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24/05/2014

Starship - ED heading EAST - day 09

SUN-FACTOR: Am frühen Nachmittag ist der Regen vorbei. Der Wind lässt nach. Die Wellen bleiben. RUN-FACTOR: Wieder viel langsamer. Schade eigentlich, die schnelle Fahrt durch den Regen hat mehr Spaß gemacht.FUN-FACTOR: Unser Salon ist nicht wieder zu erkennen. Überall hängt nasses Gewand. Eine Langzeitfolge des Regens, denn bei diesen Temperaturen und dieser Luftfeuchtigkeit trocknet nichts so schnell.. read more...


24/05/2014

Starblazer - 23/05/2014 –From one sailing club to another!

A year ago today, Friday, we cast off from our home club, Hardway Sailing Club, to head westwards. Since then most of our travels have been in the right direction except a detour into the Mediterranean for a couple of months and our Panama Canal transit which heads from northwest to southeast. Yesterday we arrived in Niue, 12 hours behind British Summer Time but not quite half way around the world.Our arrival was well timed, before the immigration team stopped working for the day, and we went ashore to clear customs and immigration.Getting ashore can be rather fraught but fortunately the seas were relatively flat. There is no pontoon, jetty or beach where you can leave the RIB in the water and all are lifted ashore onto the quay.I scrambled up one set of steps, then John positioned the. read more...


24/05/2014

Sweet Pearl - Suwarrow --> Niue - 2.Tag - Weiter gehts

Gestern haben wir uns von der wunderschönen Insel Suwarrow verabschiedet und sind jetzt unterwegs nach Niue (530 Seemeilen). Es war ein herrlicher Tag gestern - himmlisches Segeln ohne Wellen und genug Wind. Heute machen wir Slalom um die Squalls, haben mehr Wind, kommen deshalb aber auch schneller voran. Wir hoffen am Montag anzukommen. Ansonsten gibts nicht viel zu berichten - wir sind beide gesund und munter:). Cheers. Tom. read more...


24/05/2014

American Spirit II - Day 138; Leaving Suwarrow for Niue, Humpback Whales , the Book Dark Wave & a Marlin Hit; Thursday, May 22, 2014

Up at 7:30 AM. Rain showers passing by. Closed hatches. Free & Breezy was weighing anchor and getting ready to head out to Niue. At 9:08 AM Sweet Pearl departed, followed by Circe at 9:38 AM.Had our last breakfast for a while in a tranquil anchorage. Bacon, eggs, pear halves and toast. And coffee. Tomorrow we'll be eating breakfast maybe standing on our heads. After the 9:30 AM net, we put stowed our dingy. This is a laborious process. First the motor is dismantled. The electric motor is reduced to 3 pieces: handle, battery and shaft. Then the seat is removed and the two oars. Then the drain is opened in the back of the dingy at the base of the transom. We then pull the dingy around to the side of the boat and stand it vertically, draining any water in it. Once we have it on deck,the. read more...


23/05/2014

Gertha 4 - Orange Turtles

LAT 38.35 N LON 46.26   Business as usual today. It’s a hot, sunny day. The ocean being kind to us.We’re cruising above seven knots bang in course toward Horta. To be honest, itfeels good. The last few days have been difficult, and hard to articulate.Skipper described it in passing earlier as feeling hollow. I feel similar. Itwas not an easy thing sailing away from the search area. But we had done what wecould. I’ve thought and written about the whole thing, but I’m not sure it’suseful or appropriate to publish here. We are not happy to have left the searchoperation, we are sad that we didn’t find anything helpful, and we are eager tohear some good news.   But, in a way, we are back to business as usual. If you can call it that.Last night, as I was on watch, with Mauritz asleep. read more...


24/05/2014

Webster - Treacle miners demonstrate their prowess

Friday 23rd May 2014. Postion 36 50'N 40 19'WNoon DTD 570nmThe wind dropped a little this morning early on so we shook out the reefs and romped on. Good job we are not in the military otherwise Dave would have been on yet another charge for sleeping on duty. He can't hide the fact that he's asleep given the audible signs given out; he would contend that he is making sure whales don't come too close by warning them of our presence. He managed to wake up in time for the end of his watch this morning just in time to go to bed again; if he slept any more it would not be worth his while getting up!The sailing has been brilliant today with plenty of wind from a good direction for us (SE) allowing us to close reach direct to Horta. The boat is powered up and loving it. Igor and I were helming. read more...


24/05/2014

Firefly - Suwar-WOW

Firefly's anchor was lifted at 0700 this morning (Friday 23rd May) and we left the shelter of Anchorage Island on the fringe reef of Suwarrow lagoon. We, along with several other World ARC boats managed to double the planned stop to 6 days - even that feels too short a period to spend in such a fantastic place, especially when we know its unlikely we will ever return.On Wednesday morning we went back to the reef where the Manta Rays are frequently seen. Having snorkeled around the reef looking for them - Susie found them 'gliding' in the area under where we had anchored the dinghys! It appears as though the reef is where they come for 'cleansing' - they swim slowly while lots of smaller fish provide a cleaning service. We saw 2 - one about 3 meters wing tip to wing tip, black on top with. read more...


24/05/2014

Sojourner - A good day at sea

The past couple of days have been unexpectantly good.We were advised yesterday morning that we would have to motor for a day or two until we found wind.After three hours of motoring,though, the wind did fill in and we sailed the rest of the day.Went to bed last night with OSPREY a mile or so off our stern but seemingly headed in another course.This morning I was surprised to seem them still with us.After coffee, we raised the spinnaker thinking we would smoke them but, instead, they pulled away and over the horizon as we tried to get a good sail set. Most of us accepted that OSPREY had beaten us but Bob went about tweaking the spinnaker lines. He had us up to 7+ knots for most of the day! That, and Paul had a insight as to how to replumb the water maker hoses to by pass a malfunctioning. read more...


23/05/2014

Defyr - Towards Azores: everything wet

There's a joke about sailing:Sailing is like standing underneath a cold shower with your full foul weather gear on. One of your friends is throwing an extra bucket of water on to your face every now and then and another friend tearing up your 100€ bills.Well that's what it was like last night except also pitch dark with couple of lightnings. I'm starting to wonder could I tape up my 100€ bills, take them back to the bank and buy a tv instead..?The wind went down a little today, which I thought was a relief! I was dreaming of easy, calm ride to make proper food and take a shower and clean up a bit, since everything is wet! BUT NO, the captain wants to catch Webster, so we added more sails and the ride continues to be bumpy with a 15 degree angle."It should be lighter tomorrow" the captain. read more...


23/05/2014

Andromeda of Plymouth - It's Friday, we're in Love.......

N30:17:879 W65:27:359   First off today Happy 63rd Wedding Anniversary,Virginia and Brian, aka Susan's Mum and Dad, we shall give you a calllater......   We have decided we must be in love with ourlifestyle, although at times you do wonder why? Obviously we joined ARC Europeto sail in company, well at least at the beginnings of the legs and then ofcourse there are the opportunities ashore to get to know a group of peoplebetter and maybe make life long friends.  We have certainly made manyfriends on the rallies we have taken part in so far and it is great when weget together to reminise.  Many new friends are made in the ports that arecalled into as well, and there is always the pleasure in arriving somewhere tofind you know a few folk. Great friends are. read more...


23/05/2014

Anna Sophia - Oceaandagboek deel 2, dag 2

Positie: 33 00.086 N, 58 58.633 WCOG: 90 gr.SOG: 7,4 ktsDagafstand: 159 nmZeilvoering: Gr + GWind: 19 kts@219 gr.Weer: lichtbewolktZicht: goedGolven: 1,5 mLuchtdruk: 1026 mbarWatertemperatuur: 20,9Zieken: 0Nog steeds zeilen we East. Nog steeds proberen we de stroom depressies bovenons te vermijden. Getrakteerd werden we op een stoofpot van kruiszeeenschuinachter van zo'n 4 meter; resultaat van voorbije depressie tegennormale windgolven in!Anna Sophia deinde meestal beheerst over de oceaan.We raakten optogen over de snelheid, maar toen deze net voor de nacht de 8knopenaantikte, hebben we toch maar een rif in de genua gezet. Moetennatuurlijk niet hebben, dat de boel in het stikikedonker uit zijn roerloopt!Niemand te zien, zijn waarschijnlijk ook praktisch de enige die naar hetOosten varen.. read more...


23/05/2014

Flomaida II - 22.5. de Südpazifik fährt seine Krallen aus!

Heute wurden wir daran erinnert, dass Segeln auch anders sein kann!Den ganzen Tag jagte ein Squall den anderen bei Windstärken zwischen 20 und 30 Knoten und Wellen von 3-4 Metern. Der Himmel war grau und der Regen heftig.Da wir auf Halbwindkurs sind, war und ist es auszuhalten-das Wetter hat sich auch bisher (3Uhr nachts) nicht verändert.Also bestand unser Sport heute darin, die Segel einzureffen und auszureffen.Auch reichte es nur für "Dosenfutter", allerdings sehr fein und schmackhaft. Da sind die Franzosenwirklich spitze! Mit dem besonders altem und gutem Balsamico von Vittorio wurde das Linsengericht zu einem wahren Gaumenschmaus! Über Nacht lassen wir die Reffs drin, da wir den Himmel nicht beobachten können- kein Stern und kein Mond zu sehen, das ist nicht so mein Fall! Trotz. read more...


23/05/2014

Sea Eagle - Feel the love

Sitting here on my early morning watch in the dark of night I can't help thinking of the 4 lads from Cheeki Rafiti and praying they will be found. These situations are I guess the realities of sailing.Setting the afore mentioned aside for a moment - we are so thoroughly enjoying being back on the water. Sea Eagle is flying along sometimes hitting over 10 knots. To add to this and at long last we have had dolphins around us and their presence lifts the spirits even more, its as if they are feeling your pleasure too.Last night at around sunset we picked up communication from Anna Sophia, it's nice to know there's someone not that far away and to hear that all is good with them.Food on board has been great so far with a new addition to the menu, "The Big Mac omelette" and spirits are high.I. read more...


23/05/2014

Starship - ED heading EAST - day 09

SUN-FACTOR: Wetter-Achterbahn. Nach der Front kommt die Fastflaute. 6 Knoten Wind von achtern. :-( RUN-FACTOR: Langsam. Der einzige Vorteil: Beide können wir mehrere Stunden gut schlafen.FUN-FACTOR: Wenn es schon sonst nichts zu lachen gibt, ein Grieskoch zaubert immer ein Lächeln aufs Gesicht.. read more...


23/05/2014

Reberth - Fish!!

Crew, no names no pack drill, thought fish would be a change and threw out a line. Good job not hungry as they left the cork on the hook!! Maybe next time.Doing seven knots, which for us is really good. May it continue.We will be entering the search area later today but understand by then they may have scaled back. Obviously will still keep a sharp lookout. What can you say?. read more...


23/05/2014

Anettine - 23. May, morning

The last night was dark and cloudy all night, with moderate visibility. Wind around 10 knots from W gave comfortable sailing. The wind turned S just after sunrise and 15-25 knots giving good speed. We have now done 700 nm and have another 1100 to go. We met a big whale in the morning, just 50 meter away. It didn't pay Anettine any attention just kept going E.SY Anettine. read more...


05/06/2014

Happy Destiny - May 23 Calm with a chance of whales - blog 23 May

We spent last night becalmed, with genoa furled and main sheeted in.  A bit of a southwesterly breeze rose this morning and we are now making about 4 knots on a courseof 90 degrees.  Attempting to push northerly when winds permit.  High point yesterday was Don's chicken quesadilla dinner made according to his daughter's recipe.  A pod of whales joined us for dinner, swimming off our starboard beam.  A pretty day today,but we'd like a little more wind.. read more...


23/05/2014

Starship - ED heading EAST - day 08

SUN-FACTOR: Die Front erwischt uns. Um 3.00 in der Früh geht es los mit 30 kn Wind (in den Böen noch mehr) und Regen. Dietmar und ich sind waschelnass. RUN-FACTOR: Mit 30 Knoten Wind reffen wir Groß und Genua - jeweils drittes Reff. Und machen immer noch bis zu 9 Knoten SOG. Aber den Kurs können wir der Wellen wegen nicht halten. Oder "wollen" es viel mehr nicht. Denn für die Kinder wäre das kein Spaß.FUN-FACTOR: Den Kindern macht der Regen nichts aus und auch nicht der starke Wind. Sie kuscheln zu dritt in ihrer Kabine und sehen sich DVDs an.. read more...


23/05/2014

American Spirit II - Day 137; Most Dangerous Snorkel, Climbing into a Dingy, Laundry, SSB Problem, Tom Neale Party on Beach & Coordinating New Crew Flights; Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Up 7:41 AM. Cloudy, small rain shower drifting by. Closed all the hatches. Seems like it happens every morning at Suwarrow.A rainbow at 8:11 AM. Faint. I'd give it a 3 on a 10 scale. Two boats, Skylark of London (I wonder where that boat is from?) and Dash Away left the atoll before 8:30 AM.I filled out the custom forms for Niue before it got too hot outside. That way I won't sweat on the forms.Always have to keep a rag handy to wipe the sweat off your wrists as you fill out these forms. Niue, which has a population of 1,500, requires more data on entry than any place we've been to for some time. They even ask how much money you have onboard, and they want a list of all drugs on board. Should I list the Cialis or Viagra? Just kidding. At 9:00 AM I violated a cardinal rule on the boat. I. read more...


23/05/2014

Shenanigan - Spirit of the Rally

The Spirit of the Rally – we were asked to capture this for the ARC Europephoto competition.  The spirit of this rally – that’s tricky – yes thereare the parties, people eating, drinking and socialising but that happens onlots of rallies.  The spirit of this rally begins with the professionalismand charm of the World Cruising Club but the true spirit is found at sea. The camaraderie, the travelling as part of a fleet, daily support emails, thefamiliar voices on the radio and the concern for fellow ralliers andmariners.  Some we will meet again on our travels in the years to come,some we may not but we have all been touched by the Spirit of the Rally. OnShenanigan we all agree whether crossing an ocean for the first or tenth time –do it every time with a World Cruising. read more...


23/05/2014

Gertha 4 - Simon's Lay Day and the Search for Cheeki Rafiki

LAT 38.31 N LON 49.05 W   “If I were you I should get some sleep.” Skipper said to me. Admittedly, itwas a welcome relief. We’d been hit by a little rain and I was exhausted fromstaring out into the darkest night we’ve had yet. We’d spent the day hammeringit up to get ourselves well into the search area. The day had given us blessedweather; a summer day by all accounts, with perfect vision to assist the search.Simon and I were on watch, and the conditions had deteriorated considerably. AsI scuttled off we were pulling about half a knot and Gertha was being thrownabout in a horrible boil of water. Skipper seemed strangely calm. When I gotbelow deck I crossed paths with Mauritz.  “How you doing?” I asked as I began to peel off my water-logged gear. Heresponded more or less. read more...


Gertha 4 - Simon's Lay Day and the Search for Cheeki Rafiki
Gertha 4 - Simon's Lay Day and the Search for Cheeki Rafiki
23/05/2014

Shenanigan - Night Sailing

A few nights ago Brian said he had experienced the best sailing of hiswhole life.  The wind was manageable, the seas provided the entertainmentand exhilaration.  Christopher recorded speeds of 12 knots on his watch;which is double what we usually do.  Last night was not so entertaininghowever!  I was an hour into my watch settled with my Kindle, and had juststated reading ‘The Kite Runner’, the Hydrovane was steering a good course, whenat 3am the wind and sea began to pick up pace. Then it started to rain. Time toreef. I woke Brian as I needed a bit of help – we needed three reefs in the mainsail and had to furl a good amount of jib and we were still careeringalong.  The rain became torrential and we became very, very wet. Just tomake sure we were soaked to the. read more...


22/05/2014

Webster - "Wales Ahoy!" , power over time and miscellaneous inconsequences

Thursday 22nd May 2014 Position 36 14' N 44 11' WWhat happened on this very day,is that Charlie - the mighty Skipper - decided that he may,do everything his way,and that on time there is no lock,so - just upon his wish - he changed O'clock.And so on Webster yacht,sailing at some 8+ knot,he declared: be it twelve - and this at ten,for entire boat, both things and men. Igor 'Mustard' Bele - 22/05/2014 Yes we changed the clocks today - much to mutterings from Neal who thought he was being done somehow but couldn't quite work out how, or who by! Actually it was all of us that benefited by moving the clocks forward, but me especially as I did a double watch which was two hours shorter. It has just occurred to me how to win this leg to Horta given that there is no way we are as fast as Sparta. read more...


22/05/2014

Puerki - De Bojo viert feest

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22/05/2014

Sojourner - Four Men and a Boat

A little late for introductions but you might wonder who would cross a big ocean in a small boat. We are: Bob, a sailboat whisperer with a lot of initiative, observant, and always thinking of what could make the present better. Bob is everybody's preferred cook. James, a Lake Michigan sailor, with a chess player's sense of consequential thinking, and the first guy we call upon for a repair needing a needle and thread. He also is the only one who knows where all the food is stored Must save James!. Paul, a very good problem solving diagnostician, tenacious in the face of a technical challenge , has a very helpful base knowledge of electronics and other systems and is very easy to share a cockpit with. Me, I put the boat and crew together and have been thinking of a trip like this for. read more...


22/05/2014

Starblazer - 22/05/2014 – Not what we came here for!

Yesterday morning the dawn started brightening the sky and the clouds ahead were looking rather grey.The sun came up behind us, with a few little clouds.Normally, on the course we are sailing, the wind is coming mainly from either side of astern so clouds ahead will blow away, but not yesterday.The wind was very light and slowly backed around the compass overnight from north to northwest and on to southwest during the day.We are heading southwest!The rain started at about 0800 but was not drenching type rain, more short showers of big spots.The radar showed it was moving in on us from both sides and ahead.It started clearing late morning and the cockpit dried out by 1400.We motored almost all day, three times we turned the engine off and sailed, the longest period was three hours.We gave. read more...


22/05/2014

Sea Eagle - And we're off!!

And we're off!!We slipped lines on the town quay in St George at 19:45 and headed out into the bay. I'm pleased to announce at 20:00 we crossed the start line 1st in Class A and were leading the pack heading into the town cut. Urmm, hold on a minute, what pack? Where's the fleet gone??? Oh that's right.......WE'RE A WEEK LATE!!!!Let's rewind just over a week to the day before the restart to the Azores. Everything seemed to be going so well with the prep. The provisioning was complete and everything neatly stowed away. Ali had updated her inventory of the ships stores and we had the familiar index's on the inside of cupboards and bilges. Sea Eagle had been washed down and polished ready for the start line photo's. The crew were into their 24hr 'drying out' period before the big day.. read more...


20/05/2014

Puerki - Stemmingswisselingen

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22/05/2014

Andromeda of Plymouth - (We're bound for) South Australia and seemingly on a route to nowhere.......

N28:54:300   W65:54:635   Well not quite South Australia but the time andprogress this trip is taking we could we be. After three days in very lightwinds where we used most the fuel motor-sailing, we managed a few hours sailingbefore another high pressure system embraced us, and progress was halted oncemore. So drifting is what we are doing, and not very quickly either. We havesome fuel remaining but we'll need that for the final part of the trip - sofilling the fuel tank and extra containers on deck is going to be quite a costlyaffair.   The sea is very flat at the moment, there arealmost no clouds, and zephyrs of breeze flowing around, one or two that stick inthe sails. It's been confirmed that we probably did see Fin Whales theother day from our description. read more...


22/05/2014

Flomaida II - 21.5. ein Segeltag mit hohem Genussfaktor und Squallbild

Seit 24 Stunden gibt es den idealen Wind für Flomaida. Er kommt aus 70/80 Grad und lässt uns relativ aufrecht mit 8-9 Knoten dahingleiten, da auch kaum eine Welle die gleichmäßigen Bewegungen unterbricht. 2x haben wir einen Squall (30-35 Knoten Wind) abgewettert, den wir gut auf dem Radar und am Himmel sehen konnten. Das heißt, die Segel wurden gerefft und das Schiff so gesteuert, dass es vor dem Wind ablaufen konnte. Meist dauert so ein Squall nur 5-10 Minuten mit erst vielem Wind und dann wolkenbruchartigem Regen. Leider sind etwas schwächere Squalls auf dem Radar nicht zu sehen, daher ist speziell nachts doch Vorsicht geboten, da man ja den Himmel und die Wolkenbildung nicht sehen kann, wenn der Mond noch nicht da ist.Erstaunlich ist übrigens, dass wir seit den 4 Tagen auf See bisher. read more...


22/05/2014

Happy Destiny - May 22 - blog 22 May

Light winds.  Sailing under  gennaker on course 117.  Good day for a little personal hygiene.  About 950 to Horta.. read more...


Flomaida II - 21.5. ein Segeltag mit hohem Genussfaktor und Squallbild
Flomaida II - 21.5. ein Segeltag mit hohem Genussfaktor und Squallbild
22/05/2014

Anna Sophia - Oceaandagboek deel 2, dag 1

Positie: N32 58.527 W062 01.793COG: 87 gr.SOG: 5,9 ktsDagafstand: 143,7 nmZeilvoering: GR + GWind: ZW 15 ktsWeer: lichtbewolktZicht: goedGolven:ZW 3 mLuchtdruk: 1025 mbWatertemperatuur: 216 grZieken: 0Woensdagmorgen 6.45 uur; eindelijk starten we de Anna Sophia. Gisterentopten we de diesel af, betaalden onze plek in het havenkommetje, liepen nog1x naar de supermarkt en kregen toestemming s´avonds al uit te klaren!Gebruikelijk is dit laatste niet, maar de ARC deelnemers hebben kennelijkeen streepje voor."Bermuda Radio, Bermuda Radio, here Anna Sophia, AnnaSophia, over". 10 Minuten later krijgen we eveneens toestemming de havente verlaten, heerlijk we zijn weer vrij!!Wat werden we goed opgevangen door de ARC na onze gedwongen terugtochtvorige week donderdag. Heel snel werd de reparatie. read more...


22/05/2014

Defyr - Towards Azores: half way there

We got a message from our support group at home that an area of strong winds are chasing us. We should go as fast east as possible to avoid it. So that's what we have been doing. Keeping it over 7 knots and keeping fingers crossed that that is enough. ARC Europe started as a rally, turned into a race and now became "let's just get the hell out of here!".We passed midway mark yesterday. We had a small hooray, but didn't really have a mood for celebration knowing there's still people lost at sea.The day before yesterday night was the closest we were of the search area, we kept our eyes north for any sighting of lights, flares, debris or anything, but we saw nothing. We send our strength to Cheeki Rafikis families, friends and the search group. We truly wish today would be the day of good. read more...


22/05/2014

American Spirit II - Day 136; Low Pressure South of Niue, Swimming with Sharks (again), Generator Stopped Working and SSB Problem; Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Up at 6:41 AM. Rain shower, again. Closed hatches. Seems like every morning we get a rain shower just after sunrise.A catamaran not with our fleet departed the anchorage at 7:16 AM. Against the Suwarrow Rules, in that the rules state a boat should not leave until noon. Reason? Conjecture is that its safer to leave with a high sun because you can see the coral heads easier; and the Cook Island government types don't want any more sunken boats in their lagoon. One of the boats indicated that a low pressure system south of Niue may be a cause of concern. Some of the boats in the anchorage may delay their leaving Suwarrow from Wednesday to Thursday as a result. We'll download weather information Wednesday night and decide for ourselves if staying another day here is advisable. I can think of. read more...


22/05/2014

Anettine - 19. -22. May

We have had problems to access the net, but here we are again.Little wind is slowing us down. The sailing is still great, especial the genaker sailing. One crew is still suffering from seasickness, but we do see improvement. The previous night was dark and rain full, and we were surprised with 46 knots of wind and water came down as in a waterfall. It lasted only 20 minutes.Tonight we enjoy sailing under clear sky with the moon and the stars as bright as can be. A strong contrast to what we had the last night.Skipp. read more...


22/05/2014

Webster - Half way!

Wednesday 22nd May 2014 Position 35 46'N 47 00'W noon run 130nm The wind was relatively quiet all night last night and was forecast to build again during the day from the SE veering South. The boat was creaming along on starboard tack at 7.5 knots on a course of 090M, nearly direct to destination. We saw a lobster pot drift past proudly displaying its marker flag, no. 81, a long way from home I imagine as I really doubt anyone would be dropping these things 900 miles from the coast in 2 miles of water.David Smith on Easy Rider a 44 ft catamaran called us up this morning. We had passed close by him during the night and were now only a few miles ahead. It appears hehad just run into a sleeping whale and come to a shuddering halt from 7 knots, a frightening prospect in anything other than a. read more...


22/05/2014

Ballytrim - Ballytrim Day 8 21/5//2104

We have been 'charging along all day', often making 8+ knots and having to reduce sail to keep down the stress and strain on the yacht...... The enthusiasm to do well is infectious, so on my part there's also a certain amount of restraint/restraining going on so we don't stretch ourselves too soon. There's several days to go yet and we need to keep fit healthy and alert. So far I can say all of that's working and the team spirit remains as high spirited as ever!!!!!! ( that's lots of banter and 'Mickey taking'. ) One of our group has become known as "Velcro" - because he seems to be stuck and unable to get out of bed!!! Who do we think that is?Last of the fruit was eaten today, and the last of the fresh bread yesterday. Laurie, our youngest crew member keeps whistling for wind, as he is. read more...


21/05/2014

Skyelark of London - Our stay in Suvarov

Life is very hard, on and around the island atoll of Suvarov in the Northern Cook Islands, with its pristine verdant Motus and warm, well stocked waters of multi shades of blues and greens encircled by the 35 mile long coral reef.............shallow snorkelling waters within the lagoon, in contrast to the 1000s feet of vertical shelf outside the reef, where 5 foot high breakers mark paradise's boundary from the wide dark seas of seaming nothingness. Skipper Dan broke the heartbreaking news this morning that we would have to stay here yet a further day, as the winds needed to blow us south west to Niue, our next port of call, have yet to materialise and would require a potential motoring distance of at least 300 nmiles.This is in addition to yesterday's World ARC's gut wrenching. read more...


21/05/2014

Reberth - Message from the skipper!!

Today has been one of mixed blessings. First a very heavy squall which drenched and chilled. It took over three hours for the winds to return. On the plus side they were visited by a couple of pods of dolphins. Always a very uplifting experience. Last night they had Mac and Cheese for supper and the skipper decided to open tin tomatoes and peppers to have with it. Bad move as he hadn't read the label, HOT PEPPERS!!! Don't think one of the crew was too impressed. Oh well, they are now nearly a third of the way to the Azores.Sent from my iPad. read more...


21/05/2014

Gertha 4 - cheeki rafiki search

37.17.8 N  49.38.0 W   It is 21.00 UT, we have entered the search area, made contact with a US  Coastguard airplane who was overhead, he confirmed to keep a good lookout. At dusk we will reduce sail, about 22.00 UT and go slow in the night northwest, at first light we will head north east across the search area. After this there will be a limit to what we can do as still 7 or 8 days toAzores and as Gertha has shed part of her propeller we have no option to engineat speed if necessary to clear an Azores high if it builds.   Simon  . read more...


21/05/2014

Starblazer - 21/05/2014 – Electricity is a necessary evil!

I’ll be brief, I promise not to moan too much.The systems on the boat require a lot of energy: the navigation lights, instruments, fridge, freezer, watermaker, domestic lighting, water pump, bilge pumps, autopilot etc. Yes I know we could survive without all of these, as they did in bygone times but we choose not to.We have a large battery bank of (originally) about 600 amp hours for domestics and 120 for the engine start.The solar panels can produce enough power during the day to meet our needs and put some charge into the batteries which, unfortunately, are slowly dying and will not hold their charge as well as they used to.The engine has two alternators, one to charge the domestic battery bank, which is working well, and one to charge the engine battery which now appears to have. read more...


21/05/2014

Flomaida II - 20.5. ein fast perfekter Tag.......

wenn nur die Geschwindigkeit etwas höher wäre!Noch vor dem Frühstück haben wir wieder den Parasailor gesetzt. Das warwirklich ein aufwendiges Manöver. Durch das schnelle Bergen letzte Nacht,hatten wir Mühe, die vielen Taue wieder in die richtige Lage zu bringen. Esist wirklich wie verhext, wie Taue sich vertörnen können! Nach ca 1 Stdstand er dann endlich wieder in voller Größe, nur leider gab es sehr wenigWind, sodass wir nur 4-5 Seemeilen/ Knoten Geschwindigkeit pro Stundemachten den ganzen Tag-und das bei einer Strecke von 1050 Meilen! BeiDunkelheit haben wir ihn dann wieder brav weggepackt - diesmal ordentlich!Nun hat der Wind etwas zugelegt,sodass wir mit Genua und Besan immerhinauch 5 Knoten/Meilen pro Stunde schafffen.Da über Niue ein böses Tief liegt und rally control ARC dankbar. read more...


21/05/2014

American Spirit II - Day 135; Welcome 'New' Readers, Sharks Circling the Boat, 2 Great Snorkels, Exploring Anchorage Island & Fidler Crabs Everywhere; Monday, May 19, 2014

While at a camp fire on Anchorage Island Sunday night a crew member of another boat told me that her mother (or was it a friend of hers?) was reading my logs. I asked her why, because I can't imagine why someone would want to read the logs from a boat that their daughter or friend was not on. The answer I received was that she did so because I wrote my logs every day, that most of the boats aren't writing logs, and that she found them interesting. So for all of you out there reading the logs of American Spirit II, people I don't know, I hope I can continue to inform and entertain you for the next 348 days. Writing logs can be very mundane, so I will try to throw in some subjects about what we're doing (and if we're doing something then all the boats are doing it),the problems we're. read more...


21/05/2014

Andromeda of Plymouth - I wanna hold your Wheeeeeeeel......I wanna hold your wheel

N28:20:527   W65:32:858   Day....let's not bother with day number, we arekeeping count but the number is currently bigger than one hand so we'll forgetit.   Wheels....well as my Mum says when she hearssomeone talking gibberish.....I had two and the wheels fell off !   Andromeda has only the one wheel, she does havepulleys and sprockets etc, but only the one steering wheel, and its getting gooduse I can tell you. We will need to buy a new cover for it when we get toEurope.  Europe you say, yes we are headed there, we are just taking thevery scenic route because of the wind we are finding out here, when there issome of course.   There are some good things about the lack of windthough, let's see, well you don't spill the tea for one . As for other. read more...


21/05/2014

Gertha 4 - Spam and Tights (Spamdex Tights)?

This morning I arose from my warm cocoon up front after having been rockedinto the loveliest of sojourns to that land of strange dreams to hear that I hadreceived a text message! Firstly, I don’t have a phone (and haven’t for abouttwo years now), secondly: we can receive texts on the sat phone?! The latterquestion obviously answered the first and as the rest of my sleepiness wascleared away by the chill up above I happily received the news that word hadcome from home! Hello mum and Paul! Thanks for sending the message. It reallymade me happy to hear from you (I’ll type somemore stuff in the post-script).   Skip, too, seems particularly chirpy today. I’d been listening to him andEmma natter on about the insulating properties of hemp, idiots and various othermiscellanea for some time,. read more...


21/05/2014

Starship - ED heading EAST - day 07

SUN-FACTOR: Wieder ein in Traumtag. Sonne, kaum Wolken, wenig Welle. Und etwas Wind. RUN-FACTOR: 5-6 Knoten in die richtige Richtung. Und ohne Schaukelei.FUN-FACTOR: Und deswegen ist Putztag angesagt. Staub wischen, putzen, Wäsche waschen. Fun-Factor :-(, aber Wohlfühl-Factor hinterher: :-).. read more...


21/05/2014

Webster - Light winds and moral dilemmas

Tuesday 20th May 2014 Position 34 48'N 49 27'W Noon run approx 110nmIt has been a slow news day today. Awoke this morning to a very light WSW breeze and the boat doing about 4 knots and reducing as the breeze drifted off. As the speed dropped below 3 knots we put on the engine for a while and dropped the sails to stop them flogging. The sun came out though and spent most of the morning sun bathing or asleep on the foredeck. We motored about 4 hours and then felt there was sufficient breeze to do at least 4 knots under sail which we did. As the wind had come into the south it was too tight for the spinnaker which was a shame, although Neal hates spinnakers and was making all sorts of reasons not to use it. Nature however prevented it by backing the wind. In this lighter stuff we are using. read more...


21/05/2014

Firefly - Suwarrow

Firefly is anchored in the lee of Anchorage Island in Suwarrow lagoon. It is stunningly beautiful and feels like we are miles from anywhere - and we are! Getting through the pass into the lagoon proved reasonably easy although it always makes the nerves go a little on edge. As the entrance to the pass is approached, the depth sounder (which has not read anything for days as the Pacific is so deep) first shows 100 metres and then counts down rapidly to below 10m. The water is so clear it looks incredibly shallow and there is a lot of current flowing out of the lagoon making the water choppy. The various reefs in the pass are easy to dodge as they are very visible and the Navionics charts on both the boat chartplotter and the I pad 'back up' proved to be spot on regarding the charting and. read more...