New Bedford

Provincetown to New Bedford is not a particularly long run, just over 50 miles, but passage through the Cape Cod Canal requires a bit of timing to match transiting the canal with the currents, which can be around 4-5 kts at certain times, and a 5 kt current means we make about a knot and a half over the ground, equivalent to a slow walk. Working the timing of the slack tide backwards against our travel time, I determined a departure time of 0530 would be the latest we could leave and be able to transit the canal with favorable currents.  So we lifted the dink, set the alarm and hit the rack. Oh dark-thirty comes early.  Our departure from Provincetown went smoothly, as did the transit of the Canal. We timed the tides perfectly, exiting the Canal into Buzzard’s Bay at slack, and picking up a bit of current boost down the bay and up into New Bedford.

New Bedford is a fishing port, home of a sizable fleet, as well as much of the supporting businesses.  One of those suppliers, Niemiec Marine happens to be one of the parts sources for some of the engine parts that we stock in spare parts, so a call to Niemiec confirmed that they had in stock the spares I needed to replenish, and also snagged us a complimentary slip for the night. A very good turn of events since gale force winds were predicted overnight, and the marina stay would provide adequate protection if things got nasty- which they did not.  We took advantage of our early arrival to take the bikes to the grocery to pick up some provisions, and see a bit of New Bedford- actually Fairhaven which lies on the east side of Pope’s Island where the marina is located. It’s a working town, not much charm, but plenty of supplies. A good place to go if you’re looking for parts or repairs. Niemiec Marine is just adjacent to the Marina, very convenient, and the folks there are quite accommodating.

The weather forecast was unsettled as was the weather, but we decided to head out. Seas were reported to be 5-7 ft, but with a long period. Conditions were pretty much as predicted, with at least 6 ft swells, but not uncomfortable. We headed for Newport, about 35 miles, a long enough run in the conditions we had. We arrived at Newport about 3PM, and were able to pick up a mooring in Newport Harbor, remarkable since the Newport Boat show is in progress, so we’ll stay and go to the boat show since we’re here and have a mooring that’s so convenient to the show.

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