July 2, 2022

Essex’s Pettipaug Yacht Club Hauls the Boats Up

Rolling out the surfboards to higher ground

It was billed as an “Emergency Work Party” to prepare the clubhouse and grounds of the Pettipaug Yacht Club in Essex for the threatening winds of Hurricane Irene. As many as 40 club members showed up to help.

For some, it was simply the task of rolling away stacks of surfboards and dinghies away from the shore, upland as far as possible. Larger vessels, which could be swept away, if they stayed the water, had to be hauled up on to the land.

The biggest boat pulled was a 22-foot O’Day sailboat by the name of “Copacetic.” Owned by Cory Manero, who has now gone off to college, the chore of hauling the sailboat was left to Cory’s father, the club’s Vice Commodore, Chris Manero. It took two tries to get “Copacetic” floating properly on her trailer, up out of the water and on the shore.

Another hauling adventure involved pulling out of the water the sailing sloop “Admiral,” which required the total water immersion its owner, Chris Johnson, a club member from Chester.

Then, in the midst of it all the rain came, hard for awhile. But everyone kept working. There are over 150 boats on the grounds of the Pettipaug Yacht Club by a recent count, and grounds of the club are definitely low lying.

The way the boats have been lashed down to minimize even hurricane winds could well mean that there will be little damage to the boats on land at the club. However, if there is a surge of high water, particularly on top of a high tide, it could well be a different story. Let’s hope not!

Sailing yacht “Copacetic” waits to come shore

“Copacetic” out of the water at last

Then the rains came

“Admiral” owner Chris Johnson takes a dip

Hauling away

Putting away

Watching from the shore

Tying up

Tying up docks

Boats away

O’Day away

Clubhouse porch

All photos by Jerome Wilson