Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Chicago Bound

The Big day had finally arrived, we were on our way to Chicago.  With the winds from the previous night dieing down, Anna and I consulted the weather and dock master and made the decision to make way.  It looked like we would have a light day in the morning, but the wind would soon be back and were forecast to blow for the next few days.  If Anna and I were going to see the Blue Angels, today would have to be the day.  In the first hour of the trip Anna and I felt we may have made a drastic mistake.  The channel leaving the harbor was a washing machine of waves which tossed Blue in all directions.  In our wildest dreams we had never thought it would have been that bad.  If we had known, there was no way I would have left.  Once through the cut Anna suggested we turn around, but the prospect of having to take Blue back through what we had just done was more than I wanted to do we were safer in the open water.  She agreed and we buckled down for a wild ride.  One of our friends called us on the radio and said after watching our little boat get tossed through the channel, they had decided to stick it out another day or two and they would catch up to us later not a bad decision we thought.  Andrew was smart having decided to watch us go through the cut before making his decision.  The Monkey Girl on the other hand had left at the same time as us that morning, Anna and I felt for Bill and Laura  they had friends on board whom did not have much experience boating.  We called to him and asked him how it went, his response was that it had been some quiet on board as they entered and made way through the channel.  He agreed as well that it would have to be an emergency to willfully transit the opening again today.  Once on the outside the seas calmed down and Anna and I got a chance to put the boat back together.  We had made it though pretty well, but for the first time our table in the salon was knocked on its side.  Thankfully there was no damage to the table but an old lantern we had secured to the top shelf of the salon had come free and had smashed into pieces.  I spent a long time that morning wondering if I had been made a poor decisions with regards to our safety on Blue.  That channel had really shaken me up and taken both of us off guard. None of us had dreamed it would have been as bad as it was.  Anna and I have always taken comfort in the knowledge that Blue, if piloted properly is rated to withstand 15 foot seas in up to 40 kts of wind.  It goes without saying that neither of us ever want to experience that ride, but once again we were left with a sense of pride that our little tug charged through the situation and delivered her crew to safety. With each experience we have, which have been many on this lake, Anna and I feel more and more strongly towards the safety and security one has when traveling in a Nordic Tug.

We could finally see the Chicago Skyline.  What a sight!

The first plane a big Bomber could be seen off Blue's bow.  We had made it in time.

The Chicago Harbor was filled with boats all waiting for the big show.

Anna and I couldn't believe it when this helicopter flew upside down.  This guy was nuts.

The sound when this big transport plan buzzed out heads was deafening.

It was so amazing to see these planes perform with the backdrop of Chicago behind them.

Finally Fat Albert arrived to announce the arrival of the Blue Angels.

These guys are just amazing to watch.

What a sight.
Two Jets screaming at each other head on.
We thought the transport plain was loud, these guys shook the boat as they buzzed the crowd.
What a day and what a show.  Anna and I thought it was a great way to arrive in  Chicago.