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Widago - Halloween on "S" Dock
Widago - Halloween on
03/11/2015

Sweet Caroline - Last days of Preparation

We are in Portsmouth, last week countdown... only 6 days away from our departure. Kirk and I arrived on Saturday afternoon about 3pm. It was so exciting coming in the marina and seeing all the Caribbean 1500 flags, and there are more being raised every day. We got here just in time to tie up, shower and go to the first Happy Hour to meet some of our fellow cruisers. We were able to walk downtown to a few restaurants and shops -- we'll wait for a car to get groceries though. Our Safety Inspection was scheduled for Sunday at 11am. I wanted to walk down to the local UMC service, but since I am assigned as the primary safety person, I had to guide Peter Burch through our boat showing him all the through hull plugs, ditch bag, and I was all ready to demonstrate my ability to get the liferaft. read more...


03/11/2015

Nordic Belle II - Nordic Belle II checks into Portsmouth

We arrived Monday November 2nd at noon after a morning of motoring in the rain.We checked in and later we did a preliminary safety check.Looks like we need some more flares and to finish up some of the safety preparation.All looks good for this coming Sunday for a cold and windy start.Torstein BraatenNordic Belle IINordicbelle2.wordpress.com. read more...


03/11/2015

Annabella - Options open

In the search for alternative transportation to BVI we have come up with at least one option below.Tracker is now installed on Annabella's stern rail so if desired you can keep apprised of our progress via the blog. We leave Sunday,assuming weather is favorable.Jeff Harper (Harpo) has arrived. We await John Irving to complete the Minnow's crew.More later9CD35340-88D4-4942-AB45-D76AFB1962F2. read more...


Annabella - Options open
Annabella - Options open
03/11/2015

Starblazer - 02/11/2015 – Sailing and fishing

For the first 4 hours, ‘sailing’ down the west coast of Reunion, we were in the wind shadow of the island so motored but had a lovely sail from early afternoon for about 24 hours.This was followed by about 16 hours of motoring, then motor sailing until we switched off the engine at 0800.We are now sailing again!One reason for motor-sailing yesterday was the adverse current which slowed us down to 4 knots.While the sailing has been a bit of a mixed bag, the fishing seems to be history repeating itself. John put out both lines but attached mine to a metal planning device, designed to drag the line down below the surface.As the planer has a lot of drag the line from the rod is connected to the planer’s line with a rubber band between a swivel on the planer and a swivel clip on my line.The. read more...


03/11/2015

Luna Quest - Tuesday, 3rd November, 2015

Noon Position: 27.38S 49.30EDaily run: 162 logged milesA stable fresh northerly breeze kept Luna Quest with two reefs in the mainsail on a course of 230 degrees towards a waypoint some 200 miles south of Madagascar. Not that we shall make that waypoint as we are expecting a cold front to hit us some time early this evening followed by strong southwesterlies. We have made south as much as possible to give us a reasonable angle to the wind on our way to Richards Bay. It will be a wet sail with much water cascading over the boat, while the swell and the waves are expected to be not less than 3 meters high. We spent all morning preparing the boat and ourselves. Julia has cooked a generous supply of chicken, while I secured the ATU as best I could (which had departed from its fastenings. read more...


02/11/2015

Why Not - "Why not's" signal flags.

It is starting to get exciting, with a list as long as your arm of jobs to do before the start of the ARC. One very important job is getting our signal flags up and hopefully they are in the correct order! - Richard & Tracey on Why Not.IMG_1209. read more...


Why Not - "Why not's" signal flags.
Why Not -
02/11/2015

Chimo - Reisverslag #2 ARC+

We kunnen ons snel inschrijven bij de ARC, omdat het erg rustig is deze ochtend. Het regende pijpenstelen en we konden zo doorlopen. De veiligheidsinspectie, die we de dag erop hadden, verliep feilloos. Alles in orde en alles goedgekeurd. We zijn de 9e boot pas. Heel veel boten missen wat. Vandaag met de bus op pad. De ARC ondersteunt het project om bossen aan te planten. We hebben met 35 andere ARC+ zeilers 200 bomen geplant. Dit is het 6e jaar dat dit gedaan wordt en vandaag hebben wij een start gemaakt met het tweede bos. Toen de Spanjaarden zo'n 500 jaar geleden de Canarische eilanden veroverden hebben ze alle bossen van Gran Canaria gekapt. Het hout gebruikten ze voor huizen, boten, brandstof etc. Deze vrijwilligersprojecten zijn een mooi initiatief, maar helaas is slechts 1% van de. read more...


Chimo - Reisverslag #2 ARC+
Chimo - Reisverslag #2 ARC+
02/11/2015

Starblazer - 02/11/2015 – Exploring La Reunion

Wednesday also threatened rain but, undeterred, we set off to visit the Cirque de Salazie, part of a UNESCO World Heritage Site.Originally the island was created by the eruption of Piton des Neiges, now dormant for about 30,000 years.Three large craters collapsed, rivers cut twisting gorges through the rock and the cirques are the remnants of the craters. Two have roads twisting and climbing to the villages established in them, the third, Mafate, has only footpaths leading in. This latter one is a mecca for walkers with accommodation available, needless to say we didn’t visit it!Not unusually, we were in the outside lane when the very poorly sign posted exit sped by but, according to the map, the next turning was an alternative approach.It was until they closed the river bridge for. read more...


02/11/2015

Luna Quest - Monday, 2nd November, 2015

Noon Position: 26.16S 51.52EDaily run: 137 logged milesA 2kn north-setting ocean current slowed our progress southward to 3 knots, while the swell did its best to slam the sails as hard as it could. By 6pm squalls had developed trying to assail Luna Quest. One such squall overtook us taking away the wind we had and giving us rain and turbulent air instead. As Luna Quest was being steered by the Hydrovane, it followed the wind it was given by the squall, turning her round due east and then due west. Once it had passed, all wind fell away leaving Luna Quest to wallow in sloppy seas with much banging and crashing of the sails. All this occurred in the middle of supper time, which made eating a jumpy experience. At 6.45pm we took all sail in and turned the engine on to give us some stability. read more...


01/11/2015

Exody - Days 294/295 - Au Revoir La Reunion, Farewell Fay

The last baguette was delivered early by ARC yellowshirt Victor on his rented scooter - home territory for him, albeit a displaced part of France amid the Indian Ocean.Elder daughter Fay sadly left Saturday after two weeks on board taking in the contrasts of multicultural Mauritius and european outpost La Reunion.We were happy that she was able to spend the day before her flight home with departing crew from Allegro as we set sail simultaneously from Le Port.For a full fortnight we had an excuse for a holiday from boat tasks, and astute readers will note that I also took a holiday from logging days 276 to 293 - the Mauritius and Reunion stopovers and the short 130 mile passage between.At both places we were moored against walls in busy ports so quite a contrast to the turquoise remote. read more...


01/11/2015

Annabella - Arrived in Portsmouth

Here we are joining up with the ARC 1500 crowd in Portsmouth VA just in time to see the first load of Christmas trees headed North for the beginning of the season.Been a busy couple of days so far but fun. Safety inspection by Peter Burch was more than just that, it was a walk around information download from Peter to us on a variety of topics safety and otherwise. Thanks.Finally chased down a stubborn fresh water leak before heading out to meet other cruisers (not swingers, Liz) at a get acquainted cocktail party.Today is a cleaning day in anticipation of the arrival of our friend and crew member, Harpo, tomorrow. Until later IMG_0240. read more...


Annabella - Arrived in Portsmouth
Annabella - Arrived in Portsmouth
01/11/2015

Luna Quest - Sunday, 1st November, 2015

Noon Position: 25.06S 53.35EDaily run: 147 logged milesWhereas the night before was rough with strong winds from the Southeast, last night was the opposite with light winds from the Northeast and an uncomfortable sea that caused much banging of the sails. Our progress slowed markedly as a result and what with the banging of the sails we were very tempted to take them down and motor, but we did not in the hope the wind would return, which it did towards the end of the night, just enough to fill the sails. The fleet set off yesterday aiming for a waypoint some 200 miles south of Madagascar in the hope of making for Richards Bay on a westerly course when the strong southwesterlies, supposedly, arrive on Thursday. The bigger boats will have no problem getting there in time, but the smaller. read more...


31/10/2015

Chimo - Reisverslag 1 ARC+

We zijn aangekomen in Las Palmas. In 2012 waren we hier ook om de ARC met alle feestelijkheden te bekijken en het voelde als een mijlpaal in onze reis om hier nu met onze eigen boot aan te komen. We hebben een fijne plek toegewezen gekregen en hebben ons inmiddels ingeschreven in de ARC+.  We zijn zo lang bezig geweest met de voorbereiding en nu gaat het steeds vastere vorm krijgen. We kregen grote pakketten papier die we rustig doorkijken terwijl buiten de regen, helaas, met bakken uit de hemel valt. We hebben ingeschreven voor diverse workshops en lezingen en gaan maandag een boom planten. De ARC organisatie wilde iets terug doen voor de gastvrije ontvangst van alle zeilers in Las Palmas en aangezien de natuur hier bedreigd wordt is dit initiatief ontstaan. Inmiddels voor de. read more...


Chimo - Reisverslag 1 ARC+
Chimo - Reisverslag 1 ARC+
31/10/2015

Luna Quest - Saturday, 31st October, 2015

Noon Position: 23.08S 54.37ERun since La Reunion: 164 logged milesDestination: Richards Bay, South AfricaThe harbour walls in La Reunion were anything but inviting. Large black lorry tyres were suspended here and there and occasionally there was a steel ladder projecting from the wall to allow you to scale it from the boat. Luna Quest would not have felt comfortable tied up. As luck would have it, we were directed to raft up to Wayward Wind, a two-masted 17-ton Hans Christian that had come in 5 minutes before us. The World Arc had laid on a tour of the island and of its one active volcano in the South. It took all day to get round the island, but access to the volcano itself had been closed for safety reasons. Nevertheless, we had a great impression of the island and decided to rent a. read more...


31/10/2015

Firefly - The Monsoon begins

Its Halloween and Firefly is anchored in the small channel off a village called Puneba in the Lingga Regency. We are only 20 miles south of the equator and its hot and humid.The trip from Belitung took 5 days as we completed the 200+ miles in day hops, avoiding being at sea at night and sailing most of the way. We stopped at Gelasa Island and twice on Bangka. Peckacang Island was spectacular so we had a lay day there before finishing the trip ina thunderstorm of 'biblical' proportions. Clearly the monsoon was starting as we left Belitung and we could see heavy rains forecast over Borneo in particular. It did not actually rain on Firefly until we reached Peckacang and despite some thunder and lightening on that occasion it was not that heavy.The visibility as we sailed to Gelasa and. read more...


29/10/2015

Sweet Caroline - The adventure begins

It's been a couple of years since our Bahamas adventure, so now it's time to start the next adventure.I'm typing this on a plane flying back from Tucson, AZ where I've been on a project for the last 21 months.Mary just said goodbye to her Duke Energy friends and is on another plane out of Charlotte.I'm taking a few months off before my next gig and Mary is going to take some time off from Duke this time so she can be there as well.She didn't get to stay long in the Bahamas last time, so I'm looking forward to having my first mate along for the duration.We'll have to get used to living together again, since I stay on the road and we're rarely together for more than 3-4 days at a time.We're going to meet up in Baltimore tonight and hopefully find a ride from there to Oxford, MD where Sweet. read more...


29/10/2015

Annabella - Cockrell Creek

This is the very visible light time landmark Cockrell Creek. Except for the faint odor of the fish factory in the distance, this is a secure and scenic area. Anchored here for two nights to escape the rain from what is left of Patricia. Still on schedule to join the Ghost walk in Portsmouth Friday night.IMG_0236. read more...


Annabella - Cockrell Creek
Annabella - Cockrell Creek
28/10/2015

Starblazer - 27/10/2015 - Vive la France

We left Mauritius last Thursday afternoon as planned.In the morning we had a multi-faith blessing ceremony followed by tea and nibbles.It was a lovely way to end our stay on Mauritius.Our start was something best forgotten!The plan was to deploy the cruising chute moments before the start and slide across the line in the rather feeble wind.The skipper opted for no mainsail as it would blanket the chute.I'd hoisted the sail, it was just a question of pulling the sock up to allow the sail to fill with wind but, with seconds to go, there was a windshift!I had to get the sail down quickly so John could pull the genoa out on the other side and we drifted over the start line, very nearly last.As expected, the wind shifted back quite soon so John rolled away the genoa and we pulled up the. read more...


27/10/2015

Widago - Almost to Las Palmas

WIDAGO and crew are continuing to creep towards Grand Canaria. The last two days we have been dodging intermittent rain storms (yeah! Fresh water wash down) and inconsistent winds (boooo! Sails in/out, up/down). After getting the parasailor launched we were really looking forward to some of the downwind trade wind sailing we've heard so much about, the 21kt of wind died back down to 10-12, just weak enough to collapse the chute. I tried pitching it to Ahab that it was a good training exercise, to which he replied, "I don't need any exercise."Under 80nm to our destination now. Motoring with the Genoa out tonight, under a full moon, and scattered clouds.Looking forward to a cold beer and someone else doing the dishes...-Ali. read more...


27/10/2015

Annabella - Solomons Morning

Anchored deep up in the cove, Wendy takes a minute to enjoy the tranquility. I don't think there's much at the Solomons, but I also think we didn't spend enough time to discover what wasn't much. Headed to Cockrell Creek today. 😀. read more...


Annabella - Solomons Morning
Annabella - Solomons Morning
Annabella - Solomons Morning
Annabella - Solomons Morning
27/10/2015

Why Not - Stocking up!

A sailor likes nothing better than a good bacon sandwich and a decent brew to start the day.  Here's hoping 1000 teabags will see them to the other side of the Atlantic.  Starting to get exciting!Richard & Tracey. read more...


Why Not - Stocking up!
Why Not - Stocking up!
26/10/2015

Rum Truffle - Rum Truffle - Log 3-26th October- Around the bottom south west of Spain- to be precise.

This is the third log while preparing for the ARC. Obviously I (a boat) cannot write, sail , mend its self, feed its self, etc. ..even though I am female , I just can’t multitask. Some think I can , like Maurice my cousin for example, he thought that I could keep myself steady , sail with my engines on , keep course and miss that half sunken rock , just North of Lesbos , I just could not do it (even when my name was not Rum Trhuffle) something had to go – it was not the game of scrabble , it was not the rock. It was the lifting 4m keel that swung backwards into action , spraying hydraulic oil all over the bilge.  With this in mind I decided to hand over this chore to the owner and skipper Paul. Not only because the Iridium go phone meant it had to be connected to an I phone and not. read more...


25/10/2015

Widago - Red Sky Tonight

...sailor's delight.Beautiful day of sailing today as we continue to make our way south towards Las Palmas. Although we have been dodging intermittent rain storms, the winds kept us on a smooth beam reach most of the day. The sea swells are getting more organized, but comfy as this cat rides the long rollers quite well. The boys only complained a little as they completed the bear minimum of boat school before diving back into a few episodes of the X-Files. Meatloaf, mashed taters & gravy, and a little veg sent me into a deep food coma prior to starting this midnight watch. Water and sky were crazy pink/purple at sunset.-Ali image1. read more...


Widago - Red Sky Tonight
Widago - Red Sky Tonight
Shiva - Shiva - Log day -28: Shiva has arrived in Gran Canaria & is ready for departure
Shiva - Shiva - Log day -28: Shiva has arrived in Gran Canaria & is ready for departure
25/10/2015

Shiva - Shiva - Log day -28: Shiva has arrived in Gran Canaria & is ready for departure

October 25, 2015 – Last month, on September 5, Shiva left Lagos after a few months of pleasant stay along the beautiful coast of Portugal. The journey headed southwards over the Atlantic Ocean towards Lanzarote in the Canary Islands. In other words, towards the start of ARC 2015! With half of the crew – Herman, Inge and Gerard – Shiva showed a super steady and nice performance.The first night was a peaceful night with an average speed of 8 kts. Inge and Gerard took the first night shift from 7PM to 10PM, then Herman until 3AM, and then the sunrise was viewed by Inge and Gerard again. The sun stayed high at the sky and it was a beautiful shiny day although a lowered wind speed of maximum 10 kts. With the mainsail code 1 Shiva sailed 6,8 kts speed and course over ground. 408 miles to go to. read more...


Shiva - Shiva - Log day -28: Shiva has arrived in Gran Canaria & is ready for departure
Shiva - Shiva - Log day -28: Shiva has arrived in Gran Canaria & is ready for departure
25/10/2015

Annabella - Annapolis in the rain

Even early on Sunday morning in the rain, Main Street in Annapolis is alive and well. Enjoying a day off.IMG_0111 IMG_0112 IMG_0113. read more...


Annabella - Annapolis in the rain
Annabella - Annapolis in the rain
Annabella - Annapolis in the rain
Annabella - Annapolis in the rain
Annabella - Annapolis in the rain
Annabella - Annapolis in the rain
25/10/2015

Firefly - En route to Lingga in the haze

Its Sunday 25th October and at 0630 Firefly left the anchorage at Belitung after a stoppage of over a week. We have fallen a little out of sync with the Sail 2 Indonesia Rally, missing 2 stops in Borneo to avoid the smoke pollution. We did attend both the 'Welcome Ceremony' and the interesting 'Bali Mask Dance' yesterday but had already done a couple of island tours so decided to leave a few days ahead of the pack so that we cover the 200+ miles to Penuba on Lingga at a slower pace.Our attempt to avoid the terrible air pollution present in this part of SE Asia did not work out as Belitung has been smokey and hazy most of the time too. The first two days we had blue skies but since then there has been a combination of general haze from forest fires in Borneo or Sumatra combined with smoke. read more...


24/10/2015

Widago - Heading to Las Palmas: Quiet Night

WIDAGO and crew departed Lagos this morning for Grand Canaria under gray and rainy skies. Winds have been mild, only 10-12kts on our beam, with calm seas. Even though we took a reef for the evening, the expected winds still have not arrived, but the skies have cleared and the mon shines brightly. With such a calm, no one has been seasick (yet) including yours truly, so a real hot meal of homemade chicken and rice soup was in the bowls for dinner. William was in charge of "roll'ms" (our after dinner treat while watching movies) and he charged hard out of the gate with our only stash of Golden Oreos. I'm pretty Ahab missed out on that particular round of HFCS and hydrogenated fat delicacy since he was on watch early.Great sailing today: huge pod of rather large dolphin and a curious little. read more...


Widago - Heading to Las Palmas: Quiet Night
Widago - Heading to Las Palmas: Quiet Night
23/10/2015

Luna Quest - Friday, 23rd October, 2015

Postion of Le Port La Reunion: 20.56S 55.17EDistance run from Mauritius: 143 logged milesThe highlights of Mauritius included a visit to a working sugar cane plantation (Labourdonnais) and a visit to a museum for the way sugar cane used to be harvested and processed into sugar, molasses and rum. Virtually all of the equipment used was made in England and Scotland and shipped by the old trading vessels to our former colonies (Mauritius is now independent). The Labourdonnais plantation included a beautifully restored chateau, all paid for by the family who still own and run it. The absence of inheritance tax has made this all possible. We also paid a visit to an unrestored colonial house, called ‘Maison Eureka’, to have Sunday lunch, walk the gardens and visit the waterfalls. This lovely. read more...


22/10/2015

Widago - Next Stop: Las Palmas

WIDAGO and her crew are anxiously awaiting for proper weather and final maintenance to be be completed before leaving Lagos, and heading south to Grand Canaria. Although this week has been all business, last week we played hooky for a Spanish road trip. Seville was the perfect pitstop on our way to Madrid. Obviously the oranges and aquarium were of great interest, but the award for Seville goes to their science museum, specifically the temporary exhibit on poop. The details of doo-doo were scientifically debunked, and the boys were happy to to pose for photos on the exhibit “thrones” and turds from outer space. Ahab and I managed to not only relax with a massage, but actually find a proper barber (of Seville) and receive our first real haircuts since January. On to Madrid, where eating,. read more...


21/10/2015

Starblazer - 21/10/2015 – Mauritius

Sorry, it’s nearly two weeks since my last log and a lot has happened since then!I celebrated my birthday at sea by eating.John cooked scrambled eggs on toast for breakfast, I made smoked salmon, cream cheese and salad wraps for lunch then John cooked steaks for dinner. Other than that, the day passed like any other day at sea, on watch periods, radio nets and regular entries in the ship’s logbook. The breeze stayed with us all day and we made good progress with a Tuesday arrival looking possible.Sadly it wasn’t to be and we arrived at first light on Wednesday.We had one further piece of damage which John noticed on Tuesday morning. The radar was dangling from the mast supported only by its wires.The seas were rather bouncy and John didn’t fancy climbing the mast so he managed to. read more...


20/10/2015

Firefly - Belitung was smoke free at first

Firefly has been anchored on the north west of Belitung for 5 days and will probably stay for a while longer. After Kumai our planned destination was Ketapang on the west of Borneo. The Sail 2 Indonesia Rally was due to stop there few a few days and would then move onto an Island called Karimata. However, the Ketapang stop was up another muddy river and we heard early reports via the SSB net that there was poor visibility due to air pollution.The decision was therefore made on Firefly to skip the next 2 rally stops and go straight onto Belitung, an island in the south of the South China Sea that was likely to have blue sky. From Kumai we therefore sailed overnight and the following afternoon anchored at one of a number of small islands off the north east of Belitung. Lots of jelly fish. read more...


20/10/2015

Misto - Misto at Deltaville

We are on the hard at Deltaville – great place for Cats to haul and to do work.  We are waxing, polishing, raising the waterline, bottom painting, doing some routine engine maintenance and hoping to Splash on Friday or early next week. The cold weather has been a bit of a shock – we don’t have heat while on the hard and connected to 15 amps!. read more...


Misto - Howard hard at work waxing and polishing Misto.
Misto - Howard hard at work waxing and polishing Misto.