By 9:10am the gondola passed under the Rip Van Winkle Bridge having traveled 4 miles in 40 minutes.
Nearing the 4 mile mark
Not everybody was in striped shirts today. Many of the guys opted for more comfortable or functional clothing. Everyone had fun joking with Bepi who tied a long strip of cloth around his head like an Indian. Geronimo, Indio and Comanche were among the nicknames thrown around.
At the 7 mile mark, the wind came up a bit. By 10:30am, the gondola had reached the 10 mile mark and the wind was getting stronger. I switched places with John at the 11 mile mark. No sooner had we begun rowing than the chase boat sputtered and died. The boats came together and we each took our turn trying to fix it in our own way. We dropped anchor in a shallow because the wind was pushing us back up-river. I began a series of phone calls which ended with Sea Tow on the phone. While I was giving them our location, I heard the engine come to life – Bepi had removed the spark plugs, cleaned them with a Swiss Army Knife and some sandpaper, plugged them in and brought the motor back to life. We were on our way again.
While rowing along the east shore, we passed two women who were asking about the gondola. I asked them where we were and they said “Tivoli” – about 17 miles into our 25 mile row. It was 12:20pm. The wind began sending us rollers and decent-sized chop. About a mile later the wind eased up a bit and the water calmed down to light chop.
Chris and I changed places and he remained on the gondola until they made land at the Hudson River Maritime Museum in Kingston at about 2:10pm.
The team after arriving in Kingston
Tomorrow (Wednesday) is a straight shot down a section of river that heads directly south. I’m told that when the wind is out of the south (as it has been so far) this section becomes a wind tunnel.
Wish us luck and pray for calm conditions.