Day 7: North to Mackinaw
Well it turns out that 4 hours sleep just isn't enough so our bodies compensated by keeping us under until ten the next morning. However we decided to avail ourselves of the coffee and muffins in the internet cafe but as it was so late we limited our online time considerably!
Then we untied and heading to the fueling dock for a pump out of the holding tank and then we set off on our northward journey towards Mackinaw and Lake Huron.
Taking advantage of the strong wind coming from more or less straight behind us we sailed a fast pace towards Beaver Island with the self steering once again in charge of our course. Leaving the rest of the crew to relax and plan our course.
We did realise the truth in the old adage about not noticing the strength of the wind from astern because when we noticed that the wind was picking up we headed up into wind, well we bounced all over the place! So under two reefs instead of the expected one we continued racing towards Beaver Island, at which point we came about and started to aim for the remarkably small shipping channel that allows passage between the islands and the mainland.
At this point night was falling and we were using the engine in order to ensure our course wasn't affected too much by the gusty wind. Eventually we saw the entrance bouys and adjusted course to pass between them and pick our way through the channel.
Having passed through the channel and into the relatively open water beyond it I went off watch and headed below to sleep until we were reaching the entrance to the Mackinaw strait. That was so we both would be awake to find our way through the channel and under the bridge that marks the point where Lake Michigan and Lake Huron meet.