Summer in Maine. It's almost mythical how good it can be. For those "from away", the discovery of a Maine summer can be life altering. If you hit it right, a vacation in Maine can trigger the thing you dream about and yearn to get back to throughout the busy year. The state slogan, "The Way Life Should Be", rings true for so many who return here annually for that week of escape. And for those who call Maine home, we know better than anyone how good those warm days and cool nights are. We dream about those days while we curse and shovel out our mailboxes or snow blow our driveways. Whether you are a native Mainer or an annual visitor, there is often that one quintessential day your mind wonders off to on those tough February days. This is a highlight of just one of those days we've had this year.
When my friend Dave and his wife Daisy caught wind of our vision for Maine Coast Cruising, they quickly jumped on the idea of a half day excursion. Dave and Daisy try and make it out to South Beach on Long Island, Casco Bay each summer and requested that this year they experience it by boat. They brought their baby, some friends and asked if Kayleigh and I could bring our boy Waylon along. We gladly obliged and met at the dock late morning, loaded up the boat with provisions and cast off for a summer day on the Maine coast.
The cruise out of Portland Harbor is like crossing a gate into another world. The harbor itself feels industrial with planes overhead, cargo ships, commercial fishing vessels and the Casco Bay Ferry Lines coming and going at regular frequency. The industrial feel quickly transforms as you make your way out of the Fore River and escape into the less frequented waters of Casco Bay. The gang quickly felt at home on the boat and settled into the cruise out to Long Island. There were a myriad of sites to see as we weaved between islands. Fort Gorges, constructed just prior to the civil war to protect Portland Harbor, is an unmistakable landmark all boats pass by as they travel to and from the harbor. Osprey and seals are common to see on boat trips in Casco Bay and we saw our fair share. After cruising for an hour or so and circling along the back side of Long Island, we arrived at South Beach.
Once in the protected cove, we were the only boat, and only people around. We dropped anchor, inflated some toys and had that moment we will all dream about as we shovel out our mailboxes this winter. Some of us swam to shore, Waylon hitched a ride with Daisy over to the beach where he could let his pent up 7-year old energy run free. Kayleigh took to holding Winni, Dave and Daisy's baby daughter, and the rest of us sun bathed and enjoyed an anchorage in a Maine island escape. We had oysters, sandwiches from a local deli, and a few libations that I resisted as I was in charge of the safety and navigation of the vessel. It was a day you dream about. I can't deny that Kayleigh and I took a little pride in seeing our vision for what we could create for people come to life. It is a day the group of us will never forget.
We are lucky here in Maine to have such incredible options of charter boats, boat tours and sunset sails throughout our coast, but we like to think we have started something pretty unique. The Islander is a boat that will feel like your own with a captain and crew that have a passion to help others experience the lesser seen parts of the coast we love. Join us and find out for yourself.