September 24, 2007

Ship's Log - Basin Harbor


Marsha Conover has been a member of LCMM since 2000. She volunteered on construction of Lois McClure 2001-2004 and then volunteered as Interpreter. She joined the crew in 2004 at Plattsburgh and Port Henry and on the 2005 Grand Journey for Port Washington to Albany.

Currently, she enjoys the Community Rowing Club and resides in Bath, ME where she is the Administrative Assistant for Maine's First Ship, a non- profit dedicated to preserving the history of the 1607 Popham Colony and reconstruction of the pinnace VIRGINIA.

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Photo by Marsha Conover
Crown Point Anchorage

Sunday evening, September 23rd 2007

Crown Point, our last evening on board. We are anchored near the Champlain Bridge. In the late afternoon sunshine, flocks of Commerants fly over head. We've had a very relaxing day of travel from Whitehall. Now the crew turns their attention to preparing for our arrival home tomorrow. Erick goes on ahead to Basin Harbor to make room for us at the dock. On board all the nooks and crannies, which hid our current lifestyle so well, must now be cleaned out. The crew begins packing. Barb sets me up doing inventory of the Ship's Store while she works on the nacho dips and chili we'll be having for dinner tonight.

Dinner is one of my favorite activities on board. Not just because the food is so good, but because it is a time when everyone can come together, relax and share his or her thoughts. We tell stories, laugh and unwind. And for a crew that has been aboard this ship for 3 months with one more day of travel ahead, the atmosphere is euphoric. A lot of memories have been made here this summer.

Photo by Kerry Batdorf
Dinner Time

Up on deck a beautiful evening with nearly full moon. So peaceful and quiet unlike being tied to the dock with bright lights and the noise of traffic. The guys all sleep up on deck so I have the cargo area all to myself. I like to set my cot up near the stairway and feel the cool air drift down. Being on the lake I can feel the subtle sway of the boat lulling me to sleep.

Monday, September 24th, 2007

I awake to the quiet sounds and aroma of Kathleen brewing coffee. No rush this a.m. No more visitors or school groups coming at 9 a.m. Not far to travel today.

Just before getting underway we have our customary meeting where Roger will go over our route and plans for the day. Art shares with us this day in 1863 from Theodore Bartley's Journal. He had tied up in St. John to take on a load of Barley. Instead of a bright moon he witnessed the Aurora Borealis.

Our next stop is a brief one at Westport to pump out all the holding tanks. I'm rushing to get the lunch dishes done before this happens. Another sign the trip is coming to an end. The Westport Marina offers this at no charge, another gracious generosity bestowed to the Lois McClure. We pass several well wishers out enjoying the Lake.

Photo by Barbara Batdorf
Philadelphia II at Basin Harbor Mooring

As we approach Basin Harbor the Philadelphia II sits anchored at a mooring. What a photo opportunity! Erick has spent the morning moving her from the dock so we could tie up. Everyone is very anxious to be home, except me, as I have only been on board for 6 days and do not want the trip to end.

So, at 2:30 here we are, but not quite ready to disembark. Just a few small details remain. The Churchill must be detached from our hip and moved to a mooring. Lois needs to be eased into the standing dock and secured. The moveable dock needs to be moved to her port side. Philadelphia II has to be brought back in from the mooring and moved to the other side of the dock across from Lois. After just a little more tweaking, handled with the usual enthusiasm and finesse, the crew and staff of LCMM are finally able to put the gangway in place. It is now 4:30 and we are just in time for our Welcome Home Party!

Although times like these are always bittersweet, everyone is already thinking about next year.

Until then,

Phone: 802-475-2022