Monthly Archives: July 2012

Porpoise in the Bay

harbor porpoise, maine windjammer, maine wildlife, maine vacations, schooner vacations
Good morning everybody. Well let me tell you about a very busy summer. The weather has been absolutely fabulous for the past month. Last nite we did receive a sprinkling of rain. The rain that folks complain about onshore has yet to reach the bay. Localized weather events seldom look the same once that hot humid air reaches the cooler maritime air.

The porpoise have been plentiful in the bay this summer. What most folks, at first sight, call dolphin are actually harbor porpoise. Both marine mammals they do differ in size, profile, and behavior. Both stir up great wonder in the hearts of anyone that catches a glimpse of them so the name doesn’t really matter. But, just for the record:harbor porpoise are some of the smallest cetaceans averaging 5 feet in length. They are toothed whales and feed on small fish. They lack the familiar “bottle nose” that you might have seen Flipper sporting instead having a blunt snout. I have never seen a “shoal” of porpoise ride the bow wave of a ship like I have seen dolphin do. Have you? Call them what you will they are very cool. Sometimes on watch I hear them in the darkness near the boat with their very distinct “puuuff” breathing sound as they surface nearby. Doesn’t that just make your arm hairs tingling with excitement! I have yet to get a picture I really like but the good news is I have all summer to keep trying. And when I find one I really like I will be sure to share it.

Have a great day. Be well. Do good.

Making Repairs

schooner vacations, windjammers in Maine, maine windjammers

Capt. Barry King repairing a cracked oar underway with the materials at hand.

Good morning everyone. The deck crew are getting stronger everyday and maybe a little too proficient at their rowing skills. Holy cow but they don’t know their own strength. So underway repairs were necessary before we could get ashore for this week’s lobster picnic. As you can see necessity was the mother of invention in this scenario. With some wood glue and a bit of fine black seine twine applied with a serving mallet we were able to affect repairs in an hours time. Needless to say the oar is stronger than ever. We did use it to get to the picnic that evening so I guess it works. The serving mallet helps the seine twine get pinging tight by adding just a little stretch to it acting like a clamp. We could see the wood glue squeezing through the serving. Leather was reapplied over the repair and this oar is ready for another few years, at least.

Have a great day. Be well. Do good.

schooner vacations, underway repairs, maine windjammers

Using a serving mallet to lightly stretch the seine twine while repairing a cracked oar.

Murky Dismal and the Rainbow Effect

maine windjammer, Great Schooner Race, maine photography, schooner vacationsGood morning everyone. We are already off the dock and out training for this weeks Great Schooner Race. We have some hard core racers with us, veterans of many a battle and defenders of the Cutty Sark Cup as well as aficionados of fun. There will be a great opportunity for folks to view the start of the Race from the Rockland Breakwater. The finish will be just off of Camden followed by a big fete for the competitors afterwards. We’ll report in later with all the results.

So after a week with Jim Dugan, who, by the way, paddled out to Mark I 4 miles off Camden and back yesterday, my photography skills are hopefully a dight better. We saw a few rainbows last week and Jim was quick to point out that rainbows are some of the most abused images he knows of. (I am paraphrasing.) Jim has nothing against rainbows but it is way too easy to want to put pictures of rainbows everywhere you can imagine for friends and neighbors to see. For us hack photographers we think we suddenly have this rare image caught in a moment of sheer magic that the entire world needs to see. Unfortunately, rarely does the image communicate the wonder we felt at that moment. Like peeing your pants in a charcoal gray suit it often leaves us with a worm fuzzy feeling but others don’t get the same effect. So call me “Murky Dismal” but if I took anything away from Jim’s lessons last week it is this: Images I share with others shouldn’t need explaining. They should tell their own story to the viewer. If you invite your friends over for a slideshow and find them asleep in their chairs when you turn the lights back on that should tell you something. So get out there and shoot, shoot, shoot! Don’t just spray and pray but really think about the subject of your image and what you want it to say to others. Shoot as if it was the only means of communication you have. Then invite your friends over for a slideshow and see what happens.

Have a great day. Be well. Do good.