I recently had the good fortune to spend a week aboard Alwihta, a 28-foot Maurice Griffiths design that was built by a friend of mine, Fritz Seegers of Kalmazoo. Fritz is an artist and marine illustrator who draws regularly for Good Old Boat Magazine. (goodoldboat.com). He was cruising aboard, as he does every summer, when I caught up with at DeTour Village, the eastern-most tip of Michigan’s Upper Peninsula.
DeTour Passage is the narrows there, on the St. Mary’s River which connects northern Lake Huron with Lake Superior at the Sault Ste. Marie locks. It’s a great place to sail and see freighters up close as they navigate the shipping channel. Our plan was to explore several islands in the area, but our goal proved aspirational. Though we dropped anchor and spent the night at two of them, heavy weather and intermittent problems with the roller furling headsail limited our days on the water.
It was a delightful trip just the same and great opportunity to sail together again, as we have many times over the years, given the constraints of COVID-19 last year.
Alwihta was built 40 years ago by Fritz, in Kalamazoo. It’s a hull design based on the Kylix design that Griffiths, the British boat designer, author and yachtsman, built for himself at 70-years old for retirement. Griffiths was the editor of Yachting Monthly, a British sailing magazine, for 40 years. He died in 1979.
To see more of the trip, check out this short (2 minutes, 30 seconds) video on my YouTube channel: youtu.be/as5igLY8FSk Enjoy!