'Til the butter melts

Pursuing the cruising dream in 32' of sailing ketch

Of Lug-rigs and Men


“What kind of sail is that?”

I’ve heard that several times now.  Must be because I’m from New England or something.

When we left Maine –  2100 miles and five months ago – we had a couple sticks of wood and a large piece of brown cloth strapped to the life-line stanchions on the starboard side.  This was the sailing rig we found last summer, and which I’d begun to modify to fit our dinghy.

Begun, meaning that I’d planed the base of the mast down to fit the mast partners (the mount) in the bow of the dinghy, but had put the project aside as one of those things I’d do “along the way”, because of course I’d have plenty of time as we worked our way south, right? Riiight…

So there it sat, on the rail, collecting dirt and fading in the sun, and for almost 2000 miles we worked around it and towed the dinghy and it kinda faded into the scene, so that we hardly remembered it was there, right in plain sight. 

But finally we had some time, back in January, and nobody around to watch if it didn’t work, because we were anchored near Panther Key in the Everglades for my birthday and there was NOBODY there but us and the no-see-ums.

So finally “Chuckles” the dinghy has a new power source, and I have something to sail while Sionna is mired and immovable in Boot Key Harbor.  It’s so crowded here that if you pull up your anchors and go for a sail you instantly loose your spot, and may not be able to find another one.  So nobody moves. Ever. 

Unless it’s to a mooring (for which there is a 3-week waiting list) or to head to the Bahamas (which isn’t on our to-do list this winter).

But it sure is nice to have it doing something besides taking up space.  

And for the record, this particular sail style is referred to as a “Lug” rig, and consists of the mast, the sail (shaped as a trapezium), a Boom (along the bottom) and a Yard, along the top. I first heard about it in a story/song by that master of nautical story-telling, Gordon Bok.  Wonderful rig. Wonderful story! (Here’s the link: Peter Kagan and the wind )


Author: s/v sionna

Living the dream in 32'. We left Maine on August 18th, 2016, and have gradually worked our way south until we felt warm enough. After spending the summer in Maine, working to replenish the cruising kitty, we’re back on the boat, with plans to visit the Bahamas later in the winter. Follow our blog here, and follow our progress in map form by joining www.Farkwar.com!

2 thoughts on “Of Lug-rigs and Men

  1. That looks like so much fun!

    Liked by 1 person

    • It is! We went 3/4 mile west in the harbor yesterday to meet friends and tour an island (Pigeon Key) and I took along the rig. Heading back that afternoon the wind was favorable so we set it up and sailed home – and ran aground! ;-). Well, at least it was the dinghy, and in mud, so only hurt my pride! Loads of fun, even with wet bums!


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