Guelph Power and Sail Squadron
The Blinkin’ Buoy Newsletter
Fall classes are well underway
with the following enrollments:
Advanced Piloting - 5
Boat Pro -10
Welcome to all new students
and thank you to the instructors
Navigating with GPS
Fundamentals of Weather
(start dates to be confirmed,
watch the website)
INSIDE THIS ISSUE:
Dirt Money to the rescue!
Dates to remember
Rendezvous 2008 as reported by Wendy Hodgson of “Altona”
Approximately 35 boating fanatics gathered for the Guelph CPS Rendezvous 2008 at Fifty Point
Marina and Conservation area on September 5, 6 and 7. Nine hardy souls braved Friday's falling barometer to meet at The Landing Restaurant for the second annual fish fry dinner to start things off. (I've heard
rumours that the participants helped to warm themselves with a spot of grog, me hearties!) The real festivities began at Ingledale House on Saturday morning with the intrepid Captains of the Barbecues John
Hunter, Mike Seitz, Ernie Whalley and Ralph Stolberg braving the elements to serve a fantastic breakfast
of scrambled eggs, pancakes, sausage and hash browns. (I wonder how they kept that pancake mix from
dripping through the grills?) Cathy Aldersley kept things organized inside with juice and hot coffee, while
25 of us huddled in the shelter of Ingledale House watching the rain and debating the pull of the open water versus the warmth and ease of a tour of Puddicombe winery. Fortified by a hot breakfast and gradually
clearing skies, Past Commodore Ernie with first mate Cathy, and Captain Ralph with first mate Wendy,
determined that their sailing vessels Air Force and Altona would set to sea with all aboard who wished to
come. (Well, maybe not all, but then knowing boaters as we do, we figured some would choose the comforts aboard the SS Puddicombe Winery). The eight sailors signed on for Altona, and 6 for Air Force,
packed their bag lunches (great idea, Cathy!) amidst jokes about Maple Leaf meat (we would like to assure you that no boaters were poisoned in the making of this Rendezvous lunch) and set sail.
Air Force was first to leave the safety of the harbour, gallantly plowing into the dangerous ripples of Lake
Ontario. She was followed closely by Altona, navigating swiftly through the treacherous harbour
(Helmswoman Wendy was too busy talking for Captain Ralph's liking) and finally plunging bravely into
open waters. Crews wrestled sails aloft through the raging light breezes, and we set our course at a bracing 6 knot speed, at least until we turned the engine off. The sun came out (more or less) and we drifted
peacefully (more or less) in front of Fifty Point. Suddenly, the peace of the day was shattered as a mighty
roar rent the skies. Was it an oncoming squall line?? Had unseen clouds of vertical development produced a dangerous thunderstorm with downbursts, microbursts, waterspouts, hail, gusts and wind sheer
which would rip our sails to tatters?? The crews scrambled to emergency stations, anxiously scanning the
skies, when what to their wond'ring eyes should appear.... no, not a sleigh and 8 tiny reindeer... but Dirt
Money! Don Lockhart had roared to the rescue to pick up the last passengers left ashore and longing for
the adventure of the open seas. His 34 foot Baja circled (and circled, and circled) the hapless Altona,
Continued on Page 4
The Rescue of the Stranded Boat on Lake Ontario
It was September 6th, the only sunny day out of the rainy weekend that had been booked for the Rendezvous at Fifty
Point Marina, Stoney Creek. There hadn’t been enough boats originally for everyone to go out on the lake, so the four of
us Smeltzers, Don, Pat, Jennifer and Kaitlyn, were going to go on a winery tour, till Don Lockhart arrived with his Baja
powerboat (34 ft); Dirt Money. He offered to take us out on his boat for the day. We all too happily agreed.
It seemed like a pretty average trip, the clouds moved away and the sun came out for us. We traveled from the Marina to
Bronte Harbour, nearly the other side of the lake. We came round, passed the others in their sailboats, waved at them
and continued on. We’d passed the test range that the military uses off of Fifty Point when we heard a distress call over
the radio from a boat that had become stranded and was unable to go anywhere.
Whipping around we took off using the only the directions, ‘between Fifty Point Marina and Hamilton Harbour, and about
2-3 miles out from the large apartment buildings’. Although we did hear the Coast Guard say they would be there to aid
the boat, they would take about 25 minutes, we continued on our course anyway to help find them. After all, CPS members remember their pledge to help when they can.
When we got to the spot the only boat we saw at first was a sailboat. The small 16 ft boat that was in distress had been
a Four Winns powerboat (which I’ll call Four Winns, because that’s what it was referred to over the radios). We radioed
the boat to ask for further directions. They were able to see us and provided directions, upon finding them, the family and
boat was hitched up to a tow line. The boat’s passengers consisted of a father, mother and child. They contacted the
Coast Guard to notify them ‘Four Winns’ had gotten help. The Coast Guard said they’d come escort us all back anyway.
Unfortunately, it took a while to FIND the coast guard. Whether the small, unnamed craft had drifted from where they
were when they’d sent out the call, or the Coast Guard was way off, I’m not sure, but we did beat them to the boat and
had to wait a while, while we looked for it. Eventually, we did find the Coast guard, and they found us.
The disabled boat had just been bought and the new owner was taking it out for the first time. He said he’d heard a bang
sound and then nothing, no power. Because it had just been bought, the boat didn’t have a name, which is why it was
referred to as Four Winns. He assumed that the drive had gone, as the motor continued running, but it wouldn’t go anywhere. So, moving at less than 30 miles per hour (the speedometer doesn’t register below that), a small boat in tow behind us, and the Coast Guard to our Starboard we made our way back to the Fifty Point Marina Docks in about, 25-30
Coincidentally, like us, they also had launched from the docks there as well (which made things easier for us). We got
them safely to the docks and they got to the launch ramp, the Coast Guard took over from there. We last saw them with
their boat loaded up on the trailer as they prepared to leave the marina.
We never did discover the family’s name or that of their boat.
We all enjoyed our afternoon out on the lake and wish to thank Don Lockhart again for bringing his boat for the day and
taking us out. Thank You.
By Jennifer Smeltzer/ Patricia Smeltzer S (CPS Life member)
Pictures by Jennifer Smeltzer
Boating Buy, Sell, and Trade.
Squadron members may list any boating related items that you want to buy, sell, or trade. Advertise for
free in the Blinkin’ Buoy. Call us at 519-740-8509
For Sale: 1989 Four Winns Liberator, 460 CID 330 hp King Cobra I/O, “silent choice” through hull exhaust, Full top plus bimini, Porta-potti with pump out, Teak swim platform, Four Winns tandem axle trailer
NEW Price $9,500. Phone Dave White 519-837-0440 or email [email protected]
Christmas Dinner & Dance Saturday Dec 13
Now that your boats are pumped out, cleaned out and hauled out, we'll soon notice signs of the holiday season surrounding us.
To eliminate any stress this may cause, mark Saturday December 13 on your calendar for the
CPS Christmas Dinner & Dance. What better way to enjoy good food and see your fellow boating
friends! There are a limited amount of tickets available, so do not be disappointed. Call now for tickets
Italian Canadian Club at 135 Ferguson St. Guelph
Cocktails at 1830, Dinner at 1930
Tickets available from
Nick Wenzler 519-837-1517
Edith Majorossy - 519-824-111
Mike Seitz 519-837-0644
Don Lockart on board “Dirt Money” with the Smeltzer family at Rendezvous 2008
Rendezvous...continued from Page 1.
while the fiendish powerboaters aboard laughed uproariously at the sailors clinging to the shrouds and bouncing helplessly in Dirt Money's mighty wake. At last, in a blaze of orange and red, she raced across the bounding main to taunt Air Force, before disappearing in the blink of an eye towards Grimsby, probably to gas up.
The drama of the day had just begun however, for not long after our brush with broaching in Dirt Money's
mighty wake, our VHF crackled to life with a genuine distress call: a small powerboat was helplessly adrift
up Hamilton way. The helpless passengers must have been terrified in those pounding seas, whipped to a
frenzy by winds topping at least 2 on the Beaufort Scale! (If you don't remember from the weather course,
look it up.)
Seeing no other craft in the proximity who could render assistance, Altona was just preparing to tack and
crank up the iron sail to put on some speed (all of 6 knots, which would be breathtaking compared to what the
wind was offering), when once again the peace of the day was shattered and a mighty roar rent the skies.
You guessed it....Dirty Money blurred past us, Hamilton bound and outdistancing even the Coast Guard. I
think she gassed up in Bronte before swinging round and towing the hapless craft back to 50 Point. CPS
members to the rescue! (Ed. Note—see accompanying article Dirt Money to the Rescue)
Meanwhile, back on the shore, the rest of the Rendezvouers (?)chugged aboard the Puddicombe train and
improved their knowledge of all things viney and winey. They too were in very good humour (nothing to do
with all that wine they tasted I'm sure!) when 34 people met back at Ingledale House. Commodore Nick outdid
himself with a huge vat of Commander's Punch, the BBQers did their masterful thing again,and the steak dinner with salads and desserts was simply outstanding. Many thanks to all participants who contributed to the
Not to be outdone by the excitement of the afternoon, there was......The Prize Table! (Limit 3 prizes per family.) Karen and John Keleher outdid themselves with amazing prizes, beautifully wrapped and with lots to go
around. We were stunned by the goodies, and most appreciative of all the work that must have gone into soliciting all those goodies. The evening finished with everyone happy, extremely well fed, and enjoying fellowship around a crackling bonfire. Oh, and by the way, who has my Tupperware Tumbler full of wine that I
stuck in someone's cooler at the BBQ? (The Commander's punch was so good I never got around to it. I hope
you drank the wine, but if you'd like to return my glass (which I'd dearly love to have), you can contact me at
[email protected] No reward offered: you already got my wine.)
What a great weekend it was, wrapping up with Sunday breakfast and leftover commanders punch. (Well,
there was orange juice in it, wasn't there?) I know that everyone who benefited from such an enjoyable weekend joins me in thanking the organizers and worker bees.... Commodore Nick Wenzler, Ernie, Cathy, John,
Mike, John and Kathy. Well done CPS.... can't wait to see you all again at the Christmas party!
With the cooler temperatures fast approaching, why not refresh your wardrobe with casual boating attire
from an online retailer; 'Embroider Me' located in St. Catharines, ON. What ever your selection, a CPS logo
and our Guelph Squadron Burgee will be placed on your chosen items for you to wear proudly. Order now for
your family and friends in time for Christmas!
Check our Guelph Power and Sail Squadron website, and click on 'What's New', and then on 'Casual
Clothing'. You will find men’s and ladies golf and polo shirts, dress shirts, wind vest, jackets, pants and hats,
sweatshirts and more. To place your order, follow the simple steps outlined and in no time, you will be enjoying your purchases!
Submissions for future Blinkin’ Buoy editions are welcomed any time. With over 200 members who get
on the water many times in the boating season, there are many stories to be told. Where did you cruise last
year? Have you researched and installed new equipment on your vessel recently? Charter a boat in the south
from time to time? Learned something we should know about? The whole squadron is waiting to read about it
in the Blinkin’ Buoy. Call us at 519-740-8509 for details.