Our plan Wednesday was to find some Ice for the icebox, walk the old harbor town and then take a longer hike out to the North light house in the afternoon. Once again we got going slowly and finally we dinghied over to the boat basin and walked off into the old harbor town. Situated on the Atlantic side of Block Island, the old harbor is small with dockage for 10 or 12 fishing boats, some charter fishing spots and a handful of mooring balls along with the ferry terminal. Ferries seem to come into the island from every which way and the oddity here is that you have to back onto the ferry, slow loading but easy unloading. Many of the goods for the island come in on pallets set on the ferry, so the first thing that happened was a small fleet of forklifts fired up and got the pallets off and out of the way before the cars came off. Good thinking on their part.

Enjoying the sunny warm day a bit too much, we stalled our walk through the old harbor and didn’t make it back to the dinghy until after 1:30pm, bought ice and headed out to the boat for some lunch. Lunch over, we poked our head out and the afternoon thunderstorms had us second guessing our 6 mile hike out to the lighthouse and back. We himmed and hawed, stalled and thought, eventually Jennifer said “we’re not made of sugar, lets go!” So off we went. It was a great walk up the island road past granite stone fences and cabin after cabin. Big houses, old houses, farms and tiny cabins. You name it, it was along this road.

Eventually we dropped down a hill and then walked along Sachem Pond before heading out the beach to the light house. Someone had placed what I thought was an old iron chair out in the pond but as we got closer I realized it was a piece of art, a fish jumping out of the water with the lighthouse in the background, cool!

The road ends a good half mile from the light house and we slogged on through the sand to get up close and take a few pictures. While sitting there we realized that the thunder shower that looked like it was heading East wasn’t, that it was stretching out towards us from the mainland. With a ton of hope we set out back towards the boat but we didn’t make it more than 20 minutes before the rain started coming down, and wouldn’t you know it, we didn’t melt. Absolutely soaked by the time we got back to the dinghy and out to Libra, but it was well worth the hike and exploration of the island before we leave tomorrow for Fishers Island and Mystic, Connecticut.

Thursday morning dawned grey with what looked like fog threatening to come in, but no fog was in the forecast... We hailed the town pump-out boat to come empty our tank before we left and once he arrived and made quick work of our 6 gallon tank we learned that many of the large boats that come here have over 300 gallon holding tanks and that the kids that run the pump-out boats in the busy season make over $900/day on tips! People feel so bad about having some kid come out and pump out their crap (something the town does for free) that they tip the heck out of ‘em! America.

So, soon we headed out of the Great Salt Pond into the Greater Salt Pond and with a good 5 to 7 miles of visibility found our compass course for the East end of Fishers Island and the Watch Hill Passage and chugged along under motor in the light hazy conditions. Once we picked up the Rhode Island Shore and had lost Block Island behind us the mist began to thicken and very quickly became some good thick fog. We broke out the GPS cord and hooked it up to the computer for our chart program and with Jennifer on the bow looking for fishing boats and marks we slowly motored through the Passage. Slowly motored is relative because even at half throttle we were still doing 5 to 6 knots over the bottom with the incoming tide.

Eventually we found the passage and once through navigated our way buoy to buoy until we found the East Harbor on the back side of Fishers Island. We dropped the hook in 10’ of water and had some lunch while the fog continued to roll over the island and out into Fishers Sound. But it didn’t take long for the sun to burn through and with our ever expanding view of Fishers Sound we relaxed the afternoon away reading in the cockpit with Jennifer even taking some time to sunbathe on the deck. There isn’t much for going ashore here in East Harbor, only some below high water beach and some very small rock islands. But it’s a quiet anchorage with protection from everything but a strong Northerly so before we spend a weekend in the busy port of Mystic we thought a nice quiet anchorage at the end of Fishers Island was in order, the last piece of New York we’ll see on our voyage up the East Coast.