through the entire system until it flows pink. Winterizing the air-conditioning is equally straight-forward, closing the A/C’s seacock intake and filling the strainer with pink while the A/C sucks antifreeze through itself. A quick shot of pink into the A/C drip-tray with a little more pink down the shower-drain, both-of-which funnel into the shower’s sump-pump on its way out the hull. (Check out last year’s winterizing for reference, winterizing-the-christina-rose)
Winterizing the engines and generator, commonly called “raw-water” systems, is now equally as straight-forward of a process thanks to the installation of Perko Flush-Pro fittings (see installing-perko-flushpro-fittings), though the actual raw-water flushing with antifreeze will have to wait until she’s on dry-land because the boatyard is 3.6nm away and her engines need cooling for that distance. A couple hours spent making sure the engines received a complete oil-change with only the best: Royal Purple’s HPM marine synthetic multi-viscosity 40W oil and HUGE 30-1218 oil-filters. See any difference between the stock 35-866340Q03 filters?!
Christina also received new Sierra 18-7945 10-micron water-separator filters instead of the Mercury35-802893Q01 filters for both fuel-pumps. A quick wash-down in the bilge then all her canvas came-down in preparation for shrink-wrapping. Everything that could mold, rust, rot, freeze, or expire was pulled off the Rose, completely-filling the Captain’s crew-cab (and garage)!
Christina was carefully wrapped in her mooring-cover in time for the Saturday-evening, and like a bushy-puppy during a bath, looking slim and less-majestic than typical:
Sunday morning’s plans were simple: pump-out the head, get some fuel, then take Christina to her haul-out. Since engine-work is planned over the winter-months, the Captain decided to take the rear deck out of the boat prior to shrink-wrapping, which meant prior to driving over to haul-out. Quickly, the captain removed the Rose’s mooring cover then deck, leaving the deck on-shore for winter storage. A short-trip to the marina for a full pump-out of the holding tank, some fuel-stabilizer and fuel (which coincidently exactly-matched the 64-gallon consumption noted by the electronics during her previous cruise), then Christina was on her way to her winter resting place…
The slow 3.6nm cruise from Christina’s slip over to the boat yard afforded a little time to reminisce about all of 2012’s adventures aboard the Christina Rose…
- This season’s kick-off (season-kick-off) on April 7th, where a couple false-starts due to low engine antifreeze levels were eventually overcome, cruising 8.7nm before returning to port due to sour weather.
- Childhood friends came out (cruising-with-friends) the following weekend, with a trip to St. Michaels to visit the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum on a less-than-optimal day. The visitors survived the heavy seas on Eastern Bay, which was impressive for non-seafarers, who cruised 38.3nm without a single complaint. Christina and crew enjoys every chance to visit the CBMM.
- Christina fired-up on May 2nd, to take a quick cruise to meet new friends(a-cruise-to-meet-new-friends) who were in the Eastern-leg of their Great Loop tour, visiting St. Michaels. Once again, conditions weren’t that great as this Captain-only trip cruised 30.0nm across a choppy Eastern Bay in the face of 30+knot winds. Christina handled the weather and seas like a pro, arriving at her slip well after dusk.
- Some exciting electronic improvements were finalized on the Rose on May 4th, where she finally powered-up her new Garmin GMR24HD radar and KVH M3ST satellite-TV mounted aboard the new SeaView PMA-DM1-M3 masthead (installing-a-dual-masthead-radarsattv). Hours (days/weeks) of effort finally paid-off for the Captain, proving it was possible (though certainly not easy) to install new electronics and get all the wiring where it needed to go.
- A trip with family on May 12th was Christina’s first real leisurely cruise of the year (baltimore-or-bust), where the Rose cruised across the Chesapeake Bay en-route to Baltimore’s inner harbor while helicopters toyed in her wake. A generator hiccup (fuel-pump) prevented meal-preparation while the crew enjoyed the Science Center, but all was overcome using the harbor’s shore power. Christina cruised 52.7nm without any other mechanical problems, arriving at her berth as total darkness arrived.
- Immediately following-up the previous day’s awesome cruise, Christina headed out again with family and crew southbound for the Miles River on her second leisurely cruise of the year (family-time). This time, she took-in all the local scenery at tug-boat speeds, dropping-hook for the first time of the year. Another first of the season was swimming, where the First Mate and Gator Bait took early-season dips into the Miles. Cruising a total 43.9nm, the Rose played host to her crew, Captain’s parents, plus the Captain’s cousins for a truly enjoyable party-barge trip.
- Memorial Day weekend was the first non-rush, relaxing, time spent aboard the Rose in 2012 (memorial-days-weekend), where Christina was finally able to drop-hook and spend a night away from the docks. Cruising up the Chester River, the Captain never hit the throttles, cruising a total of 30.7nm without ever exceeding 7knots. Great food while on the hook, great views while underway, the only down-side to the weekend was the idiocy of all the holiday-weekend-warriors. Crew spent almost three straight days aboard the Rose.
- Some maintenance took place during Memorial Day weekend (installing-kayak-mounts), to install Kayak-mounts for the Rose’s dinghies. A simple installation, though the Captain did slip off the swim-platform into the drink!
- As seems to be the case for anything involving boats, a trip to the doctor was required on May 31st (trip-to-the-doctor), to attend to the busted generator that failed during her time in Baltimore. This Captain-only trip took place in the early morning hours, traveling only 3.6nm to the yard. All’s well that ends well, so they say…
- June 8th started expensively for the Captain of the Rose (june-8-2012-b-o-a-t), where over $3K in repairs cured Christina of many of her ailments (though not all). It’s easier to take those kind of repair bills when everything works better than it has, but everything OTHER THAN the generator was repaired; not a good thing since Christina was playing host to friends the following morning. Cathy and Bob joined the crew, for a trip to the Narrows to see Thunder on the Narrows, followed by a trip across Eastern Bay past St. Michaels and up the Miles River for some sightseeing. Lots of swimming, food, and drinks… an awesome weekend with friends, even without an operable generator. This weekend was one-of the first weekends where biking on-shore replaced cruising on the water for Christina’s crew. The Rose cruised 47.9nm this weekend, while the crew spent almost two solid days aboard.
- Christina made her way to Baltimore’s Fort McHenry for the 200th-anniversary of the National Anthem celebrations the weekend of June 18th (flag-still-there), where the busy Patapsco River came to a halt during aerial acrobatics by all sorts of aircraft, including the Blue Angels. Leaving the Patapsco after the ceremony proved life-threatening for the Rose and her crew, but she handled the 8’-swells like a pro (others weren’t so lucky). Once back in the calm Chesapeake Bay, Christina cruised to her favorite anchorage location up the Chester River, maintaining a flat and smooth trip while all of the crew slept. A terrific night spent at-anchor, great food on the Magma, a brilliant sunset, then a night-time cruise home (the Captain’s favorite time to cruise). The Rose traveled 68.4nm this weekend, while the crew managed to get some biking in during the short 36-hour weekend.
- Due to an injury to the First Mate, the weekend of June-22 (quiet-waters) was very low-key, though enjoyable. The captain installed the MercMon gateway, Mercruiser’s Mercury Monitor gauge that finally tied the two networks (engines and chartplotter) together aboard the Rose. Cruising to one of her favorite locations on the Chester River, Christina dropped hook and settled-in for the weekend while steak and lobster cooked on the Magma. Awesome weather with a beautiful sunset, the Captain extended the weekend to 64-hours aboard with 24.9nm underway.
- June 29th was the start of what was planned to only be a short-weekend (a-long-short-weekend), before the 4th-of-July festivities the following week. However, Mother Nature had different plans for the entire Washington DC area, with a very powerful storm that took power out for the region. Fortunately, Christina’s crew made their way to the docks Friday before there was even a hint of a storm, because the crew’s hometown was devastated by the storm that knocked-out power for almost a week of above 100degree days. This weekend was one of the best aboard the Rose all year, shore power and generator power worked fine, and Christina put many miles of open-curtain cruising under her belt en-route to the Miles River and annual fireworks show in St. Michaels. A short police-escort home, and Christina concluded her cruising for the weekend, but not the time spent aboard for the crew, who took full-advantage of closed-work (thanks to no-power) and the July 4th holiday. Christina cruised only 37.4nm for 2.5-hours, but her crew managed to spend 122-hours aboard this life-boat.
- Christina was to attend parties with friends, however the weekend of July 22nd was almost a wash-out (almost-a-washout), due to torrential downpours most of the weekend. Finally the weather cleared-enough for the Rose and her crew to attend a shore-side party up the Magothy River, traveling 32.6nm under less-than-ideal conditions across the Chesapeake Bay to meet our friends. But, even a bad day on the water beats a good day at home!
- More maintenance was planned August 5th for the Rose, where the Captain-only weekend addressed lighting-issues to prevent future police-escorts and a fuel-flow sensor installation on the generator to prevent future fuel-outages (maintenance-weekend). Christina had no miles cruising, but the Captain had 48-hours of alone-time with the Rose… always an enjoyable time.
- The following weekend, August 12th, the Admiral and Captain planned a little alone-time aboard the Rose (calm-before-the-storm); the first-mate away with family. What started out to be plans for a simple cruise up-river weekend turned into one of the worst storms Christina has ever piloted through, as a surprise vertical-wall torrent involving high-winds, high-rainfall, and lightning completely rocked the ride-home. At one point, the Admiral donned her life-jacket, though the Rose proved how solid a ride she is once-again. Before the storm was one of the most-enjoyable cruises ever undertaken, a trawler-trip northeast up the Chester River for Chestertown… a gorgeous day, all curtains were down, the Admiral piloted the Rose for many of those miles. After a great meal at The Fish Whistle, the trip-home was completely foreign to the trip out, forcing the captain to throttle-up into the freak storm at one point. 43.5nm traveled, the trip-out averaging almost 1.2nm/gal, the way back reaching as low as 0.4nm/gal! The Captain and Admiral took-in another enjoyable bicycle-ride, touching the water on both-sides of Kent Island.
- August 17th was a non-cruise weekend for the Admiral and First-Mate (h-o-w-hotel-on-water), thanks to the Captain’s job out-of-town interfering with life once-again. The Rose was a comfortable hotel for the Admiral and First-Mate, who spent much of the weekend at the marina’s pool meeting new friends. A little crabbing, a little fishing, a lot of swimming, then an early-rain put an end to their weekend aboard 48-hours after their arrival.
- Labor Day weekend was supposed to be a relaxing weekend filled with cruising the Christina Rose around the Chesapeake (labor-day-labor), however as often is the case, a freak mechanical-issue prevented the Rose from leaving her berth. What later was determined to simply be a shorted-out water-pressure sensor in the port-engine took a technician 4-hours to determine the cause of Christina’s demonic-possession. On the bright-side however, no fuel was expended over the long-weekend and the First-Mate enjoyed shore-time with his friend Kaitlyn more than cruising anyway. Great food was prepared on the Magma dock-side while the kids caught plenty of Maryland blue-crab and fish. The high-point of this weekend was arrival of new crew-member Nitro who showed every sign of being a seafarer. The weekend was cut-short at 34-hours aboard, since a busted engine was making the Captain unpleasant, as would holiday-traffic West if the crew delayed their return home.
- The weekend of September 15th was that weekend planned, and looked forward to, since before the start of the season (finally-relaxation). There were no plans, not many people at the marina, weather wasn’t overly-warm nor overly-bright. There were no destination-plans, nor was there a curfew to be tied to. But, relaxation is what this weekend delivered. A great cruise. A little swimming. A great dinner on the Magma. A picturesque sunset to the sounds of seabirds provided a great night on the hook. Kayak shore-excursions with new crew-member Nitro resulted in seeing nighttime wildlife that had never been seen before. While the weekend started late, thanks to the non-boating world interfering with the cruising-life, it also ended late with the Captain intentionally working from his “remote office” onboard the Rose Monday morning. Basically, this was that one weekend you want to have every weekend. 24.6nm cruised but 37gallons of fuel used, most of which is due to fast-cruising and many of the 48-hours onboard while on the generator.
- Similar to those plans back on August 12th, the October 6th weekend was planned to be a cruise to Chestertown for food (a-cruise-for-supper), though at a much quicker-pace. And, much like the August 12th trip, a significant storm kicked-up making the trip home quite bumpy. In-between the cruise-out and the trip-home though was completely different this trip, as Christina’s crew enjoyed dinner at the Fish Whistle, then relaxed dockside fishing and talking with strangers along the Chestertown boardwalk. The Rose stayed at the public-docks until almost dusk, ensuring her trip home those 22nm would be in complete darkness. Most of the trip back to her berth was enjoyable, GPS and RADAR worked perfectly, but the last few miles west through Chester Bay was heavier than desired. The First-Mate spent most of the time below-decks, proving he’s a future seaman, riding out 6-footers below-decks! Total cruise was 44nm, for a nice end-of-season run.
Like all good things, the 2012 season comes to an end with a short 3.6nm-trip to the yard, with something north-of $13K in expenses for slip, repairs, and new electronics. 534.8nm cruised this year, burning roughly 764-gallons of fuel (averaging around $4.00/gal at the marina), adding another $3K to the tally. Throw in gas/tolls/food for every trip by the crew to the marina from the homestead, probably close to $3.5K for the 25-or-so trips this year, bringing the yearly total right-around $20K out-of-pocket to enjoy time with Christina. That works out to $37.40 per nautical-mile cruised or $0.57 per minute for the approximately 577-hours (not including maintenance-hours) spent enjoying the Rose this year.
Worth every penny.
Happy Wakes! Feel free to drop me a note anytime, ChristinaRose@edickent.com