Our Sailboat is a Sailboat Again!

So, for those of you that are following along on our Facebook and Instagram accounts, you already know that WE’VE GOT OUR MAST BACK!

We’re just a little excited about this. Just a little. Ok … actually a lot. We’re so close to being able to go sailing.

Family Preparing Sailboat for Longterm Cruising

We haven’t sailed this boat since October – that’s MUCH TOO LONG. I’ve gone out a few times with other local boats, but I’m so excited to actually be able to take Mosaic out soon and see the wind fill those beautiful new sails that we spent a bunch of money on.

In order to get our mast back, we had to take the boat from our home slip back downriver to the boatyard where it had been painted. The crane was scheduled for Thursday so we had to take the boat to the yard Wednesday evening after work.

The whole process of moving the boat to and from the yard is pretty complex: driving two cars to the yard to stage one of them there, back to the boat, move the boat, and then take the one car back to the yard again to get the second car. Phew. It took a long time.  And, on Wednesday evening, we also got stuck in traffic then after staging one of the cars at the boatyard.

Trip to the Boatyard

So, a week and a half ago, on Wednesday evening we weren’t able to leave the slip until about 7:30. Thankfully, that was the day before summer solstice so we had light pretty late into the evening.

The river route is 15 nautical miles and, going mostly with the current, we made the trip in a little over 2 hours. We were treated to one of the most beautiful sunsets and being on the water at sunset and during twilight is just magical.

We also were treated to quite the lightning show on the on the eastern horizon just as we were pulling in to dock at the boatyard. Despite the falling darkness and the distraction of the lightning, Brenden docked the boat beautifully.

Unfortunately, we weren’t allowed to stay on the boat while at the boatyard so we actually got a hotel room for a few nights which was a blast for the kiddos.

Family of Four Prepping to Cruise on our Sailboat

Family of Four Prepping to Cruise on our Sailboat

Family of Four Prepping to Cruise on our Sailboat

Family of Four Prepping to Cruise on our Sailboat

Family of Four Prepping to Cruise on our Sailboat

Mast Stepping

On Thursday, the kids and I headed back to the yard to see the mast go in. Our rigger was there directing the show and everything went quickly and smoothly. It’s really crazy how fast it goes once things get rolling.

Mast going back into the sailboat

Mast going back into the sailboat

Sailboat with mast

Bringing Mosaic Home, All in One Piece

On Saturday we got up and checked out of our hotel. We cast off from the boatyard at about 1:30 and, going against the current, it took us about 3 hours to get back to the marina.

I took the helm for the majority of the return trip and even took us through the opening of the Columbia River railroad bridge and then under the I5 bridge. We only had about 5 feet of clearance on the I5 bridge so that was a bit nerve-wracking, but everything went just fine.

Kids on the Sailboat

Kids on the Sailboat

View off the Sailboat

So What’s Next?

We sanded and touch-up painted the boom ourselves (to save the $1,600) so we needed to get that back to the boat from Brenden’s parents’ backyard where we’d painted it the previous week.

sailboat boom paint job

So we brought that back Monday night after work and got that all installed. The paint on the boom is just a stop-gap to try to avoid any further corrosion or rust. We will likely have to pull the boom down and sand and paint it again in another year or two, but for right now we decided this was one area that we could choose not to spend the money.

Butch, our rigger, spent some time on the boat during the week and got new winches installed as we wanted to have self-tailing winches on the mast.

sailboat winch

This weekend we’re planning to really buckle down and get some of the wiring projects done and hopefully get some of the new electronics installed so that we can actually get to a point of having a fully functional sailboat again. Then, possibly the following weekend, we might be able to get her out and get the sails up! Fingers crossed!

Ultimately, I’m super happy with the progress we’ve made over the past couple weeks. The kids also did really well with the two boat trips and really had fun using the boat, even if just motoring. It was good for them to get to experience the way things need to happen when we’re out in the river, off the dock, especially with just Brenden and I aboard without any other extra adults. They both did great and we had a lot of fun.

Thanks for reading and wish us luck with boat projects over the next week or so! Adios! ~Rachel

family on sailboat prepping to travel

2 thoughts on “Our Sailboat is a Sailboat Again!

  1. I’m loving watching your progress and always wishing you well. You are very methodical and hard workers. You are a delightful family. Thank you for sharing your joys – and frustrations – with us!

    Boatergirl jeri


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