‘Awesome’ Summer Cruise in Longbranch to Catch a Super Moon

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While the super moon hung behind the “Awesome,” Richard Hildahl kept an eye on a spectacular sunset from the wheelhouse.
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Our view of the magnificent magenta orb rising slowly from behind Eagle Island was simply super.

There is nothing like capping a beautiful moonlit cruise on Filucy Bay with an unplanned dip in the drink.

Landlubber’s delight.

Captain’s fright.

“I wish I had gotten a picture of you,” said Richard Hildahl — captain of the 37-foot Lord Nelson Victory Tug dubbed “Awesome,” formerly the “Lady Margaret”.

That is quite all right captain.

Gilligan would have been proud.

It must be a full moon.

Exactly why we were out on the water in the first place. Hildahl and his wife Connie graciously invited my lovely bride and I for a jaunt on their lovely boat to catch the moon rise.

Not just any moon.

Sunday’s perigee full moon, also known as the super moon, was a magnificent magenta orb rising from the detritus of the day’s haze. This occurs when “earth, moon and sun are all in a line, with moon in its nearest approach to Earth,” said astrologer Richard Nolle. According to earthsky.org, Nolle is credited for coining the phrase “super moon” in 1979.

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Hildahl driving the 27-year-old Lord Nelson Victory Tug out of Filucy Bay on a sun-drenched summer evening.
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Sunlight sparkled on the glassy surface of the Longbranch waterway.
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A lovely sunset entertained us while we waited for the moon to rise.
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The cruise included a history tour of Longbranch landmarks such as the Sipple Boathouse.
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The boat’s bow provided a spectacular view of the rising moon, McNeil, Eagle and Anderson islands.

A picnic on the bow of the tug was the perfect place to enjoy the year’s largest moon rise, as we drifted on a lazy inlet with a soft summer breeze soothing our sun-drenched souls.

Smoked salmon, chicken lumpia (egg rolls), crackers topped with cream cheese and ginger jam and cherry tomatoes — fresh from a Longbranch garden — were on the menu. A few glasses of red wine and champagne finished off the lovely evening.

“There goes the moon,” said my lovely bride, pointing east over Eagle Island from the bow of the 27-year-old boat.

“David, get your cameras,” Connie said.

“That is a bright, beautiful moon,” my lovely bride declares, a glass of wine in hand.

“I wonder when we’ll see it again,” Connie asked.

According to earth sky.org, the next super moon will occur Sept. 28, 2015.


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We sat on Balch Passage enjoying stories of our lives — past and present — under a bright beautiful moon.

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