We were pretty excited to sail out and visit the painted rocks – one of the big reasons we wanted to sail the south shore of Lake Superior, rather than going back through the Canadian side. But first, we had to get out of the Grand Marais harbor. Easier said than done.
We got ready to leave around 10 a.m. Made a plan on how to pull away safely from the dock. But the winds were gusting to 20 mph and we couldn’t get the boat away from the dock for the life of us. When the gusts slowed, we tried again with me at the wheel. Probably not the right decision. We got off the dock but I ended up putting the keel into 5 foot sand. Chuck jumped onboard and he easily backed us off the sand and tucked us back on the dock. Two wonderful fisherman came over and helped us move the boat farther down the dock so we wouldn’t be taking off in the shallow water. Thank you guys!
We waited around until about 2 p.m. and the wind shifted slightly which reduced the speed under 10 mph. We went. Pulled the lines, I drove away, slammed the dingy into a pole on the dock, but I got away with Chuck jumping onto the boat! Whoo wee, that was one of the most adrenaline-packed times of my life! Get us out of there so we can sail!
After leaving the breakwater, we turned west to the Painted Rocks and had a fabulous sail in all of the wind that was so horrible just minutes before! We sailed by huge sand dunes and the Au Sable Point light.
When we rounded the point, we started to see different colored rock formations and changed course to go more into the bay to get a closer look. Wow, what a great experience. If you ever get to Munising, Michigan we both would recommend getting on a tourist boat and seeing the Painted Rocks – the first National Seashore in America!
We crossed the channel that goes south into Munising and decided to take a chance and stay in Trout Harbor on the north end of Grand Island. We would be exposed to the big lake to the North but the winds predicted for all night at the next day were South, Southwest. It was a fabulous, quiet anchorage which reminded us of the Apostle Islands.