Saturday, December 24, 2011

Merry Christmas from the Schooner Ardelle!

Merry Christmas from Captain and Crew!

Three greats...the schooner Lannon, Fame of Salem and the Ardelle!

Friday, December 23, 2011

Double Eagle Crosses the Border from Manchester

Double Eagle in the basin
As usual, we were happy to have Jocelyn Marine from Newburyport, Mass. help us out on Wednesday getting the Double Eagle into the yard for some winter work.  Over the years, Jocelyn has brought many boats into the yard  - and sometimes the condition in our swamp make things challenging for them to get back out. This time, however, a quick two-day freeze just before Double Eagle arrived allowed them to back right in and drive right out without the assistance of our good old 1942 ex-military/retired No. 7 firetruck from Cumberland, ME that has on occasion had to drag truck, trailer and boat out of the muck.  Thanks – Jocelyn – for all the great service here and good times!
HArold by the waters edge

Jocelyn Does a Great Job Hauling Boats!

Jocelyn Hauls the Boat from the Town Ramp

Coming up Burnham Court

Nice turn!

Making room for the Double Eagle

Passing by the front yard

"Chuckies" fence is untouched

Not a hitch.

No problems.

In the yard for winter work.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

A Few Photos and the Double Eagle is Coming In

We loved the Christmas Tree on the schooner Ardelle last year!

A lot of hard work in the cold last year

That is a stretch!

Harold's best pair of Carhartt overalls.
Sailing past the old paint factory in Gloucester
Well, we just decided to be shamelessly commercial and say it is still not too late to buy some trunnels as Christmas gifts so feel free to stop by or check it out online.  Tomorrow Harold will be bringing the Dougle Eagle across Ipswich Bay and up the Essex River where it will be in the yard for winter work. 

Monday, December 19, 2011

A Beal Island Lobster Boat Comes to the Yard

Chad Gadbois brought in his Beal Island lobster boat on Saturday

We like how it looks against the barn!

The yard on a cold December day.

A nice shot of Chad's lobster boat - a work in progess!

Chad Gadbois' lobster boat arrived on Saturday and we are giving her a good look over before we start working on her more. In the words of famed Maine boatbuilder Ralph Stanley "She is worse than we hoped but not so much worse than we expected." Chad is from Beverly by way of Maine where his family comes from. We know that he can do just about anything and has been a huge help to us during the building of the Ardelle. We look forward to seeing what he does with this old girl! He dreams of cruising and fishing in her with his kids and something about this boat and Chad reminds Harold of his old Friendship Sloop Chrissy.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Last Sail of 2011 on the Ardelle

Our winter resident harbor seal in the Essex River.

Capt. Ted Marshall of Essex.

Frostbite sailing at its best!

Harold, Susan and Cathy on the bow.
We have had a lot of "last sails" since the Ardelle left Gloucester in late October but we finally did have our officialy last sail yesterday afternoon. After some dock repairs, the Ardelle had been in the basin on a mooring for part of late November and early December as we waited for a high enough tide to bring her into the creek. It was fun for the folks driving over the bridge or walking past to look and see the Ardelle in the basin but we could not keep her there all winter with the ice and currents. So, the tide and time was right midday yesterday to bring her the few yards into the creek for the last time this year. We just had to have one last sail down river before bringing her in.  In Essex, people are pretty good when there is a dock call as folks from Essex understand that the tide does not we made the call to go out for a sail at 11 a.m. and within 10 minutes we had a hearty crew who wanted to go along. We returned by 1 p.m. as the tide was at its peak high so we could get the Ardelle easily into the creek. It was a cold but refreshing sail out near Hog Island with beautiful bird and marine life, too, including a harbor seal that likes to winter in the river. The Ardelle is tied up in the creek now and will have her first winter there... lets hope it goes well and the ice is not too thick! Thanks also to Elinor and Mike "Doc" Dyer for the great photos of the Ardelle in the creek posted this week on the amazing blog Good Morning Gloucester.

Yesterday really was the last sail of 2011.

Taking the Ardelle down river for one last sail. Bruce Slifer pictured here.

Bruce Slifer on the Essex River.

Harold, Capt. Ted Marshall of Essex, and Charles "Chuckie" Burnham.

Kathy Slifer and Maria Burnham. Yes, it really is winter in New England.

Our friend had her first sail ever yesterday!

Daisy, always a member of the crew!

Emma, Kathy and Maria

Emma is Maria's friend from their university days and was visiting from Los Angeles. We salute you Emma for being such a hearty sailor!

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Launching the new Gundalow in the Piscataqua River

The new Gundalow along the Piscataqua river in Portsmouth, N.H.

Gundalow looks ready to launch

This vessel is nearly 65--feet long

Starting to move into the river

Has to be christened first

Shipwright and builder Paul Rollins left and Executive Director of the Gundalow Company Molly Bolster. Great job you all!

Harold watches the Gundalow launch.

Another shot of the Gundalow
A great scene
We had a great day yesterday with Barry O'Brien and Jeff Lane at the launch of the new Gundalow in Portsmouth, N.H. called "Piscataqua" built by shipwright Paul Rollins of York, Maine.  Some of you may remember in 2007 and 2008 when Harold was involved with the Gundalow Company and worked on the preliminary designs for this vessel. Although Harold moved on to other projects, we think that Paul Rollins, Nate Piper, Molly Bolster and the folks in Portsmouth and at the Gundalow company have a lot to be proud of and they did a beautiful job building the new vessel. We think the boat is well suited to its mission and we are looking forward to seeing them up and down the Piscataqua River next spring and hope to visit them in the Ardelle. Thanks Barry O'Brien for the photos!