Most of you have no doubt heard the expression “growing roots” to describe a person who has been in one place for an extended period of time. For boats in the fertile waters of Grenada, that expression is not far from reality.
In anticipation of moving our boat today, we spent an hour or more scrubbing the growth from our anchor rode and bridle yesterday afternoon. And by we, I mean Rebecca. There was everything from crusty barnacles and little worms living on the rope and chain, a veritable jungle of plants and animals. We definitely didn’t want all that sea life clogging up our electric windlass and then dying in our anchor locker!
Because it is so time consuming, this is a task that is best done the day before you plan to depart. And even though we failed to do so, I would also recommend tackling this in the early morning, both before the sun gets high in the sky and the trade winds start honking. Why? The sun part is pretty obvious… it gets hot! It’s best to do this job when the wind is calm though because it requires you to gradually draw in your rode, cleaning it a few feet at a time. As you reduce the amount of rode you have out, and thus alter your scope, you run the risk of breaking your anchor free if the wind is blowing too briskly.
What was I doing while Rebecca was in the dinghy scrubbing all the foul-smelling growth off the rode? Standing on the bow with the remote control of course, pushing the button whenever she needed the line shortened. I know, it’s a tough job but somebody had to do it.
Oh, and in case this wasn’t obvious, be sure to put the proper scope back out when you finish the job. Failing to do so might just result in your dragging across the bay, and that wouldn’t be cool!