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Author Topic:   Proposed Adventure: Grand Haven, MI to Milwaukee, WI
K Albus posted 02-24-2009 01:38 PM ET (US)   Profile for K Albus   Send Email to K Albus  
Is anybody interested in making a run from Grand Haven, Michigan to Milwaukee, Wisconsin in June 2009?

My proposal: Leave Grand Haven at about 10:00 a.m. on Saturday, June 13, 2009. It should take about three to four hours to get to Milwaukee. In Milwaukee, transient slips can be rented at McKinley Marina ( http://www.county.milwaukee.gov/BoatingampMcKinleyMa9139.htm ). Within short walking distance from McKinley Marina is Brady Street, an area with numerous restaurants and shops ( http://www.bradyst.com/index.html ). It also appears that there are at least a few restaurants and/or bars on the Milwaukee River (See, e.g., http://www.cafevecchio.com/riverwalkboat/tours/ ). The plan would be to depart from Milwaukee on Sunday around noon, with the intention of returning to Grand Haven by 5:00 p.m.

Map of area: http://maps.google.com/maps?f=q&source=s_q&hl=en&geocode=&q=McKinley+ Marina&sll=42.632011,-83.460455&sspn=0.007009,0.013819&g=8984+Haymarket+ St,+White+Lake,+MI+48386&ie=UTF8&ll=43.050294,-87.888308&spn=0.013924,0. 027637&t=h&z=15


Coincidentally, this appears to be the widest spot in which to make an east-west crossing of Lake Michigan.

If the weather is bad on June 13, the trip would be rescheduled to June 20.

K Albus posted 02-24-2009 02:07 PM ET (US)     Profile for K Albus  Send Email to K Albus     
Here's a link to a webpage with maps of the Milwaukee Riverwalk, an area with a number of restaurants and other attractions: http://www.mkedcd.org/riverwalk/
fishgutz posted 02-24-2009 02:26 PM ET (US)     Profile for fishgutz  Send Email to fishgutz     
Milwaukee Ale House. Good food, good beer, good entertainment. Nice free dock space.

Milwaukee Public Market is good for local fare and people watching.

Rock Bottom brewery is good.

Lucille's Piano bar is a RIOT.

Safehouse is fun. Milwaukee Press Club is a nice chunk of history.

It's a heck of a walk up the bluff to Brady street.

I miss our summer cruises up the Milwaukee River.

prj posted 02-24-2009 02:44 PM ET (US)     Profile for prj  Send Email to prj     
I'd be more than happy to host a bit of a tour on this side of the pond. I live and keep my Outrage-18 in Milwaukee and have a bit of local knowledge about not only the waterways, but the dining/drinking establishments and overnight accommodations if you'd be interested.

I've already tentatively booked Sunday June 14th for a Brewer's game (just up the Menomonee River), so I'm available on the Saturday of proposed arrival:

http://maps.google.com/maps?hl=en&ie=UTF8&ll=43.030126,-87.957916&spn=0. 025034,0.045533&t=h&z=15

I've also booked a boat camping trip at Willow Flowage on the following weekend:

http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3192/2692915676_35070099f4_b.jpg

So I wouldn't be able to manage the raincheck option, but would certainly download all the info you'd need to find a quality beer and dinner here in Milwaukee.

K Albus posted 02-24-2009 02:52 PM ET (US)     Profile for K Albus  Send Email to K Albus     
prj, that sounds great. I'm thinking that upon arrival in Milwaukee we'll check into the marina. We'll probably need at least a short break from the boats after a four hour trip. After that, we could take a tour up the Milwaukee River during daylight, with a stop for lunch. Then back to the marina, with dinner and cocktails somewhere on Brady Street in the evening. Breakfast and showers on Sunday morning, and then shove off by noon.

If I can convince anybody else to come along, I'd be happy to have a tour guide for the day.

Buckda posted 02-24-2009 03:59 PM ET (US)     Profile for Buckda  Send Email to Buckda     
I'm interested in this; however, I suggest coming to Grand Haven/Spring lake on Friday night and a call time to leave the dock much earlier than 10:00 AM. I recommend moving out no later than 7 or 8 AM to avoid potential rough seas, as you'll be pounding almost directly into the head seas (WNW Winds are predominant).

Grand Haven is one of the busiest private vessel ports on Michigan's Lake Michigan coast. There will be a lot of fishermen/charters going out early and boat traffic out in the lake near the pierhead to about 3 or 4 miles out that early in the season. After about 3-4 miles, the depth drops off (over 300 ft), and you'll have fewer fishermen out that deep that early in the summer.

Think we could get quite a few guys to consider this if the weather is decent. If it's bad, we can also divert and stay along the coast and do Muskegon/Holland for overnights. June can be "iffy" on Lake Michigan. August and early September are the best bet for calm conditions.

K Albus posted 02-24-2009 04:23 PM ET (US)     Profile for K Albus  Send Email to K Albus     
The historical data from the closest NOAA buoy indicates that June and July are the calmest months, as far as waves go, on Lake Michigan. See: http://www.ndbc.noaa.gov/images/climplot/45007_wh.jpg and http://www.ndbc.noaa.gov/station_page.php?station=45007

I have no problem with leaving earlier on Saturday morning. However, I picked 10:00 a.m. as the departure time so that people from the Detroit area (like me) could drive over on Saturday morning instead of spending Friday night in Grand Haven. With a reduced time-and-money commitment, I think we're more likely to put together a bigger group. Let's wait and see who's interested before changing the time.

There are several reasons I picked mid-June: 1)the historical wave data; 2) I want to avoid July 4th weekend and Fathers Day; 3) I understand a lot of the Michigan people are planning a trip to Georgian Bay in August; and 4) I did some preliminary research to make sure there were no major festivals or events happening in Milwaukee at the time which could make it difficult to find dock space. Again, let's wait and see who's interested before considering other dates.

Buckda posted 02-24-2009 04:28 PM ET (US)     Profile for Buckda  Send Email to Buckda     
I'm good with the proposed date - I just wanted to point out that in my experience growing up along the Michigan shores of Lake Michigan, I know that June can be hit-or-miss to find solid weekends of nice weather. This trip will benefit from a stalled high pressure system immediately overhead. I will put in an order for that forecast with my people, but there are no guarantees.

Hey - I have canvas and two engines - I'll run (Back - in a following sea) in any conditions.

:)

sounds like a fun run.

Dave

home Aside posted 02-24-2009 07:07 PM ET (US)     Profile for home Aside  Send Email to home Aside     
Great Idea, I'm interested and will be watching, thanks for posting all the links.

Pat

Diver Dan posted 02-24-2009 09:40 PM ET (US)     Profile for Diver Dan  Send Email to Diver Dan     
Have three guys interested in doing the trip. Two of us circumnavigated Lake Michigan last July, 866 miles in 14 days without rushing. Agree with Buckda, leaving early Sat (7 AM) would give the best chance of crossing with calmest seast. Would trailer up Fri night. So, add three boats to the armada. Come on June!!!
teepee848 posted 02-25-2009 06:13 AM ET (US)     Profile for teepee848  Send Email to teepee848     
What size boat is recommended for this trip

Tony

K Albus posted 02-25-2009 06:58 AM ET (US)     Profile for K Albus  Send Email to K Albus     
I have an 18 foot Dauntless 180. Dave (Buckda) has an 18 foot Outrage. If the weather conditions are not appropriate for an 18 foot boat, I will not make the crossing. In other words, it will have to be fairly calm. I wouldn't want to make the crossing in an 11 or 13 foot boat, but that doesn't mean it can't or shouldn't be done.
Hoosier posted 02-25-2009 08:45 AM ET (US)     Profile for Hoosier  Send Email to Hoosier     
Any recommendations for a marina with a launch ramp in Grand Haven? We'd overnight on the boat Friday.
Buckda posted 02-25-2009 09:14 AM ET (US)     Profile for Buckda  Send Email to Buckda     
Hoosier (Dave) -

I recommend Barret Boat Works on Spring Lake. They are a full-service marina have a new bathhouse with very nice/clean amenities and are great folks to deal with. I've stayed there several times aboard Gambler.

It is an easy shot to the lake, with plenty of parking, etc.

Hoosier posted 02-25-2009 11:19 AM ET (US)     Profile for Hoosier  Send Email to Hoosier     
Thanks. This could work out. We need to bring the Outrage here to go to NY for the following weekend....
K Albus posted 02-25-2009 11:28 AM ET (US)     Profile for K Albus  Send Email to K Albus     
I contacted McKinley Marina today. They currently have about 15 slips available for June 13, 2009. Reservations have to be called in individually, and a Visa or Mastercard must be used to hold the reservation. The card will not be charged until June 13. I was told that cancellations can be made with no charge at anytime before 7:00 p.m. on June 13, but they would like as much advance notice as possible for cancellations. The woman I spoke with said that they do their best to keep groups together, at the K Dock in the Center Marina, and that when making reservations we should use a group name.

I will be calling in my reservation later today. I will use the group name "The Boston Whaler Group". Anybody else may feel free to mention my name, Kevin Albus, when calling in their reservation.

mateobosch posted 02-25-2009 06:40 PM ET (US)     Profile for mateobosch  Send Email to mateobosch     
I'm not sure what the effective and proven range is on the radios on your boats but you might want to do some real testing before counting on them to transmit 55 miles to contact the Coast Guard from the middle of the lake. I have talked to Buckda in the 10 to 15 mile range over my radio but it was often marginal commo at best. Cell phones may or may not work out that far as most require to be within about 50KM from a tower for signal.

The Lake Express is a large ferry that departs from Milwaukee at 0600 in route to Muskegon every morning during the time frame of this planned outing. I would suggest finding out the freqs they monitor to have an ally at sea in case of something unexpected. Provided the Whaler group leaves early morning as suggested, you should be within range of that vessel about mid point of the trip.

Just my .02

Matt

whaler1414 posted 02-25-2009 09:01 PM ET (US)     Profile for whaler1414  Send Email to whaler1414     
I have been wanting to do this for some time. Cross the
lake 2-4 time in our sailboat every summer but never in the whaler.I'm in, but leaving from Muskegon (home port) not GH.

K Albus posted 02-26-2009 03:40 PM ET (US)     Profile for K Albus  Send Email to K Albus     
Since there hasn't been any real dissent regarding the date, I went ahead and made my marina reservation for Saturday, June 13, 2009, for one night. If anybody else is going to call in a reservation, please let them know you are with the "The Boston Whaler Group".

Since I don't yet have an overnight canvas set-up on my boat, I have also reserved a hotel room for the same night. If I don't have a canvas package by June, I will be spending the night at the County Clare Irish Inn & Pub: http://www.countyclare-inn.com/ The Inn is less than a mile from the marina, and appears to be within easy walking distance.

K Albus posted 02-26-2009 03:49 PM ET (US)     Profile for K Albus  Send Email to K Albus     
In my original post in this thread, I mentioned using June 20, 2009 as an alternate day in case the weather was bad on June 13, 2009. I'd like to withdraw June 20 from consideration as a back-up date at this time.

If the weather is uncooperative for a crossing on June 13, but decent enough for inshore boating, I think Dave's suggestion for a day trip to Holland or Muskegon makes sense. Also, if the June 13 crossing gets scrubbed due to weather, I would then like to consider rescheduling the event for late July. However, I don't want to go to the trouble of making contingency plans and reservations for July at this time. I'd rather only deal with that when and if the need arises.

prj posted 02-26-2009 05:50 PM ET (US)     Profile for prj  Send Email to prj     
Excellent work Kevin. From my perspective I don't see any flaws in your plan to date. Brady St. is eminently accessible for dinner via pedestrian bridge just west of the marina, County Claire will provide fine accommodations a cab ride away if you're carrying gear.

Alterra on the Lake, a fine local coffee shop and bakery, is located just west of the marina also, that should serve you well on Sunday morning, if not Saturday upon your arrival first.
http://alterracoffeepro.com/about/our_cafes/lakefront

http://maps.google.com/maps?f=q&source=s_q&hl=en&geocode=&q=&ie=UTF8& ll=43.053277,-87.886451&spn=0.002646,0.004088&t=h&z=18

I have Sat. June 13th inked into my calendar as a day for boating.

Buckda posted 02-26-2009 07:15 PM ET (US)     Profile for Buckda  Send Email to Buckda     
Okay.

I just have to say that there is entirely too much ice on Lake Michigan right now to get a guy this excited about boating.

How cruel.

I'm working on calendars right now...

Yiddil posted 02-27-2009 12:24 AM ET (US)     Profile for Yiddil  Send Email to Yiddil     
Dave, I crossed the Potomac at the Nice Bridge today and there were a dozen people out fishing and running along the river...then again it was 65 degrees here:))) LOL
jimh posted 02-27-2009 01:19 AM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
Here are the VHF radio coverage maps for USCG stations in the vicinity of these waters:

GRAND HAVEN
http://www.navcen.uscg.gov/marcomms/cgcomms/charts/09grhavn.jpg

MILWAUKEE
http://www.navcen.uscg.gov/marcomms/cgcomms/charts/09milwas.jpg

You can find all USCG radio coverage maps linked from

http://www.navcen.uscg.gov/marcomms/cgcomms/nds.htm .

jimh posted 02-27-2009 01:22 AM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
Please note the following in regard to the coverage shown in the USCG Distress Coverage charts:

VHF Distress Coverage Charts
...Coverage plots assume a mobile transmitter power of 1 watt at sea level over water, and of 25 watts over land....

Since the boats will have 25-watt transmitters and have antennas that are 10-feet or more above the water, the coverage should be better than shown.

Jeff posted 02-27-2009 01:33 PM ET (US)     Profile for Jeff  Send Email to Jeff     
Interesting Idea but, I not sure if I will be able to make it. The New York Trip is the following weekend and I would really like to try and make that.

With family in the Spring Lake and Grand Haven area I do most of my boating out of there. Dave is right that the earlier the better for a departure. A couple things to remember though. The lake is still very cold at that time of the year and during a long crossing like that the air temps in the middle of the lake could be 10 - 20+ degrees less than what the would be on surrounding land. The crossing measured in a straight line is about 85 Miles. With winds and other variables the crossing would be an honest 90 miles of travel. If you have calm - light sea conditions that could be a 4 hour ride one way. That is just crossing time. Add an hour each way for time in the Grand River and the Milwaukee harbor.

The lake can turn it's back on you quickly during a trip like this. So, if you can try and set Monday as a back up return day if you have to. You just never know. I had this bite me in the butt on a Lake Erie crossing. I ended up having to leave the boat in Ohio and find a way home to make a "must attend meeting" the day after our supposed return. I should have planned for a slop day and you just never know. The crossing may be OK but, coming home could be a different story. Also with winds mostly out of the West - Northwest that time of year what may be tolerable outside of Milwaukee could get a lot worse the farther you go east. If it gets really rough there comes a point of no return during the crossing where either you grin and bare it the rest of the way across or, because you can not turn and make the trip back West. So long as the winds are out of the West you should be heading into following seas though during the return which, is more tolerable than most.

Personally, I would wait till August to do that trip myself. Air and water temps are usually much better at that time and it seems the seas are usually more favorable.

My father and I have wanted to make the Crossing from Frankfort Mi to Sturgeon Bay Wi in the Guardian for the last couple years. It is just over 50 miles in a straight line and running 25 - 30 (our typical cruise) mph it could be a just long enough for a nice round trip day cruise. We are hoping to do that trip this August be we will see.

I will keep this on my radar and see what happens with my New York plans. If I do not end up going to NYC I may consider this trip. Though I would not do it in the 17. Which leaves hauling the Guardian over and I am not sure if it's refurb will be done by then.

K Albus posted 02-28-2009 03:39 PM ET (US)     Profile for K Albus  Send Email to K Albus     
I contacted Barrett Boat Works today. They do allow overnight parking of truck and trailer rigs, even if you're not staying at their marina. However, rates for 2009 were not yet available.

Barrett Boat Works: http://www.barrettboatworks.com/index.shtml

skred posted 03-01-2009 01:45 PM ET (US)     Profile for skred  Send Email to skred     
PRJ & Milwaukeeans: Unless something really unforeseen looms up, I'll be launching at McKinley on the 13 of June in my 13-er. I'd be glad to join the group and run up the river to the Alehouse, etc. Sounds like a great idea. If fortune favors me, I may have some very fresh salmon to barbecue at - say - Veterans Park ?...

prj posted 03-01-2009 01:49 PM ET (US)     Profile for prj  Send Email to prj     
Excellent Dennis, maybe you and I can team up to corral a couple salmon that morning early, then meet the Michiganders a few miles out in the lake, weather permitting. Either that, or we rendezvous after their arrival and coffee for a tour around the urban river system and lunch.

Patrick

skred posted 03-04-2009 02:10 PM ET (US)     Profile for skred  Send Email to skred     
Patrick,
That sounds great. I've been kayaking from Bradford Beach up the river past Laacke & Joy's, and found it to be a great jaunt. (Do you kayak at all?) Lots of places offering food and entertainment... I should have my "rehabbed" '73 13 through its shakedown list by then. Also, anyone planning on Door County this summer?

Ablewis posted 03-04-2009 09:40 PM ET (US)     Profile for Ablewis  Send Email to Ablewis     
I might be up for coming over for some fishing in the morning and meeting the rest of the group for a trip up the river. Door County sounds interesting as well.

Andy

L H G posted 03-05-2009 02:17 AM ET (US)     Profile for L H G    
I can't believe you guys have picked the WIDEST part of Lake Michigan to cross, about 100 miles each way. That's real serious boating in single engine craft. I don't think it's a smart thing to do, and 3 to 4 hours of open water cruising is not my idea of a great time. I've heard it gets to be old and boring after a while. It will be cold out there also in June. I have the twin engine 25 Outrage, and I have never even considered doing that big water trip.

As the founder of the Boston Whaler Great Lakes Cruising Club, I would choose the northern part of the Lake, in July or August, Sturgeon Bay to Leland or Frankfort, a much shorter, and at the same time, much more interesting trip. The Manitou Islands break up the open water crossing distance.

That Gulf incident was only 38 miles out. On a 100 mile crossing you will be at least that far from land for 1/3rd of the trip, but the water will be colder. You will be out of sight of land for 70 miles.

K Albus posted 03-05-2009 09:13 AM ET (US)     Profile for K Albus  Send Email to K Albus     
This trip is more about the destination than getting there. Milwaukee appears to be a very nice place to visit by boat.

I did not intentionally plan to make the crossing at the widest point of the lake. In any event, I'm not worried about the crossing. The motor on my boat is well-maintained has run flawlessly for more than 200 hours. There is no reason to expect that it will break down on this trip just because it will be far from land. All appropriate safety precautions will be taken, and the trip will canceled if there is any question about the weather. I have no desire to pound through rough water for four or more hours in either direction.

K Albus posted 03-05-2009 10:08 AM ET (US)     Profile for K Albus  Send Email to K Albus     
Back in the late 1800s, the Milwaukee to Grand Haven steamboat mail run was a matter of some controversy: http://query.nytimes.com/mem/archive-free/pdf?_r=1& res=9504EFD7133CEE3ABC4C53DFB066838A699FDE

If anybody needs a letter delivered from Grand Haven to Milwaukee in June 2009, I will be happy to take it for the cost of my passage.

Buckda posted 03-09-2009 08:39 AM ET (US)     Profile for Buckda  Send Email to Buckda     
Perhaps most importantly on the Lake Michigan Crossing - this is not a sightseeing trip - and was never billed as such. Kevin started out by calling it an "adventure" right in the first post.

Adventures, as you probably know, have a lot of boredom packed into them. Crossing Lake Michigan is not about what you will see. I know what we will see. A lot of water, not a lot of land, etc. It is boring. Making the 56 mile run from Copper Harbor to Isle Royale is also boring. Believe me - I've done the crossing 4 times now.

...but an adventure is also about the whole - the aggregate. It is not abandoned because there might be something that is non-stop snoozer material. Going to the moon requires 4 days of traveling through the vacuum of space. Talk about desolate highways...

No. Adventure is about the destination - the goal. Making it happen and doing something that few others do.

Anyway - it is up to everyone what they want to do - and they can make those determinations for themselves. I think I know Kevin's personality enough to believe that he will be the first one to call it off in case of weather...besides, if I had any doubts/reservations about it on the day of, I'd just divert to another destination. That choice and decision belongs to me as the captain of my vessel.

prj posted 03-15-2009 09:35 PM ET (US)     Profile for prj  Send Email to prj     
Right in the harbor, at the Milwaukee River mouth after it's confluence with the Kinnickinnic (KK) and Menomonee Rivers, Wisconsin has recently constructed and opened Lakeshore State Park.

http://www.dnr.state.wi.us/Org/land/parks/specific/lakeshore/

Therein lie a number of reservable boat slips, though not quite a marina, because the clubhouse with service has yet to be constructed. They also constructed a "small boat beach", specifically NOT for swimming. You can see it facing SSW in a small photo in the link above. Perhaps we can beach our craft there for an afternoon beverage and review of each other's vessels. I know I'd really like to climb around a couple of our expected visitors' boats.

If you look at the google link I've attached here, Lakeshore Park does not show accurately as the aerial needs an update. Check out the map on the DNR page for best accuracy.

http://maps.google.com/maps?hl=en&ie=UTF8&ll=43.032055,-87.888908&spn=0. 013411,0.03077&t=h&z=16

http://www.dnr.state.wi.us/Org/land/parks/specific/lakeshore/maps/ LSP0506c.pdf

Moose posted 03-16-2009 10:45 AM ET (US)     Profile for Moose  Send Email to Moose     
I've been interested in making this trip for many years. If I'm able to change some existing plans I may become a participant.

Meanwhile, ice as far as the eye can see at South Haven, as of March 14!

Warning: poor cell phone photo.

http://i212.photobucket.com/albums/cc159/Gritman99/SouthHavenMarch14.jpg

K Albus posted 03-17-2009 10:15 AM ET (US)     Profile for K Albus  Send Email to K Albus     
Here's an updated satellite view of the "boat beach" mentioned by Patrick. http://maps.live.com/default.aspx?v=2&FORM=LMLTCC&cp=43.032635~-87. 89777&style=h&lvl=15&tilt=-90&dir=0&alt=-1000&scene=5431767&phx=0&phy=0& phscl=1&encType=1 The beach on the southwest portion of the island may be a good initial rendezvous spot when the boats arrive from Michigan. Assuming that we will leave Michigan early in the morning, we will likely have a couple of hours to kill before checking in at the McKinley Marina. We could perhaps meet up with the Wisconsin boats at the boat beach, check out each others' boats, and then proceed with the river tour.
AtoZ posted 03-17-2009 07:01 PM ET (US)     Profile for AtoZ  Send Email to AtoZ     
Moose, I heard you went over to check things out. Fortunately for all of us, "as far as the eye can see" is not that far.

http://coastwatch.glerl.noaa.gov/modis/modis.cgi/modis?region=m&page=1&template=sub&image=a1.09075.1839.LakeMichigan.143.250m.jpg

I think we should start now...

Wiscbw posted 03-18-2009 06:34 AM ET (US)     Profile for Wiscbw  Send Email to Wiscbw     
Sounds like a fun trip. I’ve scheduled my boat for spring maintenance, and put this trip on my calendar. I will try and join this Whaler armada.
prj posted 03-19-2009 04:24 PM ET (US)     Profile for prj  Send Email to prj     
Moose, we sent all of our ice across the Big Pond to you, apologies for that.

I like the plan to convene on the boat beach, Kevin. Fairly central and sheltered so we can relax.

And Wiscbw, if I recall, you have one of the recently admired mid-90's 21 foot Outrages with a Yamaha outboard. Bring that on over to the coast and join us.

This video is a fine preview of a portion of the river system that we'll traverse. The Lake Express Ferry, a large aluminum high speed catamaran crossing from Milwaukee to Muskego, travels from its port on the south end of the outer harbor to the mouth of the Milwaukee, the veers port up the Menomonee River past the Harley-Davidson Museum and to a remote looking slip on a canal up that way. I had no idea it berthed up there in the winter...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=usPih0oPZIg

Ablewis posted 03-19-2009 09:03 PM ET (US)     Profile for Ablewis  Send Email to Ablewis     
PRJ,

Would you need downriggers to pursue those salmon in June or could you get by with some dipsy divers and flat lines with snap weights?

Andy

DragnBallz posted 03-19-2009 11:56 PM ET (US)     Profile for DragnBallz  Send Email to DragnBallz     
Run wires, high divers and lead cores.
mobey posted 04-08-2009 10:41 AM ET (US)     Profile for mobey  Send Email to mobey     
A trip across Lake Michigan has been on my mind to do since I've been a kid. I have to say, though- individually- think through this plan very thoroughly. I love the lake and I’m not too risk adverse- but one has to remember: Lake Michigan + bad weather + humans can easily equal disaster or death.

The Lake Is Always BIG And The Lake Is Always COLD!

My office and some property I have is right by the lake- 25 miles North of Milwaukee- in Port Washington, WI. I've watched the lake almost every day for the past 15 years. It seems to me to be a long shot that there will be acceptable weather for both a West and East crossing that must occur on a specific weekend for that Saturday, and then again on that Sunday. I’m not saying that two consecutive days of decent seas/ weather can’t happen, but no matter what the two day forecast is- ½ or 1 day later it is often enough a different story.

Another thing on my mind is this- If during the event Big Ol’ Lake Michigan turns ugly & gray, or if weather reports change abruptly with indications of worsening conditions- having a group of boats of varying size and capability, along with occupants of varying personalities (risk takers vs. Mr./ Mrs. Panic) will add to the difficulty in keeping this a fun and safe event. I have to assume that everyone attending will have the ability to wait out bad weather until Monday, Tuesday, or whatever day- for the trip home. Those that can’t do have the option of getting back to Michigan by renting a car, or taking the Lake Express Ferry. Then there is just the question of getting the boat back home…

prj posted 04-13-2009 11:35 AM ET (US)     Profile for prj  Send Email to prj     
First splash of the year this weekend with my Outrage. We towed her up to Marinette / Menomonee for the river walleye run. Poked out into Green Bay which was beautiful and relatively calm with 2' swells rolling in, despite the prolonged NNE blow we'd had for the previous couple days.

Are you going to come join us with your Cohasset, Charlie?

Ablewis posted 04-13-2009 08:27 PM ET (US)     Profile for Ablewis  Send Email to Ablewis     
How was the bite on the river? I'm heading up to Oconto on May 2'nd.

Andy

prj posted 04-13-2009 09:19 PM ET (US)     Profile for prj  Send Email to prj     
We timed it perfectly Andy. Arrived day 3 of a steady NNE period of cooling down to below freezing weather and departed on the first day of a slow warming with some light rains. You know how that goes...
stevesalick posted 04-14-2009 05:59 PM ET (US)     Profile for stevesalick  Send Email to stevesalick     
In response to Mobey’s post: Not to sound like a wimp but personally, I would not do the crossing in anything less than a 19 or 21 footer, preferably with canvas and 2 engines. One engine if crossing with a group might be okay, weather permitting. I’ve crossed the lake over 30 times in a large sailboat, many of those times, I could have done it in my 16’ Cohasset but many times not. As the saying goes, “Life (and boating on Lake MI) is like a box of chocolates, you never know what you’re going to get”

On another subject but related, I wonder how many boats we would have total if it is a nice weekend? If not, worst case scenario, and the MI boats do not come over, how many would we have from the WI area? I am near Milwaukee and will put in either way at McKinley Marina or on the river and hopefully meet up with some fellow Whaler’s at the small boat beach in the park if that is the rendezvous point. Obviously, if it’s terrible weather, I will be at home watching movies, but if it’s okay, I’ll be there and really looking forward to it. Anybody out there? Can we get a head count?

mobey posted 04-15-2009 10:34 PM ET (US)     Profile for mobey  Send Email to mobey     
Cohassets are sure nice- but my Sakonnet still ain't ready for go just yet. Man, I sure need to power forward and get the in-line 115 Merc mounted, controls rigged, and set this Whaler free! Boat or not though, I'll sure try to make it to the gathering.
Kumiega posted 04-18-2009 02:05 AM ET (US)     Profile for Kumiega  Send Email to Kumiega     
I do the Queen cup every year Milwaukee to Grand Haven. We go in July. I do not know if I would do this in a Whaler unless there was big high over the lake.

The best time is early August since you have the highest chance of a big high sitting over the lake. The worst time is June or September since the chance of a Northerly is high. A northernly of 20 Knots would be 5-6 foot seas in the middle of the lake.

I trust my boat but I know the lake and it is wild in the middle of the lake during a thunderstorm or a stong northerly. I would be off the lake by noon unless a big high is sitting over the entire lake to avoid any chance of a storm in the middle. If you time it right with a big high then enjoy the swimming in the middle of the lake to cool off from the heat.

Good luck and be safe.

Phatboy posted 04-27-2009 09:41 PM ET (US)     Profile for Phatboy  Send Email to Phatboy     
I have a 17 Montauk with a 24 gallon tank and a 90 Merc. Any idea how much fuel I would actually need for this trip? I would probably pack a spair 12 gallon tank. I have always wanted to make this trip with the Whaler. I have crossed several times in my cruiser, hoping for some wave action, and the lake has been pretty flat, both ways, every time. I often take my Whaler out in 8 footers to surf and jump. I think this trip sounds like a riot and I have it pencilled in on my calender. I might be able to get three other Whalers to join me. They are all in the 21' - 24' range.
home Aside posted 04-27-2009 11:05 PM ET (US)     Profile for home Aside  Send Email to home Aside     
On my previous 1982 Montauk with Evinrude 90 I use to average about 55 miles on a 12 gallon tank just FYI

Pat

prj posted 04-28-2009 11:01 AM ET (US)     Profile for prj  Send Email to prj     
Phatboy:

If you haven't visited the Harley-Davidson Museum yet, this might present a fine opportunity to do so by boat. It is located directly on the Menominee River a short ride inland from the Lake.


prj posted 04-28-2009 01:38 PM ET (US)     Profile for prj  Send Email to prj     
Mid lake weather buoy No. 45007 has been set for the season near the midpoint of your crossing. That would be a fine source of timely and accurate data for you Michiganders just prior to crossing.

http://www.jsonline.com/news/wisconsin/43835612.html

http://www.ndbc.noaa.gov/station_page.php?station=45007


Moby Dick posted 05-03-2009 08:09 AM ET (US)     Profile for Moby Dick  Send Email to Moby Dick     
I have a Montauk and have made the trip from Bridgman,MI to Chicago Harbor 3 times. We always went in early August and always left in calm seas but never had it calm all the way in either direction. My trip was only 53 miles and we always returned the same day. My 100HP Johnson would burn 13-14 gallons with 3-4 guys averaging 200 lbs. I agree that in early August the lake may lay down for 3-4 days at a time but never in June. I don't think I would make this trip in a Montauk as I can't remember a trip where we didn't have to slow less than planing speed for part of the trip.
Phatboy posted 05-05-2009 09:18 PM ET (US)     Profile for Phatboy  Send Email to Phatboy     
Thanks for the feedback! AS for the Harley museum, that sounds like a great plan! I also appreciate the rest of the information. Still planning on the trip!
Moose posted 05-06-2009 08:21 AM ET (US)     Profile for Moose  Send Email to Moose     
Hey Sorber,

Small world.

I'm that guy from NMU that talked with you about the cottage you were selling on Whitefish Bay about five years ago. I was a year ahead of your brother back in the Halverson Hall days, quite a few mutual friends/acquaintances from the Lansing area. Good to see you're a Whaler man too.

I'm trying to disentangle myself from some previous commitments for that weekend and make this trip, hopefully I'll see you there.

Steve Slater

home Aside posted 05-06-2009 01:39 PM ET (US)     Profile for home Aside  Send Email to home Aside     
Moose,
I too went to NMU & lived in Halverson 1968-1972, hope to see you on this trip if/when it comes off

Pat

Buckda posted 05-06-2009 06:33 PM ET (US)     Profile for Buckda  Send Email to Buckda     
Four or five years ago, my dad was about a year into a major renovation of a home on a bluff overlooking southern Lake Michigan. The bluff was about 70 feet above the lake with a steep, concrete debris scattered slope to the lake below. At the lake level, the US Army Corps of Engineers had long ago reinforced the shoreline with concrete blocks, and the remnants of an old sea wall was present about 30 feet out in the lake. All that was left of this wooden sea wall was some upright piles, but you could see the outline of the original wall.

I was helping my father in the yard one Sunday afternoon and we finished up before dinner and I went upstairs to get a shower. When I returned, a young man was in the garage with my dad. He had been aboard a 20-something foot Bayliner and was making his way around the bottom of the lake from Chicago on his way to meet friends at South Haven.

When he departed Chicago earlier in the day, the seas were calm and the forecast was for West winds at 10-15 mph and 1-2 ft. waves. What he failed to realize was that the forecast was for Chicago waters - on the lee side of the lake.

By the time he came by my dad's property, the lake was sending 6' breaking waves surging onto the Michigan shore. In a moment of inattention, a wave swept into his boat and he hit his head on the windshield, breaking his cheekbone and sending him into the water.

Unable to climb aboard, he was barely able to get out of the way as the lake lifted his boat over the wooden pilings and crushed it against the concrete blocks at the base of the bluff.

The young guy then clambered his way up the bluff with bloody hands and a bloody nose and face to find my dad watering the flowers.

Of course, we took care of him, but the boat was a complete loss and after three days of having it's way with the hull, Lake Michigan calmed enough to allow a salvage barge come in and pick up the pieces, the largest of which was the engine block, outdrive and a portion of the transom. The next largest was the windshield assembly followed by the seats and the fuel tank. Everything else was pulverized into bits smaller than 2' square.

It is a long way across the lake, and she can be mean. I'm interested in this trip, but if I get a whiff of a pressure system changing or whatnot, I'm going to divert to a day of activities on the Michigan shore, and will recommend that anyone in a Montauk hull do the same.

Now...if we get a stationary high pressure system stalled over the lake, we're golden!

Dave

Kumiega posted 05-07-2009 01:39 AM ET (US)     Profile for Kumiega  Send Email to Kumiega     
I agree. The lake is big in the middle for a 40' sloop. Two years ago the race over Friday night was un-eventful. I stayed in Holland with friends. The way back started calm 1-2 seas.

Mid-lake the lake was so rough one of the boats owners was thrown from the nav station and almost broke a hip. He was so severely bruised that he passed out. He was upper 70's. He is a very seasoned sailor, 40+ macs. His wife banned him from racing any long distance races since she feared a broken hip. The young guys down below said the wave hit and just rolled the hull. This happens in the middle of the lake during a northernly. The beach in Holland was nice with 2-3 waves and 15 knots.

I would make sure you have a big high. I would recommend you move the date to maybe July 20th. Why the 20th the lake will be packed with boats and the cutter will be parked in the middle of the lake off Milwaukee Sunday morning. The coast guard will be out in force in the middle of the lake on Saturday and Sunday due to the Mac Race.

prj posted 05-07-2009 11:01 AM ET (US)     Profile for prj  Send Email to prj     
Please don't take this as a suggestion to throw caution to the wind and recklessly cross regardless of conditions, but some of the anecdotes lean more towards alarmism than sound recommendations for what I believe to be competent captains and boat owners.

If you're in your upper 70s, this small boat crossing may not be for you.

If the waves are large and building on the departure day, perhaps departure should be postponed or cancelled.

If wave heights in Muskegon harbor are just fine, perhaps you're not checking the relevant weather and wave height information.
http://www.ndbc.noaa.gov/station_page.php?station=45007

If your vessel is speed constrained to 6 knots, you should not cross until you get an acceptable 2 day weather window. If you can do 20-30 MPH, an acceptable 3-4 hour weather window will work.

My anecdote:
One day many years ago, I was in my mother's small jon-boat on Spring Lake, a 100 acre generally shallow inland lake in SE Wisconsin that my family has had property on for a century. Due to youth and exuberance, I was both standing up to cast and thoroughly soused on Pabst from the porch keg. I fell into the lake.

If this happened on Lake Michigan, I would most likely be DEAD! AHHH!

Patrick (alive to tell this harrowing tale!)

Phatboy posted 05-07-2009 11:02 AM ET (US)     Profile for Phatboy  Send Email to Phatboy     
Moose! Nice to hear from you! I remember you! Brig does too! He is in the next office (he has a 21 Outrage). You were a forward in Rugby, weren’t you? I was the B team Hooker until Dooley graduated. Clear your schedule and let’s do this! Where do you normally boat out of? We have a place on Spring Lake so this is pretty convenient.

Buckda, your advice is good and well received. I like to do extreme things, but not stupid things. If the lake is too rough to cross, I think a trip to Saugatuck could be fun for a couple adult beverages, lunch, then back to Grand Haven. If the lake is really rough, maybe just go to Dockers in Muskegon.

Pat, you are old!! Just kidding. I hope you still have your NMU humor! I lived in Halverson (Blackfoot) from 1984-1986. Graduated from NMU in 1989. I still love Marquette, but don't get up there very often. Hope to see you in a few weeks!

K Albus posted 05-07-2009 12:40 PM ET (US)     Profile for K Albus  Send Email to K Albus     
It's been a while since I posted in this thread, but I remain committed to making the trip on the weekend of June 13, weather permitting. If it appears that a tolerably comfortable crossing can be made in both directions on that weekend, I'll be giving it a try. If conditions on the morning of June 13 are good but the forecast for Sunday is bad, I'll stay in Michigan. I don't know how many times I have to repeat this, but I'm not going to risk my life for a weekend boat trip. That being said, I don't think we need a perfect weather weekend to make this trip a go. All of the Michigan people that I know who have expressed interest in this trip are reasonable people and experienced boaters. I'm sure that none of us are going to attempt the crossing in gale conditions. However, I expect that between now and June 13 we'll get another dozen or so posts warning us of the dangers of Lake Michi-death.

Now, back to the good stuff. The following is a proposed agenda for the trip for the Michigan group based on the posts above:

1. Depart Michigan early Saturday morning (time yet to be determined).

2. Cross lake and meet Wisconsin group at the boat beach at Lakeshore Park sometime before noon.

3. Take a trip up the Milwaukee River, tour the River Walk district, and stop for lunch.

4. Take a trip up the Menominee River, with a possible stop at the Harley Davidson museum.

5. Head to McKinley Marina for overnight docking.

6. Dinner and cocktails on Brady Street.

7. Breakfast near or at McKinley Marina.

8. Depart for Michigan before noon (likely much earlier than noon).

Please feel free to suggest any changes or additions to the proposed agenda. Also please feel free to post any recommendations that this crossing should only be made in an ocean liner on a windless and sunny day.

stevesalick posted 05-07-2009 02:17 PM ET (US)     Profile for stevesalick  Send Email to stevesalick     
I don't think we'll be seeing anymore posts regarding the dangers of Lake Michigan. Thanks for being a leader and initiating this rendezvous!

I've only had my little Cohasset for a couple of years and am really looking forward to meeting others who are truly interested in Boston Whalers and boating.

For what it's worth, the Menomonee Rive does not have much to offer except for the Harley Museum. If any are not interested in the museum, there might be alternatives such as the Milwaukee lakefront and South Shore Yacht Club. The Milwaukee River has many great bars and eateries. Even a Brewery which might be offering tours. We can discuss over lunch.

PeteB88 posted 05-07-2009 06:59 PM ET (US)     Profile for PeteB88  Send Email to PeteB88     
Standing by on this one - but go/no-go we should get together that weekend near Grand H or where-ever. I am game regarding the OR 17 but need to consult Captain Buck-Da on this.
cohasett73 posted 05-08-2009 09:27 AM ET (US)     Profile for cohasett73  Send Email to cohasett73     
Even if the Michigan contingent is unable to make their trip because of risky lake conditions the Wisconsin group should still make an effort to get together.
Tom from Rubicon,WI
Moose posted 05-08-2009 12:10 PM ET (US)     Profile for Moose  Send Email to Moose     
Phatboy,

We do most of our local boating out of South Haven. A trip or two a year from there up your way, Saugatuck, Holland, Grand Haven, and a few weeks in the Les Cheneaux Islands, but, mostly we don't use the boat! I think we were getting close to 300 hours at the end of last season. I bought the darn thing with zero hours in 2001, I know, I know, pretty pathetic...

Good to hear about Brig's Outrage. Hopefully I'll be able to make this trip or we'll cross paths elsewhere soon.

Pat,

We met briefly last August at the Harbor Springs owners club soiree. I was that freak that dared to show up with the newish Outrage. Great to hear you're Wildcat too! Great times up there, eh?!

Moose

stevesalick posted 05-08-2009 04:31 PM ET (US)     Profile for stevesalick  Send Email to stevesalick     
Tom from Rubicon,

I second your motion!

Steve from Menomonee Falls

Kumiega posted 05-09-2009 02:16 AM ET (US)     Profile for Kumiega  Send Email to Kumiega     
I am just trying to help. It was not meant to question anyone’s seamanship. The person mentioned sailed over 45 Macs and 20 Port Hurons. This person is a seasoned sailor. The wave hit the boat and knocked him out of Nav station seat down below. It also startled the young people below. Localized weather happens regularly in June.

I have raced on boats from 30 foot to the GL70’s most of the summer for the last 26 years and have crossed the lake many many time in good and bad weather. Therefore, based on the comment make suggestions instead of telling people the horror stories: Here are my suggestions

1. Get a reliable weather system.
a. Rent a Satellite phone and pay for Sailflow or equal. This will give you better localized weather in the middle of the lake.
b. Buy satellite radio with weather and feed it into your GPS.
c. Assume without a large high the weather radio will be in-accurate.
2. Plan for localized weather in June.
a. In June the lake is cold and the land can be hot. This can set up strong local winds mid-day winds. These local winds are not normally recorded on the weather radio. Therefore, plan on gusts in the mid 20s unless you have a strong high. The later in the day the high the probability of localized weather and gusts.
b. Plan for fog for the early morning in June in the middle of the lake.
3. Assume you may have to slow down in the middle if you hit local weather so bring a lot of extra gas.

I don’t think the risk is high given the boats.

I apologize if people take my posts as not supportive. I love crossing the lake. I think every boater should cross the lake. I was trying to be very supportive by helping people understand that June has a higher probability of a slow cold crossing in moderate seas due to local weather patterns than August.

I will not post again so either way have fun and be safe.

PeteB88 posted 05-09-2009 12:17 PM ET (US)     Profile for PeteB88  Send Email to PeteB88     
I appreciate all the advice and cautions several of you have posted Dave and Kumiega big time.

I remember when I first moved to Oregon years ago and I was non-stop, full throttle in total "go for it!" mode for the first couple of years. I took risks and didn't even realize it. Rented cross country skis late one December afternoon at Timberline Lodge on Mt Hood, after a big dump, total clouds to fog just above the tops of the trees and getting late, deep snow. Broke a binding on one ski and I was mid-thigh deep stepping into the snow. It took a very long time to get back, balancing on the one ski, throwing the other forward, stepping on it to keep moving. Could have been real bad.

Then there was the time the dogs went over the cliff - got them out but critical situation and all the chances taken on the water.

Then one day my GF and I went to Cape Kiwanda and decided to drive on the beach N of Pacific City down to the big rock. As I climbed up the rocks heading to the top of one of the most photographed coastal shots ever there was a simple wooden sign that read as follows:

"Beyond This Point
Your Life May Depend On Your Good Judgement"

I continued past it to the top with my dog and realized the rock was very gradually, almost unperceptively pitching towards the sea. Any further we could have been in trouble, especially the dog. We turned around.

I have never forgotten that sign or that moment when I realized I'd rolled the dice many times and had been lucky. At some point in life you cannot depend on "lucky".

Phatboy posted 05-14-2009 03:12 PM ET (US)     Profile for Phatboy  Send Email to Phatboy     
I just made my reservation at McKinley Marina. As for hotel, I tried for the County Clare Irish Inn and Pub, but it is all booked up. Pretty cool looking place. I ended up booking a room at the Iron Horse Hotel. Looks pretty cool, but a little pricey. So it will be about the ride AND the destination. There are also rooms available at the Comfort Inn (Toll-Free: (800) 328-7275) which is pretty close to the Marina.

Looking forward to the trip!

Jon

prj posted 05-15-2009 10:44 AM ET (US)     Profile for prj  Send Email to prj     
Good plan and second, Tom and Steve, I've blocked out that Saturday and will plan on boating even if the Michiganders can't make the crossing, unless the weather is particularly inclement of course.

Phatboy, as the architect for the Iron Horse Hotel, I can assure you that you'll love the joint. Fine new amenities in a beautiful century-old high quality building. Challenging project due to Historic Designation and some Code issue, but very successfully brought to fruition. I've actually boated to the IHH from up the Menomonee, passing the HD Museum on the way.

At 2:04 on this video, the IHH is centered on your screen:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=usPih0oPZIg

The firm I previously worked for also designed County Claire and I understand that it is quite nice, though I've never stayed there.


Ablewis posted 05-15-2009 02:53 PM ET (US)     Profile for Ablewis  Send Email to Ablewis     
I have the 13'th on the calendar and will be there if the weather isn't too bad. I would be up for fishing in the a.m. and then heading up the river regardless of whether or not the Michigan folks make it. I'm not sure if I will be staying overnight or not.

Andy

cohasett73 posted 05-16-2009 08:56 AM ET (US)     Profile for cohasett73  Send Email to cohasett73     
Andy,
If you like my wife and I would be glad to put you up.
Tom from Rubicon,WI
Phatboy posted 05-27-2009 02:24 PM ET (US)     Profile for Phatboy  Send Email to Phatboy     
Just touching base to make sure we are still on? Any idea of how many boats will be making the cross? I have replaced my Pate Plastics tank with a Moeller 26 gallon tank on my 17 Montauk. I will also be hauling an extra 10 gallons (36 gallons total) of gas to get me across. Also installed a new GPS chart plotter. I am ready to rock and roll!
K Albus posted 05-27-2009 02:54 PM ET (US)     Profile for K Albus  Send Email to K Albus     
I'm definitely in. As far as I know only Phatboy and I have made reservations at McKinley Marina.

Here's the list of those who expressed interest:

From the Michigan side:
K Albus
Buckda
home Aside
Diver Dan
Hoosier
Whaler 1414
Jeff
Moose
Phatboy

From the Wisconsin side:
prj
skred
Ablewis
Wiscbw
Steve Salick
mobey

Definitely out:
LHG

Buckda posted 05-27-2009 02:55 PM ET (US)     Profile for Buckda  Send Email to Buckda     
I have Monday, the 15th off from work in case we need to delay the return crossing for a day or need to ride Greyhound back to Grand Haven and drive back with the trailer....you know, scenarios!!

L H G posted 05-27-2009 04:01 PM ET (US)     Profile for L H G    
You guys should launch and leave from Muskegon, a few miles north of Grand Haven. Then you can take the high speed ferry back and your cars will be waiting for you nearby!

Get ready for some really frigid boating out there in the middle and toward the WI side. Mills canvas is a must-have. Lake Mighigan seems to be colder than normal this year.

Plan your fuel use as half of what you normally get at easy cruising speed on calm water. When you're lugging along in bigger waves, your engine will use twice as much gas.

Be sure one of the bigger boats has a pre-rigged towing bridle and 150' of line available. Getting a towing hook on a Whaler bow eye in rough conditions will not be easy.

Brrrrrrrr........

K Albus posted 05-27-2009 04:30 PM ET (US)     Profile for K Albus  Send Email to K Albus     
Larry, your idea about the ferry is an excellent one. I checked the schedule, and there is a ferry leaving Milwaukee at 12:30 p.m. on Sunday. If we need to take it back to Michigan, the ferry ride takes 2.5 hours and the fare is $81, which is just a few dollars more than the fare for the 12+ hour Greyhound ride. I have a friend who lives in Grand Haven who should be able to transfer at least a few of us from Muskegon to Grand Haven if necessary.

Lake Express Ferry Schedule: http://www.lake-express.com/schedule/index.aspx

Hoosier posted 05-27-2009 05:12 PM ET (US)     Profile for Hoosier  Send Email to Hoosier     
Larry makes a good point. I have a 1979 Outrage V-20 with a 2002 Suzuki DF-115 4-Stroke engine, range on a full tank is about 240 miles. Is Home Aside the biggest boat and Buckda the only twin engine?

Buckda posted 05-27-2009 05:37 PM ET (US)     Profile for Buckda  Send Email to Buckda     
Okay, time to take bets. My money is on a Mercury motor failing the crossing, requiring the tow bridle and the dangerous operation of connecting a tow rope to the bow eye.

Since Larry has worked so very hard to discourage this trip, I think it's only fair to inform everyone that I'm making it in my 1968 Starcraft aluminum with 1974 75 hp 50 hp Mercury 4-cylinder motor. I have 26 gallons of tankage available and no reserve flotation. The boat doesn't have an anchor. I hope that is okay. I don't really know how far I can get on the 26 gallons of gas, but think I can make it if I squeeze the helm really hard near the end and rock back and forth and chant "come on baby!" The boat has a compass, but I'm not sure it works. There is no radio. I will bring some cheetos and plenty of beer though, just in case. I plan to wear flip flops and a white Tank top T-shirt with cut-off jean shorts. I hope no one is offended by my hairy chest and gold chains.

Moose posted 05-27-2009 05:39 PM ET (US)     Profile for Moose  Send Email to Moose     
Hope this guy is not planning on making the trip too.

http://www.grandhaventribune.com/paid/294577740525277.bsp

http://www.wwmt.com/articles/boating-1362943-drunk-rescued.html

That must have been one heck of a t-shirt!

Buckda posted 05-27-2009 05:55 PM ET (US)     Profile for Buckda  Send Email to Buckda     
On Saturday, I was almost run over by a boat in the Grand River that had improper navigation lights. The green side light was located on the port side instead of starboard.

You see a lot of "interesting" stuff on a holiday weekend at Grand Haven, that is for sure. Probably one of the single busiest boat ports in the summer for recreational boaters.

K Albus posted 05-27-2009 06:51 PM ET (US)     Profile for K Albus  Send Email to K Albus     
Dave, you won't need a compass to make the trip. It's straight across the lake. Just pick a point on the horizon when leaving the harbor and stare at it for a while. Then steer directly for that point, and plow ahead at full speed for a couple of hours.

Don't worry about making it to Milwaukee - it can't be done. Long before you get to Wisconsin one of two things will happen: 1) as with all single engine boats, your engine will inexplicably stop working at about mid-lake, or 2) you will hit one of Lake Michigan's notorious mid-June ice floes.

And when your breakdown occurs, your failure to bring a VHF radio will be of no consequence. The Coast Guard's land-based stations don't cover that area, and no other boater would be foolish enough to be anywhere near the middle of Lake Michigan at that time of year.

If you're bringing Cheetos, you better bring about a two month supply. It will be a least that long before anybody happens across you out there. And, most importantly, don't forget to wear your snowmobile suit (with built-in flotation, of course).

I would ask the Wisconsin contingent to have some hot chocolate and a warm fire waiting for us at the planned rendezvous point, but I guess there's not much point in making the request - there's very little likelihood of any of us actually making it there.

AtoZ posted 05-27-2009 08:10 PM ET (US)     Profile for AtoZ  Send Email to AtoZ     
Moose, are you going? I think Donna and I will go up for the day. If the flotilla is going all the way across, we will run out with them for an hour then return.
Terry
Phatboy posted 05-27-2009 08:13 PM ET (US)     Profile for Phatboy  Send Email to Phatboy     
Moose,

That article has a misprint! I am not from Connecticut! Errr...ahhhh...never mind.

Jeff posted 05-27-2009 09:36 PM ET (US)     Profile for Jeff  Send Email to Jeff     
I will not be doing this event. As stated before I would ONLY "consider" doing a trip like this on the Twin Engine 22' Guardian. Well that boat is heading up to Frankfort early this year so, it will be unavailable for this "press on regardless" type die hard trip.

Also, I am still planning to get to the New York event the following weekend. Two events so close would not be possible so, I am going to stick with the New York event.

Say what you want but, this run is not one to be taken lightly. It deserves back up plans for both sides of the trip as well as an agreed upon "GROUP" ditch plan if things turn on you guys during the crossing. The last thing you want is for people to break out of the group during a crossing leaving themselves or, others on their own. To go along with that you guys may want to set an agreed upon cruising speed and course to keep everyone together. All the dynamics of running in a large group.

As stated above my father and I are going to try to make the run from Frankfort to Sturgeon Bay crossing during the first week of July. This is a much more doable trip in my book.

Buckda posted 05-28-2009 08:50 AM ET (US)     Profile for Buckda  Send Email to Buckda     
"press on regardless"??

I don't know where you're getting that from, Jeff.

I'm just all hot and bothered because I don't go to other people's threads when I am not planning to attend their event and take a whiz in the midst of them.

I guess I could warn people going to the New York event that the Atlantic ocean is cold this time of year...or remind them that they'd better wear socks. There's no benefit in doing so.

cohasett73 posted 05-28-2009 10:37 AM ET (US)     Profile for cohasett73  Send Email to cohasett73     
From the Wisconsin side. I'm in. Even if I have to run on my 5hp kicker.
Tom from Rubicon,WI
Jeff posted 05-28-2009 11:16 AM ET (US)     Profile for Jeff  Send Email to Jeff     
Dave,

"Press on regardless" is a term used in the rally / automotive racing world. It comes from the "Press on regardless" rally that took place in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan and has now become the sanctioned SCCA Lake Superior rally. The race was started by a small group of die hard car guys getting together and setting a long and difficult course and running it over a weekend. There was no closed course, corner workers nor permit to run the event. The course was one that was full of rough and tight back roads over a grueling distance. The course tested the cars as well as the driver / co-driver team to see if they could complete the journey others would not want to attempt.

This trip just has the same feeling to it and that is why I called it that.

K Albus posted 05-28-2009 11:43 AM ET (US)     Profile for K Albus  Send Email to K Albus     
I don't see this trip as some kind of extreme test of endurance. Under ideal conditions the crossing should only take about three hours. There have been many days when I have spent much longer amounts of time running my boat. Even in less than ideal conditions, the weather will need to be at least good enough that the crossing can be completed in about four hours. If the weather is any worse than that, i.e., if non-planing speeds will required, it's more likely than not that the crossing will be canceled.

I also don't see this trip as some kind of extreme climate challenge. Granted it will be cool out in the middle of the lake, but a couple of hours in high 40-degree or low 50-degree temperatures isn't going to kill anybody. I've spent much longer periods of time boating and fishing in colder weather.

I also do not have a "press on regardless" attitude. If the wind and wave forecast look good but we get out on the lake and find uncomfortably choppy conditions, I will not hesitate to turn around and head back in.

home Aside posted 05-28-2009 10:17 PM ET (US)     Profile for home Aside  Send Email to home Aside     
I'm still looking at my calender to see if I can make it.....I'll know very soon

I like the idea of this trip, I think most here are pretty level headed / safety conscious. I've enjoyed the company of several who have signed up for this one on some pretty serious trips, If we get there, start out & the weather isn't cooperating we turn around & have a dock dinner, a few drinks, a good cigar, and a nights sleep listening to the waves lap on the hull.... no harm no foul

Pat

Moose posted 05-31-2009 11:22 AM ET (US)     Profile for Moose  Send Email to Moose     
Terry,

No, I won't be making this trip.

I finally received clearance from the boss, but another problem with my oil alarm going off last weekend is destroying things. I paid that Mercury dealer 3 miles south of us $215 to 'fix' the problem last fall, so now, after two hours of use since that 'fix', on to round two for the same problem. Based on their track record with the two previous problems they've 'fixed' this will take three separate visits to get it right... putting me about 30 miles west of Grand Haven when the alarm goes off the third time. To even consider crossing that lake I'd want to have a least a few trouble free uses under my belt to make sure they've finally got it right, and I'm not going to have an opportunity to use it more than, maybe, once between now and the 13th. So with discretion being the better part of valor...

K Albus,

Thanks for your efforts on this trip. Hopefully I'll be able to be involved in the next one.

Phatboy,

I'll be on the lookout for you and Brig when I get up to your water this summer.

Buckda,

You may be in trouble with your bets now, I've significantly changed the odds on a Mercury failure by pulling out.

prj,

I was looking forward to you showing us where the good ale is found in Milwaukee. Hopefully some other time we can throw back a few pints.

Have a fun & safe trip everyone.

prj posted 05-31-2009 10:05 PM ET (US)     Profile for prj  Send Email to prj     
It'll be my pleasure, Moose.

On Friday, I got back from 5 days boating and sleeping amongst the Apostle Islands in that big lake they call Superior. Even 37 degree water temps and NNE winds were undaunting for the prepared. I think you prudent mariners are certainly capable of a little 3 hour tour to Milwaukee given appropriate weather conditions.

By the by, those Apostles are a massively scaled grouping of incredibly remote and lonely rock outcroppings at this time of year. With widely spaced anchorages and NPS camp opportunities, that is a trip I'd expect you to consider, Dave B.


Buckda posted 06-01-2009 09:08 AM ET (US)     Profile for Buckda  Send Email to Buckda     
Been there, done that in my 15 in 2003.

David Pendleton posted 06-02-2009 12:45 AM ET (US)     Profile for David Pendleton  Send Email to David Pendleton     
And I have the pictures to prove it:

http://members.tcq.net/davepen/images/buckda.dil.jpg

David Pendleton posted 06-02-2009 12:46 AM ET (US)     Profile for David Pendleton  Send Email to David Pendleton     
Here's a somewhat warmer link...

http://members.tcq.net/davepen/images/buckda.dil.jpg

David Pendleton posted 06-02-2009 12:50 AM ET (US)     Profile for David Pendleton  Send Email to David Pendleton     
For whatever reason, the previous hotlink is getting mangled, so cut and paste my original one if you'd like to see the picture.

</hijack>

Phatboy posted 06-02-2009 09:33 AM ET (US)     Profile for Phatboy  Send Email to Phatboy     
So far, I just see K Albus and Buckda as confirmed on this trip. Anyone else planning on it?
cohasett73 posted 06-02-2009 09:56 AM ET (US)     Profile for cohasett73  Send Email to cohasett73     
I gotta do a no show, an uncle is celebrating a birthday that weekend.
I really was looking forward to the rondezvous but family comes first.
Tom from Rubicon
skred posted 06-02-2009 11:43 AM ET (US)     Profile for skred  Send Email to skred     
Well, I splashed my partially-restored 13 yesterday, and it passed shakedown, so I'll be making the treacherous 14-mile freeway ride to McKinley Marina, and join up with whoever manages to make it.... (I know PRJ will be there... I think I owe him a beer.)
BTW, I just read a blurb on the Great Lakes Distillery - producing locally distilled gin, vodka, and perhaps other spirits. Location is 6th & Virginia Streets - might be worth a stop/tour.... They were supposed to have gotten permission for providing "samples" at their premises - but if not, they point you toward the Harley-Davidson Museum - another attraction....


Ablewis posted 06-02-2009 03:50 PM ET (US)     Profile for Ablewis  Send Email to Ablewis     
I am still planning on fishing in the morning and then coming back to Lakeshore State Park around noon. I am not that familiar with the ramps in Milwaukee but will likely put in at McKinley (1750 N. Lincoln Memorial Drive) unless there is a ramp at the state park? Anyone still going out fishing that A.M.? If the water is rough, I may skip fishing in the Montauk.

Andy

K Albus posted 06-02-2009 04:38 PM ET (US)     Profile for K Albus  Send Email to K Albus     
If you are attending this event, please send me an email with your name, cell phone number, boat description (i.e., model and length), boat name/radio call sign, and a list of your passengers, if any. I will put together a list to be distributed to the captains. My email address is in my profile.

For the Michigan contingent, my suggested plan is as follows:
1. Leave Grand Haven at approximately 8:00 a.m. We can meet on the main lake, just past the pier heads and depart from there as a group. We should know within a few miles whether anybody is going to want to turn back due to wind or waves.
2. Proceed west across Lake Michigan along North parallel 43 degrees, 3 minutes.
3. If conditions are good, I'd like to travel at speed of approximately 25 to 30 mph. If conditions are excellent, I'd like to travel a little faster, but we'll have make sure everybody is willing and able to do so.
4. Since it looks like we'll only have 4 or 5 boats making the crossing, I think should we travel in a single group, with all boats maintaining visual contact with all other boats.
5. I would suggest that we use VHF channel 71 for boat-to-boat communications, and that all boats check in every half hour, on the half hours, to make sure that everybody is doing okay.
6. If anybody wants to turn back, the whole group should be informed. If somebody is turning back due to an emergency or due to mechanical troubles, or if somebody decides to turn back after we are more than a few miles out from Grand Haven, at least one other boat should accompany the returning boat.

Buckda posted 06-02-2009 04:46 PM ET (US)     Profile for Buckda  Send Email to Buckda     
Okay.

On that front, to make it work, I volunteer to be the designated "returner" - i.e. if someone in our group wants to turn back for any reason, I will abort mission and return with them for security.

If I want to turn back, someone else will have to step to the plate, although unless I'm having system failures, I am comfortable returning alone with the twin motors.

I believe that 25-30 MPH will be too fast for anyone in a Montauk in anything but greasy flat conditions. Personally, I like to cruise in typical chop at about 23-25 MPH.

I suggest we work this out ahead of time. Is your concern fuel efficiency?

K Albus posted 06-02-2009 04:57 PM ET (US)     Profile for K Albus  Send Email to K Albus     
My concern is primarily with making the trip in a reasonable amount of time. 23 to 25 mph is probably fine.

My best fuel economy is at about 25 mph, but I'm not concerned with my fuel economy or range on this trip. If anybody else is concerned with their fuel economy or range, please speak up.

One issue I forgot to mention in my previous post is that we should probably plan to make at least one or two stops on the crossing to allow time for anybody to answer nature's call, change their fuel tank, or just take a break. A couple of five or ten minute breaks should be sufficient.

K Albus posted 06-02-2009 05:02 PM ET (US)     Profile for K Albus  Send Email to K Albus     
I should have stated that my best fuel economy at cruising speed is at about 25 mph. My best overall fuel economy is at no wake speed, but I'm willing to sacrifice a few gallons of gas in order to make the trip in less than 40 hours.
Buckda posted 06-02-2009 05:19 PM ET (US)     Profile for Buckda  Send Email to Buckda     
On the 56 mile crossing of Lake Superior to Isle Royale, we typically make a stop at about 25 miles - or an hour into the crossing. You are correct - this is a good point to check gear, take a breather, etc. On an 80 mile crossing, I suggest we stop at mile 25 and 50. It is a good opportunity to take some photos, etc. Also fun to check depths - should be around 450-500 ft deep ad mid lake there.

If there are Montauks with classic 2-strokes in the group, they will likely need to stop at mile 45-50 to switch fuel tanks, but if they are running on 6-gallon tanks, that will have to happen sooner.

Phatboy -give me an e-mail and we can meet up and caravan over to Grand Haven from GR if you want.

Dave

Phatboy posted 06-02-2009 07:16 PM ET (US)     Profile for Phatboy  Send Email to Phatboy     
This all sounds great to me. I am running in a 17' Montauk. I have a 26 gallon tank and am strapping on 10 more gallons. I am hoping 36 gallons will be enough. If anyone doesn't think so, I will abort now. I just don't know what my mileage is. I have a 2002 90 horse Merc..

As for a caravan from GR, Buckda, my boat is already in Spring Lake and I will be staying there Friday night. Maybe we should meet on the little beach under the fountain across from the grand stands at 7:45? We can peak at each other’s boats, shake hands then hit it!

dfmcintyre posted 06-02-2009 09:05 PM ET (US)     Profile for dfmcintyre  Send Email to dfmcintyre     
Phatboy -

You should be able to attain at least 3mpg with that setup, probably closer to 3.5-4.0mpg.

Best - Don

cohasett73 posted 06-03-2009 08:43 AM ET (US)     Profile for cohasett73  Send Email to cohasett73     
It's gonna rain that weekend.So says Accuweather.
Tom from Rubicon
Buckda posted 06-03-2009 09:00 AM ET (US)     Profile for Buckda  Send Email to Buckda     
Tom -

Yes, I'll be watching the weather closely. Long-range predictions are notoriously inaccurate, but right now it is not looking great. (See previous comments higher up in the thread...read: June vs. August!!!)...anyway, we'll be keeping close watch.

Phatboy -
Sounds good. I'm still making trailer repairs this week and need to make reservations at Barrett Boat Works to launch the boat and store the trailer for the weekend.

Dave

Phatboy posted 06-05-2009 08:27 AM ET (US)     Profile for Phatboy  Send Email to Phatboy     
As of this morning, the weather forcast is looking better for the 13th and 14th. I just checked Weather.com.
K Albus posted 06-05-2009 10:34 AM ET (US)     Profile for K Albus  Send Email to K Albus     
Although there is still a good chance that most of the boats making the crossing from Michigan will break down at the farthest point from land, at least we no longer need to worry about being eaten by the monster: http://weeklyworldnews.com/headlines/2614/ us-navy-captures-lake-michigan-monster/
Hoosier posted 06-06-2009 10:24 PM ET (US)     Profile for Hoosier  Send Email to Hoosier     
Ya know, if we actually pull this off, we ought to have some Tee Shirts. Any one know of a Tee Shirt shop near McKinley Marina that would be able to make up some ?
Ablewis posted 06-07-2009 12:03 PM ET (US)     Profile for Ablewis  Send Email to Ablewis     
After several break offs on my last fishing expedition, I was tempted to go with steel leaders. I knew it was a monster, but by the looks of that photo, that wouldn't have done me a lot of good.

Andy

stevesalick posted 06-08-2009 11:12 AM ET (US)     Profile for stevesalick  Send Email to stevesalick     
Important News!

I just heard that there IS a festival going on this weekend at the Lakefront Festival Grounds. It is Pridefest. If any of you are interested, Google "Pridefest Milwaukee". From past experience, I thought that you cannot gain access to the area where the small boat beach is located at Lakeshore State Park during an event at the festival grounds. This led me to call Tom Kroeger, the Superintendent of the park to inquire. His contact info is listed at the bottom of the link for the park http://www.dnr.state.wi.us/Org/land/parks/specific/lakeshore/ Anyway, I was mistaken. He said even during a festival, access is available. HOWEVER, number 1, the small boat beach is for non-motorized boats. number 2, they have an event planned for Saturday, "Gathering Waters Festival". Kayak and Canoe demonstrations, rock climbing, and what have you. It is being put on by "Friends of the Park" http://www.friendslsp.org/ Tom was a real nice guy, he said he might have made an exemption for us to meet there if there was not a festival at the beach that day. There docks are all booked up as well. He suggested calling Jeff Phillips (414 765-8641) at Discovery World which is right in that area. They have docks but said he did not know there availability. They are closed on Monday so I will call tomorrow and inquire. Otherwise, I would suggest, meeting up the Milwaukee River at "The Milwaukee Ale House" or further up the River. As an example, just North of Wisconsin Avenue (near "John Hawk's Pub). The river walk offers many areas to tie up. This might be easier than trying to meet at McKinnley Marina. The marina is quite large, not sure where to meet there. Others from Wisconsin familiar with the lakefront and river might have a some thoughts on this.

I think Mr. Albus should make the call. Hoping to meet all of you between 11:00 AM and Noon. If not, hoping to meet up with the Wisconsin Folks around 11:00 at the meeting place to be determined.

All the best!

Steve Salick

Phatboy posted 06-08-2009 11:43 AM ET (US)     Profile for Phatboy  Send Email to Phatboy     
Pride Fest? That's great! I'm pulling into town with another guy (we are both married to women) and we are going to be dude magnets!
K Albus posted 06-08-2009 12:16 PM ET (US)     Profile for K Albus  Send Email to K Albus     
Apparently the websites I checked didn't want to advertise Pridefest. I swear I didn't know it was going on. I'll also be pulling into town with another guy on my boat (and we both have wives as well).

Is there any other beach area where we could meet before proceeding up the river? How about just north of McKinley Marina at Lake Park? Can you pull boats up to the beach there? If not, why don't we meet just south of McKinley Marina inside the breakwall, so that the locals can show us the way up the river?

Phatboy posted 06-08-2009 12:22 PM ET (US)     Profile for Phatboy  Send Email to Phatboy     
Anybody know where I can get some good tickets to "Naked Boys Singing" at Turner Hall on Saturday night??

Sorry, I'll stop now. :-) This is too funny.

stevesalick posted 06-08-2009 02:31 PM ET (US)     Profile for stevesalick  Send Email to stevesalick     
I assumed there would be some jokes flying around regarding Pridefest. I just didn't want to be the one starting them. Okay, if you google "Pridefest Milwaukee", try hitting the "I'm feeling Lucky" option!

The guy with Lakeshore State Park that I spoke with thought you would need to check with Milwaukee County to get permission to meet at a beach. This isn't like Michigan you know, beautiful beaches everywhere : ) I honestly don't think that option would pan out. Tomorrow, I will call the guy at Discovery World Museum and check on the availability of their docks. It's a beautiful location. It's where they dock the schooner, the "Dennis Sullivan"

Outside of the Marina would be fine, otherwise navigation up the river a little ways would not be difficult. Try google maps, "Milwaukee Ale House, Milwaukee, WI" On the satellite view, you'll see you would just go under the big bridge (Hoan Bridge), go to the right headed North, bear right, and the Milwaukee Ale House will be on your right. I'm just not sure how much dock space they will have available. Rafting might be necessary. Fine with me.

But, whatever, either way is fine or maybe we will have more ideas.

Steve

prj posted 06-08-2009 02:45 PM ET (US)     Profile for prj  Send Email to prj     
Hey, what can I say? We're a welcoming city.

Excellent research there Steve. Though I'll admit, it may have been a bit more hilarious to show up and beach our man-laden boats for Pridefest. Hilarity would have ensued!

I think we should consider the same basic location, without committing to the inner harbor beaching. We dock at the very public Discovery World south dock which I've never seen more than 1 or 2 vessels at. To the best of my knowledge, the only official user of this long reach is the Dennis Sullivan educational replica sailing vessel. If we're hassled there, which would surprise me, we'll simply drift off and raft alongside one another with an anchor boat.

http://www.bing.com/maps/default.aspx?v=2&FORM=LMLTSN&cp=43.03595~-87. 896145&style=h&lvl=18&tilt=-90&dir=0&alt=-1000&phx=0&phy=0&phscl=1& encType=1

This inner harbor area should be quite calm and comfortable for rafting and waiting. Lets wait and hear what Steve reports regarding Discovery World's official position.

I'm unaware of another beach in the area that we could use. That beach visible north of McKinley is too exposed and receives a healthy ground swell most times.

I'm equally surprised by the "non-motorized boats" boats restriction. While I know this type of ordinance occurs on particularly sensitive and often small water bodies, it seems out of place here. A quick search yields nothing regarding this restriction.

K Albus posted 06-08-2009 02:55 PM ET (US)     Profile for K Albus  Send Email to K Albus     
The Discovery World website states that free public docking is available. See: http://www.discoveryworld.org/visitorInfo.php#docks
stevesalick posted 06-08-2009 02:55 PM ET (US)     Profile for stevesalick  Send Email to stevesalick     
I'm half way wondering if I should call and get permission to use the dock by Discovery World or maybe we should just meet there. Sometimes, you are better off not asking.

Any thoughts on this philosophy? Kevin? You're the attorney.

stevesalick posted 06-08-2009 02:56 PM ET (US)     Profile for stevesalick  Send Email to stevesalick     
I think you just answered my question.

Thanks.


K Albus posted 06-08-2009 03:24 PM ET (US)     Profile for K Albus  Send Email to K Albus     
Let's make Discovery World the initial rendezvous point in Milwaukee. The Michigan group should be able to make there sometime between 11:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m.
home Aside posted 06-08-2009 08:42 PM ET (US)     Profile for home Aside  Send Email to home Aside     
I won't be able to make this one, as much as I'd like to, Graduation Party Season is also upon us a My nephew's Party is this weekend....I will be doing some local boating..Have fun all...be safe

Pat

Ablewis posted 06-08-2009 09:46 PM ET (US)     Profile for Ablewis  Send Email to Ablewis     
O.K. now you scared off Pat. I am still planning on being there and will monitor the site for a specific location but the docks at Discovery World makes sense to me. Hmmmm "Discovery World" & Pride Fest...what am I getting myself into?

Andy

stevesalick posted 06-08-2009 10:14 PM ET (US)     Profile for stevesalick  Send Email to stevesalick     
My girlfriend works at a company that is offering discounts on tickets for Pride Fest. If you have any interest, just post your reply ; )

And Pat, don't be making these lame excuses just because you are scared.

You can actually see Pride Fest from Discovery World. I think it will be amazing!

Phatboy posted 06-08-2009 10:55 PM ET (US)     Profile for Phatboy  Send Email to Phatboy     
The guy I have riding with me is getting scared. When we take a break in the middle of Lake Michigan, I think that will be a great time to tell him he is my "first mate" and it is time to "swab the poop deck."

Sorry, I said I would stop and I just can't help it. O.K., now I am done.

Pat, I was hoping to meet you on this trip. If I remember correctly, you were also an NMU graduate?

David Pendleton posted 06-08-2009 11:09 PM ET (US)     Profile for David Pendleton  Send Email to David Pendleton     
All the rendezvous threads should be this fun...

I would have bailed after they caught the monster; you'd be a damned fool to think there only one of those things out there...

Buckda posted 06-09-2009 10:05 AM ET (US)     Profile for Buckda  Send Email to Buckda     
Crunching on this one - I have two challenges:
1.) Repair of some damage to the arch that Lake Erie served up this spring. I'm working with a qualified TIG welder in the area, but not sure if this can happen in time.
2.) While I had the boat off the trailer for some bunk repairs and re-wiring the lighting, I noticed a leak in the rear seal on one of the wheel hubs. I towed the boat about 1 miles last night to have the welder look and provide an estimate, and it ran warm, so I need to investigate further.

The third influencing factor behind both of these is that I am a new homeowner. The repair to the arch is in the budget. The hub repair (or whatever is needed), is not - though I doubt it will be an expensive thing, the primary commodity at this point is TIME.

Wouldn't want to miss PrideFest. Those guys (and gals) know how to throw a party.

Phatboy posted 06-09-2009 02:41 PM ET (US)     Profile for Phatboy  Send Email to Phatboy     
Come on Buckda! You can do it!

As for the "we need a T-Shirt" comment a while ago, I am thinking something with lots of rainbows. "Whaler crossing-Grand Haven to Milwaukee 2009." Next year, "Whaler Crossing-Milwaukee to Grand Haven 2010."

"I survived the Crossing, The Lake Michigan Monster & Pride Fest 2009!"

Something like that.

K Albus posted 06-09-2009 05:47 PM ET (US)     Profile for K Albus  Send Email to K Albus     
Here's one proposal for a t-shirt design: http://www.customink.com/lab/?F=shirt2&E=kalbus%40gillarylaw.com
MarthaB posted 06-09-2009 09:03 PM ET (US)     Profile for MarthaB  Send Email to MarthaB     
Bumper stickers are next
skred posted 06-10-2009 12:09 AM ET (US)     Profile for skred  Send Email to skred     
How about establishing a particular vhf channel to contact each other?
Phatboy posted 06-10-2009 07:45 AM ET (US)     Profile for Phatboy  Send Email to Phatboy     
Channel 71?

From K Albus earlier (see number 5):

For the Michigan contingent, my suggested plan is as follows:
1. Leave Grand Haven at approximately 8:00 a.m. We can meet on the main lake, just past the pier heads and depart from there as a group. We should know within a few miles whether anybody is going to want to turn back due to wind or waves.
2. Proceed west across Lake Michigan along North parallel 43 degrees, 3 minutes.
3. If conditions are good, I'd like to travel at speed of approximately 25 to 30 mph. If conditions are excellent, I'd like to travel a little faster, but we'll have make sure everybody is willing and able to do so.
4. Since it looks like we'll only have 4 or 5 boats making the crossing, I think should we travel in a single group, with all boats maintaining visual contact with all other boats.
5. I would suggest that we use VHF channel 71 for boat-to-boat communications, and that all boats check in every half hour, on the half hours, to make sure that everybody is doing okay.
6. If anybody wants to turn back, the whole group should be informed. If somebody is turning back due to an emergency or due to mechanical troubles, or if somebody decides to turn back after we are more than a few miles out from Grand Haven, at least one other boat should accompany the returning boat.

Ablewis posted 06-10-2009 09:16 AM ET (US)     Profile for Ablewis  Send Email to Ablewis     
We look forward to your arrival. Word on the street has it that all these posts from the Manly Men in Michigan (There's your bumper sticker)has created a firestorm of Boston Whaler purchases. You might have quite the welcome!

Andy

PeteB88 posted 06-10-2009 09:42 AM ET (US)     Profile for PeteB88  Send Email to PeteB88     
Who's signed up/committed to this voyage?

K Albus posted 06-10-2009 09:51 AM ET (US)     Profile for K Albus  Send Email to K Albus     
In from Michigan:
K Albus
Phatboy
Hoosier

In from Wisconsin:
prj
stevesalick
skred
Ablewis

Out:
Buckda
L H G

Ablewis posted 06-10-2009 07:51 PM ET (US)     Profile for Ablewis  Send Email to Ablewis     
If Buckda and LHG are "out" does that mean they will be in Milwaukee?
K Albus posted 06-10-2009 08:29 PM ET (US)     Profile for K Albus  Send Email to K Albus     
Buckda is not fully out yet. As for L H G, I'll let him speak for himself.
Wiscbw posted 06-10-2009 11:48 PM ET (US)     Profile for Wiscbw  Send Email to Wiscbw     
I plan to fish in the morning and try to meet up with the group around noon at the Discovery Center.
Besides channel 71, is there a secret code, do we need to wear costumes?
K Albus posted 06-11-2009 09:05 AM ET (US)     Profile for K Albus  Send Email to K Albus     
I have reviewed several weather sites, including www.weather.gov , www.weather.com , and www.accuweather.com , and the forecast looks good with only a slight chance of rain or a thunderstorm on Saturday. All of these sites indicate light winds for Grand Haven and Milwaukee on both Saturday and Sunday.

The one "outlier" that worries me is the mid-lake wind and wave forecast on the NOAA website, http://weather.noaa.gov/cgi-bin/fmtbltn.pl?file=forecasts/marine/ great_lakes/lm/lmz874.txt , which indicates 1 to 3 foot waves for the return trip on Sunday. This forecast is directly contradicted by other NOAA forecasts. For instance, if you go to this page: http://forecast.weather.gov/MapClick.php?CityName=Grand+Haven&state=MI& site=GRR&textField1=43.0553&textField2=-86.2242&e=0 , and scroll down to the "Detailed Point Forecast" with the embedded Google Map, you can click anywhere on Lake Michigan for a wind and wave forecast. In this case, if you click your way all the way across between Grand Haven and Milwaukee there is no indication of any waves in excess of 1 foot.

As of right now, I would consider this trip a "go" from the Michigan side. If any of the other Michigan boaters feels otherwise, please let me know as soon as possible because I would need to cancel my hotel reservation by 3:00 p.m. today.

prj posted 06-11-2009 10:18 AM ET (US)     Profile for prj  Send Email to prj     
Come on Kevin, you didn't get Ablewis's hilarious play on words?

Forecast looks great and I'm really looking forward to some boating this Saturday.

K Albus posted 06-11-2009 10:46 AM ET (US)     Profile for K Albus  Send Email to K Albus     
Yes, I did, and I responded in kind.
K Albus posted 06-11-2009 10:50 AM ET (US)     Profile for K Albus  Send Email to K Albus     
By the way, I hope Dave (Buckda) can take a joke.
Phatboy posted 06-11-2009 12:53 PM ET (US)     Profile for Phatboy  Send Email to Phatboy     
I am cocked, locked and ready to rock (Ted Nugent)!! Believe me, I won't use that phrase this weekend. Anyway, I am all packed up (I won't use that either) and still a go and looking forward to it. If we get some weather on Sunday, heading back to MI, it should be at our backs so it will actually make the trip more adventurous and fun!

Surrender the Booty Lads!! (Sorry, I won't use that either).

By the way, K Albus, I love the T-Shirt! I made a couple changes to it, but ran out of time to post it. I removed the dragons and replaced them with a triangle on one side and handcuffs on the other side. Very cute.

Ablewis posted 06-11-2009 01:18 PM ET (US)     Profile for Ablewis  Send Email to Ablewis     
Perhaps some time at Discovery World would help LHG sort out his indifference?
Ablewis posted 06-11-2009 01:42 PM ET (US)     Profile for Ablewis  Send Email to Ablewis     
Wiscbw,

I just sent you an e-mail. If it takes meeting in Milwaukee to finally meet....so be it. There are at least a few boats that will be fishing that morning.

Andy

K Albus posted 06-11-2009 04:54 PM ET (US)     Profile for K Albus  Send Email to K Albus     
The mid-lake wind and wave forecast has changed again, for the second time today and about eighth time this week. It's now calling for NE winds 10-15 kts. and 1 to 2 foot waves on Saturday, and E winds 10-15 kts. with 1 to 2 foot waves on Sunday. I think we're still a "go" with this forecast.
Phatboy posted 06-11-2009 05:05 PM ET (US)     Profile for Phatboy  Send Email to Phatboy     
I'm still in. I wish it would turn and be a West wind. Thanks for the update!
dfmcintyre posted 06-11-2009 09:12 PM ET (US)     Profile for dfmcintyre  Send Email to dfmcintyre     
Sounds like fun, however I'll be sitting this one out, out of country.

Don

Kumiega posted 06-11-2009 10:11 PM ET (US)     Profile for Kumiega  Send Email to Kumiega     
I would trust this weather forecast. There is big money in Chicago paying for this service this weekend. NOODS Regatta. Therefore, this will be updated quickly if the model changes.

http://www.sailflow.com/windandwhere.iws?regionID=142&Isection=Weather+Bulletin&weatherBulletinID=37

Have fun it looks like you have a nice weekend.

K Albus posted 06-12-2009 08:47 AM ET (US)     Profile for K Albus  Send Email to K Albus     
The mid-lake forecast has changed once again, this time for the better:

SATURDAY
NORTHEAST WINDS 5 TO 10 KT BECOMING NORTH. CHANCE OF
SHOWERS. WAVES 1 FT OR LESS.

SUNDAY
EAST WINDS 5 TO 10 KT BECOMING NORTHEAST. WAVES 1 FT OR
LESS.

The near-shore forecasts are similar. The only potential problems appears to be a slight chance of showers on Saturday morning. It looks like we're a go.

stevesalick posted 06-12-2009 09:16 AM ET (US)     Profile for stevesalick  Send Email to stevesalick     
I look forward to meeting you Michigan Whaler's. Have a good trip over! Should things change, (weather once again) and you decide against crossing, give one of us Wisconsin Whaler's a call. We then will convene at a local pub to commiserate!
K Albus posted 06-12-2009 10:49 PM ET (US)     Profile for K Albus  Send Email to K Albus     
The mid-lake forecast has taken a dramatic turn for the worse:

SATURDAY
NORTHEAST WINDS 10 TO 20 KT. SHOWERS LIKELY...MAINLY
IN THE MORNING. WAVES 2 TO 4 FT SUBSIDING TO 1 TO 3 FT IN THE
AFTERNOON.

This forecast has changed several times per day over the past couple of days.

We'll have to play it by ear on Saturday morning.

PeteB88 posted 06-12-2009 11:18 PM ET (US)     Profile for PeteB88  Send Email to PeteB88     
Where are you guys leaving from and what time? Maybe I'll wander down to the dock and say hi in the morning...

88

K Albus posted 06-13-2009 04:38 AM ET (US)     Profile for K Albus  Send Email to K Albus     
And now we're back to a reasonable mid-lake forecast.

TODAY
NORTHEAST WINDS 5 TO 10 KT. RAIN THROUGH MID MORNING...
THEN CHANCE OF RAIN LATE THIS MORNING. SLIGHT CHANCE OF SHOWERS
THIS AFTERNOON. WAVES 1 FT OR LESS.

TONIGHT
NORTHEAST WINDS 5 TO 10 KT. WAVES 1 FT OR LESS.

SUNDAY
NORTH WINDS 5 TO 10 KT BACKING TO WEST. WAVES 1 FT OR
LESS.

Pete - We're supposed to be leaving from Barrett Boat Works at about 7:45 a.m.

Buckda posted 06-13-2009 01:25 PM ET (US)     Profile for Buckda  Send Email to Buckda     
Just heard from Kevin and the group made it across just fine. Glass smooth conditions and about 3 1/2 hours to cross.
Kumiega posted 06-13-2009 02:46 PM ET (US)     Profile for Kumiega  Send Email to Kumiega     
To be supportive and helpful.

I would leave early. I would leave at 7 or 8. The lake will be flat.

http://www.sailflow.com/windandwhere.iws?regionID=142®ionProductID=30&day=0&timeoffset=14&selected_model_id=

By 4 pm they are predicting the wind will pick up to 12-16 on the Michigan shore. This wind prediction would result in waves on the Michigan Shore.

http://www.sailflow.com/windandwhere.iws?regionID=142®ionProductID=30&day=0&timeoffset=17&selected_model_id=

Again this forecast will be fairly accurate since they get paid to be right for the key regetta weekend. This is also the data pilots pay for so it is normally very accurate for wind.

Therefore, the earlier the better based on this data.

PeteB88 posted 06-13-2009 04:29 PM ET (US)     Profile for PeteB88  Send Email to PeteB88     
Excellent, I wish I could have gone along - maybe next year.

PB88

stevesalick posted 06-14-2009 12:22 AM ET (US)     Profile for stevesalick  Send Email to stevesalick     
Hot off the press!

http://s644.photobucket.com/albums/uu169/stevesalick/?albumview=slideshow

Wish I knew how to post these links properly, if someone wants to send me an email to enlighten me, great!

The "Proposed Adventure - Boston Whaler Rendezvous in Milwaukee", was a great success, at least in my mind, I hope others too. The weather on Saturday couldn't have been better, hoping the same for tomorrow as some of you guys still have to get back to Michigan, but at this point it looks like clear sailing all the way.

Donna and I really enjoyed meeting all of you, seeing your boats, having a really nice lunch at the Milwaukee Ale House, touring the city a bit, and getting pooped on by the seagulls.

So, I guess we'll see you all next year in Grand Haven. Let us know when and we will trailer the boat over there : )

Steve Salick & Donna Shefky

home Aside posted 06-14-2009 01:01 AM ET (US)     Profile for home Aside  Send Email to home Aside     
Sounds like everyone had a safe cruise over & a great time upon arrival....Great Photos Thanks for posting here's the link

http://s644.photobucket.com/albums/uu169/stevesalick/ ?albumview=slideshow

Wishing I'd been able to make it...have a safe return

Pat

PeteB88 posted 06-14-2009 01:11 AM ET (US)     Profile for PeteB88  Send Email to PeteB88     
When do you guys think you will be back to Grand Haven? Perhaps we'll meet you if possible - what channel will you be monitoring? Are you all going to Barrett's?

Check back.

88

skred posted 06-14-2009 02:12 PM ET (US)     Profile for skred  Send Email to skred     
Many thanks to the brave mariners who crossed the big pond to visit us in Milwaukee. Special thanks to the dedicated organizers. It was a truly enjoyable get-together. One of the nicest perks of events like this is to be able to put faces with names, and get to share Whaler adventures. I - for one - would like to see this event become an annual occurrence.
Buckda posted 06-14-2009 02:36 PM ET (US)     Profile for Buckda  Send Email to Buckda     
Heard from Kevin. The Michigan contingent made it back safely.
Hoosier posted 06-14-2009 09:41 PM ET (US)     Profile for Hoosier  Send Email to Hoosier     
Kathy and I want to thank everyone for a great time. That's one more we can check off our Bucket List.

Today's crossing was surreal, the biggest waves were from the other boats. We stopped at about 50 miles out, right in the shipping lane and two Lakers passed us, one south bound and one north bound. We also saw the Lake Express going west about 8 miles north of us. Cool.

Next year we need to make up Tee-Shirts.....

prj posted 06-15-2009 11:36 AM ET (US)     Profile for prj  Send Email to prj     
Seems as though a great time was had by all in attendance. Many thanks to Steve for putting together a high quality slideshow documenting the event. Always nice to have a professional behind the lens and it shows. Also thanks to Kevin for putting the event together, great opportunity to meet some new people and go boating.

The weather was absolutely spectacular and Milwaukee was representing. In attempting to view this with the eyes of an outsider, the city has done an exceptional job of recreating the former industrial riverfront as a recreational and entertainment asset. Museums, restaurants, bars and microbreweries are interspersed amongst offices and condominiums in converted warehouse and heavy timber buildings. The entire lined by slips and berths occupied by some commercial vessels, but primarily leisure and tourist boats.

Lunch at the Milwaukee Ale House was as expected and stated early on: Mediocre. Yet the atmosphere and environment was also as billed; vibrant and exciting with a constant parade of mid day revelers in classic Milwaukee form, drunk, loud and friendly.

I enjoyed meeting each of you and renewing at least one friendship with a man who can't keep the same boat for long.

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