What a difference a year makes. Last year we kept Sea Shadow on a trailer and launched at different sites in our area. Coordinating the outings was not easy and sometimes we were hard pressed to come up with a full crew. This year the boat is kept on a dolly at the Waupoos Marina and we have two outings each week. Typically 10 to 15 people show up each time, and Sea Shadow will leave the dock 3 to 4 times with a different crew. On Sundays we row 10K around Waupoos Island, trying to beat our previous time. This year also saw a growing interest from the women, their numbers now equal the men and keep increasing. The other development was the very successful change-over to wooden oars from the carbon fibre.
In July we were invited to Lake Champlain for two days of racing at the Lake Champlain Maritime Museum. They put on an outstanding regatta with five St Ayles in attendance, the largest North American gathering to date. The SCR website and the North American St Ayles Association websites both had excellent articles on the event.
With both the interest and the number of participants growing, there was only one way to meet the demand, and that was to build a second boat. Work got started a few weeks ago with the fabrication of the stems and setting up the building frame and molds. Another set of wooden oars are nearing completion and might be ready in time for sea trials before this season ends. Today we picked up the planking kit and the lumber for the inner and outer keels. Tomorrow we will cut out the planks and clean them up in preparation for gluing. In another week week we’ll be hanging planks.
We’re all looking forward to next year with two Canadian boats on the water.