Monday, September 24, 2012

Just a Few Knots

Last night I was playing around with some string and my iPhone. Here's the results.

Clove Hitch

clove hitch - last night i was playing around with some string and my iphone

Rolling Hitch

rolling hitch - last night i was playing around with some string and my iphone

Bowline

bowline - last night i was playing around with some string and my iphone

Anchor Bend

anchor bend - last night i was playing around with some string and my iphone

Monkey's Fist

monkey's fist - last night i was playing around with some string and my iphone

And lastly, the Turk's Head. After three years of attempting this one, I finally tied it from an illustration. I could never wrap my head around photos I'd seen in a half dozen other knot and seamanship books I own.

turk's head - last night i was playing around with some string and my iphone

Mountain Springs Trout Park, Highlandville, Missouri

mountain springs trout park

Sunday afternoon, we drove down to Highlandville to do a little fishing at Mountain Springs Trout Park. Some friends of our had told us about how easy it was for kids to fish there and it sounded like a good experience for our daughter, Gwen.

mountain springs trout park

mountain springs trout park

ducks, mountain springs trout park

mountain springs trout park

Gwen loves to fish, but lacks much of an attention span, so this place was perfect. In little to no time, we'd eaten some lunch and caught two rainbow trout. The first one Gwen caught was 1.5 pounds, but the second, a monster of a trout, was 6 pounds. She caught the first on her little SpongeBob rod and the huge lunker on her cane pole that I made out of river cane from a hiking trip in Arkansas last year.

1.5 lb rainbow trout

1.5 lb rainbow trout

6 lb rainbow trout

6lb rainbow trout

It was a great place to take a kid fishing. You're guaranteed to catch something and fairly quick. mountain springs trout park

gwen and abby

We had so much fish that we traded one huge fillet with a neighbor for a bottle of wine and grilled the second. Putting the smaller fish in the freezer for later. I grilled the fillet with olive oil, salt, pepper, rosemary, thyme, garlic, onion, shallots and lemon. Gwen loved it. My wife Abby even tried it and she hates fish more than anyone I've ever known.

one large trout fillet, grilling

grilled trout

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Kayak, James River/Springfield Lake 9-19-2012

James River/Springfield Lake 9-19-2012

A three mile evening paddle on the James River/Springfield Lake.

James River/Springfield Lake 9-19-2012

James River/Springfield Lake 9-19-2012

The new spray skirt/splash guard worked as designed. It's not as pretty as the open cockpit, but it kept me dry and warm, out of the cool breeze coming off the water. It should be quite helpful when on some late fall and winter trips this year.

James River/Springfield Lake 9-19-2012

James River/Springfield Lake 9-19-2012

James River/Springfield Lake 9-19-2012

Saw lots of coots, buzzards, herons, snowy egrets and kingfishers, as well as a large doe deer drinking by the river's edge. She checked me out for a bit and nonchalantly walked up into the woods and out of sight. Also heard an owl hooting several times. It stopped when I came close to the point where the sounds originated.

James River/Springfield Lake 9-19-2012

James River/Springfield Lake 9-19-2012

James River/Springfield Lake 9-19-2012

James River/Springfield Lake 9-19-2012

James River/Springfield Lake 9-19-2012

James River/Springfield Lake 9-19-2012

A nice quiet evening on the water. Saw a couple of other kayaks on the water. One with a fisherman pulling a good size bass out as I passed him. Also saw and met two teams of racing canoeists. Nice people, they had some pretty neat boats, capable of fairly high speed for a paddle craft.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Sailing Stockton Lake, 9-15-2012

Saturday morning I loaded the outrigger canoe in the rain and headed up to Stockton Lake to meet a few people to sail and camp for the weekend. Unfortunately, the weather didn't cooperate and the guys that had gotten up there on Friday had called it and gone home by the time I got there Saturday morning. I messed around for a couple of hours, waiting for the rain to let off enough to get on the water. About 1pm, if finally cleared. I prepped the boat and got on the water around 2:00.

Sailing Stockton Lake, Missouri, 9-15-2012

Sailing Stockton Lake, Missouri, 9-15-2012

Sailing Stockton Lake, Missouri, 9-15-2012

I sailed out of Orleans Trail Marina, tacking my way upwind and out of the long narrow cove. Then hung a right and out towards the two larger islands in the lake.

Sailing Stockton Lake, Missouri, 9-15-2012

Sailing Stockton Lake, Missouri, 9-15-2012

Sailing Stockton Lake, Missouri, 9-15-2012

I saw four other sailboats, all larger production boats. There were also a few fishing boats racing about.

Sailing Stockton Lake, Missouri, 9-15-2012

Sailing Stockton Lake, Missouri, 9-15-2012

Sailing Stockton Lake, Missouri, 9-15-2012

With the weather threatening to go south on me again, I called it and headed back to town. Opting to sleep in my bed, rather than my car. Still had a lot of fun, though. Hopefully things will be better, weather-wise, for my upcoming trip to Oklahoma and Lake Eufaula, in October.

Sailing Stockton Lake, Missouri, 9-15-2012

Sailing Stockton Lake, Missouri, 9-15-2012

Sailing Stockton Lake, Missouri, 9-15-2012

Sailing Stockton Lake, Missouri, 9-15-2012

The Sailor's Ditty Bag

Sailor's Ditty Bag, nearly finished. Needs to be monogrammed.

Often the first project given to a new sailmaker's apprentice was the sailor's ditty bag. It covers a lot of the same sewing technique and craft of working a full size piece of canvass. I'm wanting to learn to sew my own sails. Rather than just jump right in and ruin a perfectly good canvas tarp, I'm opting to learn at a smaller level, on smaller projects to mess up. This being the first of them.

Working from The Sailor's Ditty Bag by Frank Rosenow, The Arts of the Sailor by Hervey Garrett Smith and photos found online, I sketched out the cutting dimensions onto a yard of olive green cotton duck canvas. This isn't quite a traditional ditty bag. I liked the olive fabric better than the off white and I simplified the lanyard a bit.

Just got this in the mail. Should come in handy with the project i started last night and learning to sew my own sails.

A couple recent purchases - "Pete Culler On Wooden Boats", a collection of writing by Pete Culler and "The Arts of the Sailor" by Hervey Garrett Smith

Ditty Bag Start

I next cut out the pieces with my wife's fabric scissors and stitched an overlapping vertical seam. Then rolled down the top edge and sewed that seam and then sewed the bottom on. The hard part was the seven grommet eyelets, I turned the bag inside-out and sewed six along the top and one on the bottom to take the lanyard toggle. The toggle I cut from a piece of hardwood that I carved a point onto during a camp trip back in the mid 90s. The point of which, I cut off to make a wooden fid from later. The lanyard, not a traditional one, I made from some cheap line I had in the garage. I'll likely redo it later with some three strand cotton rope.

Sailor's Ditty Bag Progress

Sailor's Ditty Bag Progress

got the bottom on

finally got to use one of my rigging knives for something other than staring at it.

All that's left to do, is monogram my initials onto it. I'm still undecided if I'll go cursive or sans serif. I'll post again when I figure it out.