One might wonder why someone who lives in Brooklyn, New York would want to sail on some obscure lake in Pennsylvania. In fact, I sail plenty from Brooklyn’s Jamaica Bay, Hudson River, and the Long Island Sound—sometimes as crew, sometimes renting—which can get expensive. At the Pocono Boathouse, rentals, storage and repairs cost a fraction of what they would in the city. New York may have more people, but the Poconos have more people with boats.
Hooking up a boat trailer should not be much harder than hooking up a bike rack I thought. Indeed, it wasn’t hard, just very heavy. After a few such hook ups I began to feel like I was getting a hernia—if I didn’t have one already. As usual, Tom came to the rescue. He repaired the lifttongue jack that lowers and raises the front part of the trailer that connects with the car’s hitch, and voila, superhuman strength was no longer needed. Backing up a trailer, on the other hand, takes some time to get used to—I got some scratches on my Subaru to prove it—but no matter how long it took, in the end my boat hit the water. Having your boat with you from the start makes your trip wholesome—the journey begins the moment you turn on the engine.
I decided to make my maiden trailer sailing voyage to Tobyhanna Lake— mostly because of its catchy name. Tobyhanna is a Native American word for “a stream whose banks are fringed with alder.” It sounded more inviting than Lake Gouldsboro, for example, which was second on my list. The third and fourth lakes I plan to visit are Lake Beltzville, and the “jewel of the Poconos” —Lake Wallenpaupack. Most lakes in the Poconos are man-made Atlantises. Created to control flooding and in some cases to generate electricity, they conceal preexisting sites deep underwater. In the case of Tobyhanna, the lake water covers an old artillery range.
The Sunfish is a remarkably stable sailing dinghy, but it’s still a dinghy. When the wind is stronger than 10 knots it begins to heel hard. Until recently I’d avoided strong winds, but one windy day on a tiny lake near my house I decided I needed to try and tame the boat. You can’t call yourself a serious explorer if you’re only exploring in six-knot winds.
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POTTER WITH A LATEEN RIG?
Our editor-at-large Larry Brown is 75 now…an increasingly ancient mariner. He’s sailed various Potters since the early 1990s.
Reborn as a Camp-Cruiser
The Joy of it All
Choosing a Boat Design
Sitting hove-to in 30 knots of wind was not how I anticipated spending my opening day.
RECONSIDERING ROSIE'S RIG
It was a typical hot Mississippi day when I walked into the Ocean Springs Yacht Club to cool off. I had just spent two hours bent in half while working inside the cabin of my West Wight Potter 15. I was stiff and drenched in sweat but feeling proud of myself. I had just turned Rosie into a lateen-rigged catboat.
When we were kids, we had a cocker spaniel aboard during summer cruises. The dog apparently had a massive bladder, but we kids were happy to row her ashore when nature called. We thought boating with a pet was terrific…but did our folks have a voice in the matter?
Some fiberglass boats, like Boston Whaler skiffs and MacGregor power-sailers, are built with integral flotation foam between the inner and outer laminations. Roger MacGregor was willing to flood his water-ballasted boats just to prove that they would not sink—and you can still find his old sales videos if you want to see for yourself. (youtube.com/ watch?v=hemNdJmzQBo)
MAKING THE SWITCH
Following are some methods for adding a Lateen rig to a Potter 15. Most of the photos are of my boat, but some clever ideas from others are included as well.
FIVE QUESTIONS: Richard Woods
Sailing experience with Richard Woods
Core Sound Cruising
Hmmm. I’m in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, with a nifty camp-cruiser sailboat on a trailer. I have a daughter on a sailing lake in Michigan, and another daughter on Long Island Sound in Connecticut.
Tom Cruise: MAN ON A MISSION
THE ACTOR STOPPED AT NOTHING TO MAKE M:1 7 AND 8 AND TOP GUN: MAVERICK. NOW HE'S FEELING THE PRESSURE.
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A decade after Katie Holmes broke his heart and wounded his pride with a surprise divorce filing, Tom Cruise remains single
TURNCOAT TOM'S HOLDING PENALTY!
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Think you are not the cruising type? Richard Branson will change your mind.
PHIL'S EX GETS TASTE OF OWN MEDICINE!
Orianne dragged through mud in male escort hubby’s divorce papers
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EV Meets ORV
With the new Solterra, Subaru brings some off-road cred to the mainstream-EV segment.
LAST SHOT AT LOVE?
2022 SUBARU WRX LIMITED
THE DREAM SEQUENCE
When it all gets to be too much, is it forgivable to indulge in a little fantasy? Absolutely. Especially when it involves a dashing young couple, a suitcase full of family jewels, and their own daring getaway.
How to Do Law Roach Like Law Roach Does Law Roach
It's safe to say the Legendary judge and very A-list stylist (see: every Zendaya red carpet appearance) has truly impeccable vibes. Here's how to snag a little of that magic for yourself.