Jupiter’s Way

The Adventures of Motor Vessel Jupiter and Her Crew

Spring Training

Spring training for baseball teams includes a combination of practices and exhibitions facilitating a cruel cycle of promotions and relegations necessary to build a team able to sail through the season.

Sidney

Jupiter’s crew is engaged in their own spring training manifested by remembering mechanical sequences, deploying new systems, locating items stowed in the fall but now forgotten, and preparing the vessel to a standard good enough to score in ports and passes.

Daniel of Philbrook’s Boatyard – Jupiter’s winter season Head Coach.

Daniel, Jupiter’s Service Manager, returns the keys, and like a good T-ball coach, is eager to show how much our kid has grown in his care—which is plenty. Two short days with technicians has to be enough coaching as we need to cross the US Border and tie-up at Bellingham to take delivery of a new tender and a ship-load of ship’s stores.

Bellingham

We say farewell to our old tender, IO, which has served us well but is tired, grey, and a bit flaccid as we lower her from her berth on the flybridge for the last time. Jupiter’s new satellite, Callisto, fits into Io’s bunk with little adjustment, ready for the signmaker to apply numbers and letters proving provenance and payment of state taxes.

Now comes the cargo: new towels, shoes and socks, medical supplies, kayak paddles and self-rescue floats, clothes for boats, reading glasses, drinking glasses, personal locator beacons for life vests – for crew and guests, mixing bowls, toilet rolls, books and cookbooks, 2024 decals validating US Customs registration, rescue beacon registration, Washington State registration, and Vessel Safety Check approbation, two pounds of secret-recipe granola, defibrillator batteries, canned mackerel from the Bay of Biscay, stationery, printer cartridges, a circular “catch-as catch-can” crab trap, fuel filters, three types of water filters, three types of shampoo, body wash, cream and sunscreens, unguents and ointments, fresh flags and bright burgees, and 200 floating feet of line for the tender, charging cords, laundry-detergent hoards and chopping boards, chamoises in blue and tan, a heating fan, magic markers, anchor-chain markers, and one new telescoping boat hook.

We visit the Saturday Farmer’s Market and purchase fresh veggies, fresh eggs, fresh bread and flowers. The boat begins to warm and feel like home.

The crew is ready for the game and exhausted from the practice.

Garrison Bay

Like managers studying the attributes of their players, we are testing our new systems and learning their strengths and weaknesses. The barbecue has a sprained wire and is out for three innings. The new tender, Callisto, planes easily but plows into a curve ball if not trimmed just so.

Time on anchor is essential to fully analyze capabilities. We deploy our ground tackle at Garrison Bay, site of the infamous 1859 Pig War. Other pre-season boaters are warming-up skills, and known mariners and friends glide into the same bay and anchor nearby. We are delighted to reunite and discover their game plans.

Roche Harbor

Soon we are suiting up for the first exhibition at Roche Harbor where sixty vintage and new Grand Banks yachts are assembled at the annual Puget Sound Rendezvous. We enjoy interesting speakers, examining other vessels, meeting salts and sailors, and visiting with friends. Fashions in electrical and electronic systems, plumbing, weather forecasting, even knot tying and line handling changes over time, and innovation continues to influence the way we cruise.

The annual rendezvous of the Puget Sound Grand Banks Owners Association at Roche Harbor annually attracts scores of boats.

After the last inning at Roche, Jupiter crosses back into Canadian waters headed for Vancouver and ready for the season.

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