Farewell, New England Sailing Season 2012

While some lucky New England sailors seem to be able to squeeze their sailing season until practically Thanksgiving, these days I find that youth soccer increasingly trumps sailing the further we get from Labor Day. And yet, though my autumn is hardly as sailing-filled as my August, in most years I’ve found that one of my favorite sails of the season is the often-brisk delivery from Camden to Rockport, where Time Enough is de-rigged and hauled to the boatyard for the winter. This is hardly the longest sail of the year, but something about being virtually alone out on the bay, with the fall colors beginning to show on the Camden hills but still a week or two away from peaking, is a special sort of pilgrimage for me. Instead of lamenting the end of the sailing season, hauling day is usually a pleasant blend of reflecting on adventures past and projects future.

There are plenty of days, especially in mid-winter, where I envy those sailors who get to use their boats year-round. But for one October day each year, I’m perfectly content not to trade places with them.