Lake Union for the the 4th of July

We decided to try something new this year for the Fourth of July. We decided to watch the fireworks on Lake Union. We usually avoid crowds and especially crowds of boats. But for some unknown reason, we threw caution to the wind this year. The challenge for us is that we can’t see the north half of the lake from our slip so we had to venture out into the fray and anchor in the melee of boats. This year we were feeling brave.

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The fireworks are fantastic, but the “pre show” on the lake is equally entertaining.

We motored out of our slip about 10:00am on Friday and travelled all of 100 yards before dropping our anchor. We were in just over 40′ of water so we put out 130′ feet of chain, gave it a bit of a pull, and set about the serious business of relaxing. The scope is short, but the weather was nice and we new the lake would get real crowded. We have confidence in our anchor with pretty short scope.

We kayaked, ate lunch, lounged around, and generally hung out all day. It was nice. As the afternoon wore on, the lake got much more interesting.

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The lake is starting to get crowded.

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We saw a variety of interesting “boats”. This Amphicar looked real nice.

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The band motored by. I don’t know who they were or where they were going.

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This boat looks a bit “looney”.

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I think all the police boats were out. They appeared to stay busy all day.

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It is apparent to me that most people don’t really use their anchors very much. Lake Union is just over 40 feet deep. Many of the boats I saw just dropped their anchor and some line and called it good. They could not have had any idea whether their anchor would hold them or not.

A 24′ speedboat drops anchor ten feet from our stern. I wander aft as he is paying out line. The conversation goes something like this.

“So … how deep do you think it is here?

“I don’t know”

“How much line do you have out?”

“I don’t know.”

“You think that’s going to work?”

“I don’t know.”

Five minutes later he has dragged 50 feet away

The wind came up in the evening and boats were dragging all over the lake. Lots of fending off and shouting. We had 130 feet of chain out. Fortunately, we were a bit off to the side and missed intimate involvement in most of it.

We enjoyed the fireworks from our reclining chairs on the flybridge along with a glass of wine.

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After the fireworks, we just hung out for about forty-five minutes. Boat traffic had thinned out by then and we motored the 100 yards back to our slip without incident.

The morning after revealed a fair number of boats that stayed overnight.

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Saturday, we wandered down to the 38th Lake Union Wooden Boat Festival. There were many very nice old boats there. Our marina neighbor, Jerry, was there with his immaculate 1973 Grand Banks 36, Virginia Cary.

mv Archimedes CWB 38 Wooden Boat Festival 1 mv Archimedes CWB 38 Wooden Boat Festival 2 mv Archimedes CWB 38 Wooden Boat Festival 3And that was the end of our weekend. Sunday, it was gorgeous and 86 degrees when we left the lake. As always, there is not enough time for relaxation.