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Wiring shackles with seizing wire

      I have always read just like everyone else that shackle pins need to be wired so they wont work loose.
      Well when I anchored my day sailor for the summer, I threw together a folding anchor, six feet of chain, some twenty feet of old trucker floating line, an old fender for a float and set the whole thing in about eight feet of water.  But first I hooked the chain and rode together with a galvanized shackle.  I tightened the shackle pin with a wrench.
       My only worry was too much rode and she might swing onto shore at low tide.   My little cove is subject to about two feet of tide, no rogue wakes, no current and very little wind.

       After about two weeks of coming and going by dinghy, and sailing on and off my poor mans mooring, I was pretty used to and confident my set up was there to stay.  Then one afternoon when I showed up I noticed my anchor line was changed.  Suspicious, I leaned over the side of the dinghy and yanked to the surface my anchor except it wasn't my folding anchor, it was some cast iron thing I have never seen.  I put it back, left my dinghy at the fender float and went sailing, all the time pondering what was going on.

      At dusk I came in and switched back to the dinghy, on my way out of the cove I swung by a young chap working on his boat and inquired if he knew anything about my missing anchor and rode.

     He said he noticed my boat was floating free one day and using a spare anchor he put it back where it belonged.  I thanked him profusely and brought him a bottle of rum the next day.

    The lesson I learned that day was to use seizing wire even for temporary things if  failure is unacceptable.  I also learned how smart my choice of the quiet cove was for my anchor buoy and that I still had some paying forward credits after all.

     FYI - A few days later from the dinghy, I probed the muddy bottom for two hours with my 12 foot boat hook and snagged my gear getting it all back including the shackle and loose pin. I replaced the borrowed anchor and this time I wired the pin, and that's my story.


Jones Island is the Absolute Best Marine Park in the San Juans - Period

This is a reposted post I think is very worthwhile.
      Jones Island is a wonderful place to take your family and enjoy boat camping.  The islands unique proximity to the three major marinas and harbors in the San Juan's is a big plus, but even without these great  nearby neighbors, Jones would still be your destination of choice.
       A favorite starting point for kayaking is Deer Harbor, only 2 1/2 miles over usually calm water.  Roche Harbor, a favorite resort and jump off point for those going to Canada is only 5 1/2 miles.  Of course the San Juan's largest city and port is Friday Harbor, at only 5 3/4 miles distant.

This post is all about Jones Island Marine Park in the San Juan's

         All of Jones is a state park, the north cove is preferred by power boaters and sailors alike, inside you will find a protected bay with docks and anchor buoys, plus room to anchor if the five buoys are in use.

Map locating Jones Island - post describes camping facilities

        The south cove is favored by kayaker's, there are several campgrounds and the island has running water, fire pits and picnic tables. On a sunny summer weekend it would not be unusual to find several large groups camping with many first time kayakers in guided tour groups.  Offshore are a few anchor buoys.  The south cove is not protected from San Juan Channel traffic or winter storms so the beaches are piled with sun silvered driftwood.

Jones Island in the San Juans - blog post describes campground

        The North Cove is absolutely wonderful, There is a brand new dock, anchor buoys, a steep gravel beach (good for dinghy's), and room to anchor. The cove is protected from all but the worst north winds (very infrequent) On shore are lots of tent sites, each with picnic table and fire rings.  There is a nice mowed lawn area for games and grazing deer.  Bathrooms and running water are clean, cool, clear and convenient. 

Jones Island in the San Juans - blog post describes campground

            The island has several hiking trails, rated, easy and moderate. From the trails are magnificent views of the surrounding islands, and waters.  Bring your camera to Jones, you will want to preserve the memories to show your friends that aren't as fortunate as you.

Boat camping at Jones Island Marine Park in the San Juan Islands