Hugh and Julie Covert are living their dream, off the grid on Drummond Island, just beyond the eastern end of the Upper Peninsula. The owners of Drummond Island Tall Ship Company took it to the next level when they decided to build the Schooner Huron Jewel, a 78-foot, gaff-rigged centerboard tall ship designed by Capt. Hugh. The two-masted schooner is the most ambitious of the several boats he’s built and, with the help of more than 50 volunteers over the course of three years, they launched her in 2018. Huron Jewel offers two- and four-hour and full day sails in surrounding Lake Huron, and multi-day trips beyond. It’s also a floating bed and breakfast.
“If you want to see Drummond at its best, there’s nothing like seeing it from the water,” says Julie. “The boat has a shallow draft, so we can sail close to the shore and we see deer and eagles.”
Of the passengers they’ve welcomed aboard, “We have people who’ve never been sailing before, and sailors who cannot sail by themselves anymore. We show them how to raise sails, and how the rigging works, or let them take the helm.” Others are content to sit back. “They just want to enjoy the peace and tranquility of being out on the water.”
Photo courtesy of Schooner Huron Jewel