I’ve spent more time watching the weather, waiting for the river to go down, or chipping ice off the boat than I have on the boat itself. Mold started growing on the leathers. I’ve had to bail out snow melt versus splashes from sailing. This winter has been the longest spell in ten years that I’ve spent without going sailing. And it hurts.

But the days of winter are almost behind us and spring, it’s theoretically just around the corner. Or at least the equinox is. That means its time to start heading north again. This is going to be a Salt Water Year. More time will be spent in the South Salish Sea (unless the Canadians are uncharacteristically foolish and open the border) than normal. Anything to get out where the magic happens. And to start the year, a trip to Hope Island State Park is a requirement. Click here for an article I wrote about my favorite Washington State Park in my column at 48 North Sailing Magazine.