Sunday, June 14, 2015

Just Messin'Around in Boats...again.

Finally, a beautiful Saturday here on the Coast of Illinois.

Oh sure, from April 1st until November 30th there is always the threat of 700% humidity. And lately we have the added fun of attack by 3D, ultrasonic radar enhanced green, red and orange bands of rain with occasional lightening bolts and tiny spinning cartoon tornadoes.

But this past Saturday had a minimal amount of danger and we drove Blue Sky down to Rend Lake to crash the Midwest Messabout at Rend Lake. (I should note that we only went for the day, gawked at some beautifully crafted boats then beat it home before the storms rolled in. We didn't really get to talk with many attendees, but as usual, those we did talk with were delightful.)

For those of you new to Coast of Illinois – a small boat messabout is a gathering of small boat enthusiasts. Usually these boats are handmade. They can be powered by sail, motor or human. There is usually camping, a potluck, much discussion of epoxy, many tall tales and then everyone puts their boats in and takes pictures of one another sailing. I personally would love to see some water gun battles, perhaps a re-enactment of Mutiny on the Bounty and then a rip-roaring game of Beer Pirates, where we quiet sailboats cruise past the floating heads of pontoon boaters and grab the beers from their outstretched-to-protect-their-beers-from-lake-water- hands.

Maybe next year. 

We arrived to see this gorgeous boat being set up. The Libby Rose is the fifth boat it's owner has built.
Here she is at sail during a brief bit of sun.

I swear, it is more overcast than sunny but still a great day.

Life vests were the order of the day. Here a sailor is hoisting the gaff rig.
This is a gaff rig or as I prefer to call it - a san-pan sail, because it reminds me of the boats in the book Ping!

I have no idea what type of boat this is, beside beautiful. (oh wait, just found the info - it is a Skiff America20!)
Sailing. Seriously sailing. I left this uncropped so you could get the full effect of the waves and the wind in the sail.
I believe they are either searching for enemy submarines or preparing to bring in the big shark. The head, the tail, the whole damn fish.
Who wouldn't want their own tug boat?
Taking pictures of people taking pictures. So fun!
If anyone from the Rend Lake Messabout recognizes their boat here, please contact me at I would be happy to send you a copy of the pictures. And if anyone happened to get some snaps of a blue, Bermuda rigged sloop named Blue Skies, please contact me. I would also love pics. It is surprisingly difficult to get a picture of your own boat at sail!

THANKS! To Tom B, who sent these 'action shots' of Blue Skies! 
Looks like smooth sailing from here on out little buddy...

See that spray at the bow? Well, the next one soaks me.

Heeling is my favorite!

Love how the main sail is curved here!

I have also added a new video to the Sailing page here. It incorporates all that I love about being on the sailboat, the sounds of the wind, the sails and the splashes.


AND THIS JUST IN!!! Midwest Mariner picked up this issue of Coast of Illinois! Please check out the link: MidwestMariner


  1. What fun! Love the Libby Rose, very nice boat. Hope somebody sends one of yours, love to see that!

    1. it was such a great day, wish we had gone for the entire event! and WOOHOO - one of the attendees did get photos! see above!!

    2. Sweeeeet! Beautiful shots of a beautiful boat!

  2. The sailboats are beautiful! I love seeing the video from the deck of your sloop. The sails are lovely!

    1. thanks so much Mo! I am surprised, every time we go out, how much I enjoy the sound of the wind in the sails.

  3. This looks like fun. I want to take my husband to see it when we retire. He is an avid sailor.

    1. It is such fun Pat. If you are ever in the Midwest - check out the Indiana messabout in September. Rend Lake is usually in June.


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