Thursday, January 18, 2007

From Away

Linda Vetter

The schooner Zodiac is a Maine built schooner that few there know still exists. She was launched two years after Nathaniel Bowditch at Hogdon Bros. of East Boothbay and has the same famous designer, William H. Hand (Bowdoin.)

At 127 feet on deck she is nearly the length of Victory Chimes but carries just two masts. Her design is meant to be exactly as the traditional fishing schooners like American Eagle. The photo shows her reefed in without her main as she heads under the Golden Gate Bridge. She was the last working sailing pilot vessel in America and is now owned by a non profit that operates her.

Zodiac's home port is Bellingham Washington. She sails windjammer-like cruises in the San Juan and Gulf Islands and is manned by volunteers.

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