Fish on the captain screams, the crew finally comes alive, after two days of sleep deprivation and/or sea sickness in some cases. There’s a big bull mahi on the line, the sea state is finally starting to calm down a bit, everyone seems to be getting into the groove of their watches, things are starting to come together for the makings of a great passage. We are sailing along with a full main, genoa, and stay sail at 12.5 knots even seeing 14s occasionally, riding the current of the Gulf stream. We enjoy a fresh mahi dinner that evening and watch as the sun sets into the sea. The sky full of its magnificent stars finally breaks through the rain clouds that night and the crew rest peacefully.
As dawn approaches we are greeted by dolphins, and as the morning progresses a group of pilot whales. We are still sailing around 12.5 knots making great time, we have some mouth watering ceviche the captain has whipped up for us, for lunch. As the day progresses, the wind dies, so we decided to motor sail. Then we come across some more dolphins playing and riding the bow like they do. An then off in the distance a spout of mist comes rising out of the water, then there is another, there is a group of humpbacks feeding with the dolphins. So we slow down, cut the engines and try to sail up on the humpbacks. This process goes on for 30-40 minutes or so and at one point we are completely stopped with 20-30 dolphins just swimming and playing around the boat, just hanging out with us. As inquisitive as we are watching them, they watch us too! At this point we can see humpbacks all around us in the distance some even breaching. Then all of a sudden one of the crew yells “whale right back here “ and right behind us literally 10 feet away a humpback surfaces behind the yacht. We hang out for a bit more with the dolphins and humpbacks enthralled with there existence. We motor sail away, slowly the dolphins start to swim away and then we come up on a large leatherback turtle. What a end to a nature filled day.
We sail thru the night and the next morning into the east river, by the statute of liberty, one of the crews fiancé is on the ferry dock so we sail up to the ferry dock with a cargo ship to our starboard side and a sea plane fires up his engines and takes off 20 yards away from us to port giving us quite a scare. Boat traffic this particular weekend is busy. We sail thru Manhattan and arrive at Hells Gate right at slack tide. Pass Governors Island, pass Richers prison, the UN building and by La Guardia as planes pass above our mast. Arrive in Port Jefferson a day early after leaving a half a day late. Arriving to a cheer squad, (the owners family) holding up signs, cheering, hooting and hollering and ready with alcoholic beverages in hand, as nature paints a beautiful sunset in the background. The makings of a great passage indeed, All made possible by the beautiful Hylas 56 yacht.