With two or three feet of snow from the weekend blizzard still on the ground, the forecast called for temps well above freezing, but with increasing, gusty winds. I’d been sick for weeks, unable to get-out, and now that I felt mostly better, I watched the weather closely for a break. When I looked-out at the harbor in the morning and saw calm water, I figured this was it. It took forever to get our gear together, and by mid-morning when we launched, the winds were picking-up from the west. So- a perfect day to head over toward Whitmore Neck.
We drifted beneath the pier and made our way through the mooring field off Clam City. Most of the lobster boats had heeded the forecast and stayed-in. High tide wasn’t for a couple of hours, but it had already come-in higher than it often does, so we took advantage of it, poking into spots we usually don’t go.
I could feel the weeks of inaction in me, a residual sluggishness, so we took it easy, meandering here and there, content just to be on the water, marveling at the ice and snow. At Dow Ledge, we surprised a fox, who swam to shore.
Wildlife sightings such as that are a gift, and already, I thought, if we didn't even go further, I was glad we'd made it out. Seeing the snow-capped rocks and paddling among ice floes only added to the feeling and kept us moving along shore to see what would come next.
We headed-up Hatch Cove, but unsurprisingly, were stopped by ice just past the bridge.
We had no particular plans, so followed the east shore out, contemplating the mysteries of the Hatch Cove moai.
The mysteries were not revealed to us, so we kept-on, checking-out the small rustic cabins around Whitmore Neck, closed-up for the winter, slaloming between rocks and ice floes along the shore.
Out at Sheep Island, we found the wind we'd been avoiding near shore.
We arrived at the beach at high tide, with barely room for us and our boats. But the rocks were out of the wind, warmed by the sun, and we had a nice lunch break. The wind slowed us some on our return, especially back in the Thorofare, but back in town you would have never known it.