Sunday, July 31, 2011

Multnomah Channel - July 2011

Multnomah Channel wanders 20 miles from the Willamette River on the upstream end to the Columbia River at St. Helens separating Sauvie Island from mainland Oregon on the Columbia River. Navigation is easy with >20ft depths in most places.

We took a short cruise about two-thirds of the way to St. Helens to visit a couple of marine parks. The entrance to the channel is about 10 miles from the marina. Much of the upper channel is developed with marinas and houseboat moorages.

Our first stop at Coon Island Marine Park found an empty 800 ft. concrete dock. A composting toilet and a few picnic tables are available there but we couldn't get near them due to clouds of hungry mosquitoes blocking the path.

We headed back the second day spending the night at Hadley's Landing, just a few miles before reentering the Willamette. Here we found a few people fishing, a couple of other boats using the large dock, and lots more mosquitoes. Across the channel is a small boat repair facility and other activity making it an interesting place to explore on the dinghy.

Returning to the marina on day three, we had a good light-air sail from the Multnomah Channel entrance to Kelly Point where the Willamette rejoins the Columbia River.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

New Dodger

I always liked the look and quality of Iverson Design dodgers and now we've finally sprung for one. To look at them, you'd think they're the most expensive ones around but the reality is that they're priced similar to other shops and less expensive than some. Best of all, THEY SHOW UP and they get the job done quickly. Our project included the dodger, sailcover, and several other items.

We chose the darkest blue Sunbrella. The lighter color on the previous dodger had its advantages and looked ok but showed dirt badly. The windows on the new dodger are of Makrolon, a semi-rigid plastic that refuses to wrinkle making the windows seem like glass. We also ordered window covers to protect them from the caustic bird crap that flies around the marina.

The project had two steps. At the boat on the first day, after discussion about the design, the frame is fabricated using equipment on the Iverson truck. The new frame is installed and patterns are made using a special plastic sheet material. With the patterns in place on the frame, you can see exactly what the dodger will look like before any Sunbrella is put to the knife and needle. Eight days later was install day and the project completed. They're by far the most efficient canvas shop I've ever dealt with.

We love the new dodger and recommend Iversons Design highly.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

BBQ Work Table

I wanted a little work table that could be mounted on the rail next to the BBQ. We use the BBQ a lot so it will get plenty of use.
BBQ Table BBQ Table
The top is cut from 3/4" Starboard purchased at TAP Plastics. I found the mount at a boater swap meet a few years ago, and the fiddles were cut from some scrap teak.

Coming Home

After four years away, Summer Place was moved from Olympia to Portland, OR in early April and now calls the Columbia River home. We're moored at Salpare Bay Marina in Portland while waiting for a slip at Kalama Marina, located just seven miles from home.b44f[1]
I never thought I'd make a move back to the river but grew weary of the 85 mile drive to Olympia. With the boat located just a few miles from home, afternoon daysails are a possibility along with plenty of wind and numerous close cruising destinations.

We'll see how it goes