On a recent singlehanded passage from Cobourg to Whitby I had what you might call "an incident".
Winds were 10-12 knots from the ESE, so almost a dead downwind 32 mile sail.
Waves were 2-3ft.
Sailed the entire way wing on wing with genoa poled out to windward.
No spinnaker because it could be a handful taking down single handed.
Besides, I promised Rita I would not fly it.
Around Port Hope I went below to get some lunch.
Every couple of minutes I would hear a thump from the v-birth.
It was wavy, and boat was pitching around, so I thought it was something shifting the anchor locker, or in the compartments under the bed.
I pulled into Whitby and tied up to the visitor's dock for a pumpout.
I discovered that my anchor was partially deployed:
The 20lb CQR was fully under water. From the photo above, you can see the black portion of my anchor ball sticking out of the anchor locker door. Attached to the anchor and the anchor ball is a 10ft piece of 3/16" orange para chord tied with bowlines.
When I opened the anchor locker, the ball went further forward:
This orange piece of para chord was all that was keeping 60ft of chain and 60ft of rode from fully deploying! The anchor was suspended probably 6ft underwater. This was the bumping that I heard down below.
Just imagine if the anchor dug in on the bottom of Lake Ontario @5.5 knots.
I was sailing in about 60ft of water.
I kind of thought the boat was sluggish only doing between 4.5 and 5.5 knots in 12 knots of breeze!
How long was I pulling the anchor through the water?
|Click for BIGGER|
This photo shows the anchor being deployed OFF COBOURG!
No leaks; may look below the waterline for marks.
The anchor usually sits securely on the anchor roller, and the chain is usually around the gypsy. However, I took the chain off the gypsy to fit the power chord in the locker just before leaving.
When leaving the dock at Cobourg singlehanded, the wind was pushing me against the dock. I could not motor forward, as the bow was being pushed inwards. I pushed the stern away from the dock and reversed out MAYBE clipping the protruding anchor deploying it into the water.
Lesson Learned: always secure the anchor with the anchor roller pin!