Tag Archives: Robinhood

Sheepscot Surprises!

Robinhood to Oven Mouth Cove

Wednesday (8/25) – Oven Mouth Cove, Maine

Before heading out today, Denise was went for a short walk around the marina property and Riggs Cove, including near the original Riggs home built in 1785.  She ventured to the cemetery where Riggs family members were buried, some dating back to the early 1800’s.  It was not easy to get to as it is located behind the marine center and where there is equipment blocking the entrance, but it was worth the adventure to see more of the history of this area.

We were not anxious to get under way as it was forecasted to be another hot day and leaving the dock meant no air conditioner unless we ran the generator all day.  However, we had stayed at Robinhood long enough, and we figured it would be breezy once we got on the Sheepscot River.  Also, since we were going to an area where people frequently swim around the anchorage, and we may be tempted to do so as well. Finally, around 9:30 we left Robinhood marina and made our way around the ledges and into the channel on the Sheepscot River.

We cruised north up the Sheepscot River dodging lobster pots everywhere, including in the middle of the channel.  We were surprised by how many there were, even 8 miles upriver from the Gulf of Maine.  But the scenery was lovely and the numerous houses on both sides of this wide river was beautiful. This is a much more populated area of Maine, as it is not far from Boothbay Harbor.

We turned up the Cross River, also lined with beautiful homes and wonderful scenery, and eventually turned into the channel to Oven Mouth. Here it became very narrow and we had to stay in the middle of the channel to avoid the shallow (and rocky) shoreline at low tide. 

Once through the narrow channel we entered Oven Mouth Cove.  We discovered this much-touted place was more like a lake then a cove, and could clearly handle 50 boats at anchor; it was very wide open and there was a lot of room.  We sought out the shallowest spot (13’) as identified on our charts, and recommended by the many Active Captain reviews.  After driving around for 20 minutes and unable to locate it even at low tide, we settled on a spot in the 19’ range, dodging the numerous lobster traps in the area.  Fortunately, we have sufficient anchor chain and rode to handle the depth when it is high tide (10’ more) and still feel comfortable that we will not move even if the wind started to blow hard.  Unfortunately, it did not.  But the best part was we instantly spotted the cell tower and had terrific cell coverage.

Cell tower and great coverage

It was a very hot day, and despite it being a large cove, the air was blocked by the hills around it.  We were able to stay in the shade and spent the day doing a little work, publishing a blog update, reading, watching the lobster boats check their traps, and observe a few recreational boaters come in for a swim, then leave.  In essence we had the entire place to ourselves.  At one point Denise stuck her feet in the water, and although tempted to go for a swim, it was still way too cold for her.

In mid-afternoon it got really hot, with no breeze.  We considered leaving this beautiful cove to move closer to the ocean where we might get the prevailing southern wind to cool us off.  But, we decided to stick it out. Finally, in late afternoon when we were dying of the heat (89°), we put on the generator and cranked up the air conditioners.  We ended up running them for 3 hours, allowing us to eat dinner in a bug-free and cooler setting.

Shortly after dinner we received a very unexpected and welcomed visit from Troy (“Band Aids”) who is the AGLCA Harbor Host for mid-coast Maine.  We had been in email communication with him and he had been tracking us on NEBO the whole time we have been in Maine.  When he saw we had finally made it to Oven Mouth Cove, he came out on a small boat to visit us; his house is located not far from where Cross River splits off of the Sheepscot.  It was a delight to have a visitor and we enjoyed talking to him for a while. He informed us that the dock we could see at the south end of the cove was where John Monroe (famed telecom billionaire) has a house, and his large yacht is usually parked there.  This explains the cell tower and terrific signal strength in this area.

Billionaire John Monroe’s dock

Troy left as the sun started to dip behind the trees and it wasn’t long thereafter that it got dark.  We saw millions of stars in the sky in this area of little light pollution, and it cooled down enough for us to get a good night’s sleep without having to run the generator again.

Thursday (8/26) – Five Islands – Georgetown, Maine

Oven Mouth Cove to Five Islands

As the sun came up, we were treated to a spectacular sunrise and a few seals swimming in the harbor.  A few lobster boats came in early to pick up their traps, but we were the only boat that spent the night in the anchorage.  Denise went out in the cockpit to take a few photos and was shocked.  During the night we had been inundated with millions of bugs, and they were all over the boat. It was disgusting!

Sunrise at Oven Mouth Cove
Bugs everywhere!
IO at Oven Mouth in the morning

It wasn’t long after Mark got up and finished breakfast, that he suggest we head out to our next adventure: our destination was 8.5 miles back down the Sheepscot River and to Five Islands Harbor near Malden Island. Around 9:00 am we pulled up the anchor and made our way back through the narrow entrance and into the Cross River.  We then turned left and headed south down the Sheepscot River, reversing our trek from the day before.  We cruised just past the area where we would have turned into Robinhood, but continued a little bit further south, passing MacMahan Island to our right and entering into the channel for Five Islands Harbor.

Approaching Five Islands Harbor

We made our way around the many moored lobster boats and pleasure crafts in search of one of the free moorings offered by the Five Islands Yacht Club (FIYC).  As we were struggling to figure out where these were located, we pulled close to the dock on Malden Island and asked a guy on a sailboat at the dock there for directions. He gave us the information we sought, and we were able to secure a mooring in a great spot.  However, we did notice that there were several boats (including a large sailboat) that were much too large for the mooring field and one of these boats was incredibly close to us when the wind shifted us all around. One of the Active Captain reviews had warned of this and we now understood what they meant.

Too large a boat for the mooring
IO at 5 Islands looking north

We spent the rest of the morning finishing up on some work items, and then we ate lunch.  We also noticed the sailboat from the dock on Malden Island was now on a private mooring ball next to ours. We later met “Doug” (“Kalitan V”), the guy who helped us out, but will discuss him later.

In the afternoon we published the last blog update, and then decided to go ashore and give our legs a little time on land.  Mark took the dinghy out for a quick spin around the harbor and to identify the dinghy dock, then came back to get Denise. 

Mark checking out the neighborhood
IO at Five Islands

From there we went to the mainland, which is part of the village of Georgetown.  This area is on the same peninsula as Robinhood and is bordered by the Sheepscot River to the east, and the Kennebec River to the west.  The village is a misnomer as there is no real main street, but there are a few spots of interest besides the Five Islands Harbor area. One such spot was the Five Islands Farm, located about a half a mile from the wharf on “5 Islands Rd”.  We walked up the hill along the road, which had no shoulder, but because it is all residential there was little traffic and most of the passing cars went slow.  We arrived at the Five Islands Farm where we purchased a tomato and some tart apples, but did not buy one of their freshly made blueberry pies (it was tempting).

Five Islands Farm

We headed back down the hill towards the wharf encountering a few interesting sights along the way:

Flag on house in Georgetown
We found our thrill!!!

Once back in the harbor area, we went to the Five Islands Harborside General Store, a small souvenir shop that overlooks the water and is also a fuel stop.  It has a few convenient food items, but mainly here is where people come to buy their wine and beer and take it back to the Lobster Company (lobster pound) as they do not sell any alcohol there.

Harborside General Store

We left the General Store, figuring it was getting late and we should get in line at the Lobster Company before the line got too long.  When we arrived we discovered there was already a line and we were going to have to wait a bit just to place an order.  This is an interesting lobster pound because the rolls and sandwiches are ordered in the first (main) building on the wharf, but the lobster dinners, steamers, muscles, and oysters are ordered in another building behind it.  Mark wanted a lobster roll and Denise wanted steamed lobster so we had to split up and each get our own meal. We then grabbed one of the few available spots on the picnic tables overlooking the harbor to enjoy our early dinner.  It was a beautiful day, even though it was hot, but the breeze off the ocean made it very comfortable.  We were glad we came early as the lines that formed after us had people waiting at least 15 minutes just to order, and another 20 -30 minutes to get their meal. It is definitely touristy and more expensive than several of the other lobster pounds we have been to, but it was just as delicious. We did pass on the ice cream which is located in a 3rd separate building on the wharf.

Five Islands signage
Five Islands Lobster Co.
Ice Cream stand and picnic area
Malden Island from mainland

After dinner, we took our dinghy back to the boat and talked with family on the phone. We also noticed Doug was on his boat, and had a talk with him across the water between our boats.  Here we learned he is a 5th generation landowner on Malden Island, the exclusive island located just south of the moorings.  He gave us a lot of information about the area, and told us a lot about the 9 homes and their owners on Malden Island. There is a dining hall that is on the premises and has a full time chef and staff (or did until Covid hit) and the islanders can eat all 3 meals there. There is an expected minimum number of meals they must eat (like a country club minimum) and most of the islanders are from the original founding families like himself; although that is changing. It was fascinating to hear his stories, and to learn that he lives all but a few months of the year on the island; he spends the winter months on the mainland because his island home is poorly insulated and has no heat. We ended the evening watching a nice sunset over the harbor, but were so busy talking to Doug that we forgot to capture it in a picture. 

Doug (“Kalitan V”)

Tomorrow we leave for the weekend in Boothbay Harbor, but we are very glad we came here. It is a beautiful spot and comfortable, even with the crowded moorings and we were pleasantly surprised at how much we liked it here.  We will come back here again!

Out-running Henri!

Friday (8/20) – Derecktor Robinhood marina, Georgetown, Maine

We had left Port Clyde early to outrun the remnants of Tropical Storm Fred that were forecasted to provide deteriorating sea conditions as the day wore on.  Although not a threat to us because it was so far offshore, the waves it produced will eventually make their way north and impact our comfort level. As much as we hated to leave the Penobscot Bay area, we needed to press on west in order to hit the few remaining places we hope to visit before heading south towards home.

When we headed out of Port Clyde, we immediately hit fog, once again (and for the last time) crossing the Muscongus Bay.  However, the fog lifted soon after entering the Bay, and we were able to turn off the radar due to increased visibility.

Running in fog with chart plotter & radar

We rounded Pemaquid Point and the Ram Island Lighthouse, only this time instead of passing south of Squirrel Island, we turned into the channel towards Boothbay Harbor.

We cruised north of Squirrel Island heading west, passing the Burnt Island Lighthouse (not to be confused with the Burnt Harbor Light in MDI area) and turned up the channel that is known as the Townsend Gut.  This is a back way to run up towards the Sheepscot River, and other waters. We arrived in perfect timing to hit the half-hour opening of the Southport Island Bridge, a swing bridge that has restricted openings in the summer.

Just before the bridge is a cove with a popular restaurant on the water (Robinson’s Wharf & Tugs Pub) we have read about, but never visited.  It was too early to stop for lunch, so we pressed on through the bridge and continued through the Gut, dodging the ledges (aka rocks) that lie just outside the channel.

We eventually came to the Sheepscot River where we crossed it and made our way around the top of MacMahan Island into Riggs Cove; location of Derecktor Robinhood Marina and our home for the next few days.  We pulled into the fuel dock for a fill-up and then moved over to our assigned slip.  . 

Once the boat was settled, we went to check in at the dockmaster’s office.  We were pleasantly surprised to learn that in addition to a BoatUS discount on the fuel, they also offered a discount on our dockage. We reserved the loaner car so we could use it on Saturday afternoon to go to Bath (15 minutes away) for church, and then to dinner.  We then went for a quick walk around the marina complex and then back to the boat to do some work and further planning.

Our main reason for coming to Robinhood was the protection it offered. We had been tracking hurricane “Henri” and its forecast track had it turning right and skirting the New England coast.  We wanted as much protection as possible from the swells that would come up the rivers, and the marina was also preparing accordingly.  We were advised that we may be asked to move to a mooring, or to turn our boat around in the slip (bow forward), but they would make that call on Saturday. Meanwhile, the protection it offered, also provided a stillness on this hot day, and we found the humidity brought out the bugs and especially the mosquitoes.  We were forced to run the AC once again.

In the evening, we hoped to have dinner at the “Osprey”, the restaurant on-site that had been recently taken over.  It had received rave reviews and we had remembered the old one from 2017 as being mediocre, so we walked over in the afternoon to put in a reservation for a table. Unfortunately, they had none available, but we could take our chances at the bar, or at their 3 small patio tables outside on a FCFS basis. We chose instead to order pizza from their wood-fire stove they had installed in the spring.  As they limit their take-out orders during the rush hour, we opted for a 5:30 pm pickup and Captain Mark agreed to walk up the path to the restaurant to get it at the appropriate time.  It was pretty good food and we enjoyed it, but we are still missing Antonella’s back home in Winter Park.

Wood-fired Oven at Osprey

That evening, the marina was hosting a local folk-singing artist for a small outdoor concert near the gazebo in the middle of the grounds.  We were reluctant to attend in part because it was not our type of music, but also because it would require sitting outside with all the bugs.  However, we could easily hear the music from our boat, but it was not so loud it kept us from a good night’s sleep.

Robinhood marina – Gazebo area for music performer

Saturday (8/21) – Derecktor Robinhood marina, Georgetown, Maine

It being a Saturday, it was a day for Denise to get in a run, even with the hills and a shoulder-less road. By leaving early she was pretty sure she would not encounter much traffic (she didn’t) and she had mapped out a path that kept her off the main highway. Outside of the marina property, the entire area is full of private residences, most of which are summer “cottages” and some are rental property. At the corner of one of the roads, there was the Robinhood Free Meeting House where they have community concerts and Tuesday through Friday they offer a breakfast. The entire route was very really pretty, but the heat and humidity had her feeling like she was back in FL on this August day.  She did see a few other runners, and one other walker out along the course, so that gave her encouragement to keep on with the run.

Robinhood Free Meeting House
Temperatures at run time – Like FL in the morning!

The rest of the morning and early afternoon we spent working on boat chores, cataloging pictures, and then starting on a blog post.  In the late afternoon, we got the marina loaner car and drove over the Kennebec River, and into the town of Bath.  We went to attend the 4:00 pm mass at St. Mary’s Catholic Church, and to grab some dinner in this very cute town.

After church, we went to Beale Street Barbeque, located on Waters Street in downtown Bath.  Denise suggested to Mark that they probably got the name from Beale Street in Memphis, as it is a famous street there, and known for its barbeque places.  This particular joint was celebrating 20 years, and they served up a good amount of barbeque ribs (Denise) and brisket (Mark) enabling us to take some home for another meal.

Since we had the car, we took advantage of and went to a local “Shaws” grocery store.  It is not our favorite New England grocery chain, but it sufficed for a handful of the basics we required.  Afterwards, we drove back to the boat and settled in for the rest of the evening.

Meanwhile, all day we had been watching the forecasts for the remnants of Henri, now headed north through Connecticut and New York.  If we were going to get anything, it would be rain on Sunday. Therefore, the marina did not request us to move to a mooring or change our boat around. But in the morning, they had moved a large “California” yacht from an end-dock to just behind us, near the haul-out wharf and across the dock. At high tide, this acted as a barrier between us and the dockmaster’s office where the WI-FI antennae was, and we were unable to get a signal.  Since cell coverage was almost non-existent here, this was a real pain because we could not even carry on a phone conversation with family and friends, all of whom were concerned for our well-being.  It also meant that we could not stream any shows in the evenings, so we reverted to reading our books for a nice change.

Sunday (8/22) – Derecktor Robinhood marina, Georgetown, Maine

It was a foggy and overcast day, but the weather was not nearly as bad as was forecasted earlier in the week.  We knew there would still be rain and wind later in the day, but it was now diminishing in its intensity, which was now expected in the afternoon.

Over the last few days we had conversations with a couple on a Caliber 38’ sailboat (like our old one) who were a few slips away from our boat. They had told us that the laundry at the marina was not in great shape and they found another one near Brunswick, just west of Bath. So, shortly after breakfast when we learned no one had requested the loaner car, we used it to go to their suggested laundromat and get done a few loads of laundry.  It just so happened that it was near the Walmart and near a NAPA auto store, so we could also get a few other errands done at the same time.  Mark dropped Denise to do the laundry while he went to Walmart, then on the way back to the marina we stopped at NAPA to return an item; one less thing to carry on the boat.

In the afternoon the rain and winds finally came, and we took advantage to work on the blog, read, and to cook a delicious dinner on the boat.  It was much less intense than originally forecasted, and for that we were grateful.

Effects of “Henri”

However, at 3:00 am, we were awaken to an electrical issue (surge from the dock power?) with alarms going off and our electrical panel flashing; it was crazy. We were able to turn off all systems and circuits and investigate, but found no breakers thrown, even on the dock power pedestal.  Mark reset everything anyway and we did not find any issues. When he turned everything back on it was all ok, so we went back to sleep, mostly.

Monday (8/23) – Derecktor Robinhood marina, Georgetown, Maine

Today was a most uneventful day.  It was rainy off and on, but no wind to speak of and once again hot.  We spent the day working inside, conducting business, working to publish a blog update, and began work on the next one.

In the morning, the marina moved the big California yacht out from the wharf and haul-out area, enabling us to get a good Wi-Fi signal. This was great as we were able to receive and send phone calls, which we spent a large part of the day doing, both with clients, family and friends.

At one point we took a break and went for a walk around the marina complex, just to stretch our legs.  There is much history with this marina, which originally started as a trading post, then a shipping port and was originally known as “Riggsville” after one of the founding landowners. Within the complex they have several of the original buildings including: the General Store, which now serves as a marina business; the Library; and The Gallery, originally the Post Office and now a museum of the history of the area. However, it is very much a working boat yard and marina, with constant activity and a “home base” for many seasonal boaters. You can learn about this fascinating place and its role in history here. Here are some pictures of the area:

We also had been admiring the “Mary E”, a schooner that was in the marina, but we saw no one take out for charter or work on all weekend.  We learned from a local that this was a charter boat that had capsized in late July in the Kennebec River with 15 passengers and 3 crew on board.  We had remembered hearing about the story and wondered if a cause had yet been determined.  Apparently there is no official information out there, but you can read about the story here.

The “Mary E”

That evening we had a low-key dinner on board, and we streamed a movie for a while, until Denise started falling asleep.  We both went to bed early hoping for a better night’s sleep and no surprises.

Tuesday (8/24) – Derecktor Robinhood marina, Georgetown, Maine

Denise started the day with another run in this very hilly area, but a shorter one than on Saturday. She took pretty much the same route and saw the same houses.  The rain had stopped and the sun was now out, but it was a very hot 82 degrees, especially for Maine.

We were supposed to leave today and our plans called for two night anchoring in Oven Mouth Cove, a night at 5-Islands on a free mooring (if we could get it), and then to Boothbay Harbor for the weekend.  All of these destinations are no more than 5 miles from where we currently are and we had some flexibility in the schedule.  We made the decision to stay another day, taking advantage of shore power to run the air conditioners, and to get some projects done. Once the marina gave us the ok to stay, we settled into getting some of them done.

Denise managed to publish another blog update, and Mark tackled the tedious task of replacing our port navigation light.  This required emptying everything from the anchor locker, which he put on the deck of the boat, and then crawling into that small space to get to the light. It is a real pain, but he did it and now we have a working port-side running light again.  We also had some client work to do, and we laid out an itinerary for the following week of adventure.

Mark inside anchor locker – he’s really in there
Port light replacement project

In celebration of our hard work for the day, Mark used the marina grill and cooked us some delicious steaks for dinner. We were happy we got so much accomplished and that we had decided to stay another day. Tomorrow we would leave and head out for another adventure to a few new locations we have yet to explore.