facebookTwitterYou TubeNoonsiteOcean Crew LinkForum
can we help
+44(0)1983 296060
+1 757-788-8872
tell me moreJoin a rally

Menu

Daily Logs

Filter by..
Search


Hejira - Last night in Mindelo
Hejira - Last night in Mindelo
18/11/2015

Sail away - Sail Away Day 6

Motor sailing  just east of do south in ENE fluky winds.   Made a couple adjustments on the jury rigged bob stay.  The aft battery bank got pulled down to much so that attempting to charge them only tripped the charger breaker.  So I swapped those out with some fresh spares.  Because in the past when I ran the generator and the main engine at the same time the filter boss alarm would go off, and I’d have to change the racor filter.  My experience is once that starts, it constantly after that.  To avoid that we shut the main down every few hours to run the generator and get the freezer back down.  We usually let the freezer get up to about 10 degrees then pull it back down to minus 10.  Crew is a little tired, captain is too! . read more...


17/11/2015

Why Not - Why Not's Crew have arrived!

Why Not's crew has arrived!Pleased to say that Keith, Ray, Catrin and Paul have joined us and hope they will enjoy all the festivities leading up to their departure on Sunday.Only one member, Charlie left to join us on Friday.Not long now, our pontoon is very busy with last minute jobs to be done. - Richard DSC01300. read more...


Why Not - Why Not's Crew have arrived!
Why Not - Why Not's Crew have arrived!
17/11/2015

Raylah - Log Day 4-Land in sight

We are in good shape apart from instrument failures particularly the autohelm cutting in and out.We have been flying our lovely yellow and blue spinnaker downwind which gives us a very quiet and stable ride for cooking, reading and contemplation and a question that popped up was ‘Why do we go sailing?’ You take 4 blokes who hardly know each other, having nothing in common apart from sailing and you put them in a small room which like ‘Hotel California’ they can never leave.  Then you continually tilt the room in all directions to put them off there balance and occasionally wet them with sea water to make them cold and sticky . They can of course wash this off with more sea water making them even more sticky. You then address their mental state by sleep deprivation. This a. read more...


17/11/2015

Hejira - 4th in class !!!!

Tuesday 17th November 2015After early morning rain, the day continued to be overcast and clammy. Our mission for the day was to obtain the necessary pipework and fittings to effect a re-working of the watermaker connections. After some time spent in trawling the various shops trying to make ourselves understood (our Portuguese and Creole is not up to much) we found a chap in a very poorly stocked chandlers who went away with a list and drawings promising to deliver all to Hejira at midday. We gave him the benefit of the doubt not really expecting him to ‘come up trumps’ and waited aboard at the allotted time. With him not appearing (what a surprise) we adjourned to the floating bar where we could observe the comings and goings and all but the essential pipe, arrived in dribs and drabs.. read more...


17/11/2015

Sail away - Sail Away Day 5

I forgot to mention Chucks birthday yesterday! We had had birthday cupcakes!  So we continued through the night In generally an easterly direction under main, staysail and genoa.  At 6 am my sister was sleeping in the bow V-birth when she was awoken by a horrible noise.  She said it sounded like we were dropping the anchor or something.  She came running, something is going on up on the bow.  Turning on the spreader light reveal the bow sprit going up and down.  I wasn’t sure that the pressure from the roller furled itself wasn’t going to finish the job, but we had to try.  Fortunately the genoa came in and rolled up.  We were still moving through the water at a good clip so next we rolled up the staysail and lowered the main.  Now we. read more...


16/11/2015

Blue Summit - Halfway to the BVI

It was just two weeks and 900 miles ago that we departed from Deltaville for our circumnavigation.Currently, we are on the sixth day (and over halfway) on the leg from Norfolk to Tortola in the BVI.We headed out of the Chesapeake Bay 5 days ago, past Cape Hatteras and southeastward toward a spot south of Bermuda on the 65W line of longitude.This is known as the I-65 route to the Caribbean and although an open ocean route, and the quickest way to get there, there is less upwind sailing than on the infamous Thorny Path through the Bahamas and Greater Antilles.We have now turned south and are sailing along on a bumpy beam reach at 9 knots with about 20 knots of wind. "New" is the operative word on this passage for us. Our ten year boat needed "some" refits and updates after last winter's. read more...


16/11/2015

Barbara Jean - Day 3- November 13, 2015-Another choppy ride

Day 3-Friday  During morning roll call there wasn't a readout of the weather however, WRI said we should all head for 300 nm south of Bermuda. Annabella once again relays weather information to us.It is nice to have someone looking out for you. No boats in sight, neither visually nor on radar.Bob mentioned on morning roll call that several boats reported equipment failure. These choppy seas are hard on the boats and people.It's almost safer in the cockpit than it is below deck.We are doing well despite the constant rolling back and forth of the boat. This is when you find out how well you have secured things below.We started out with a golden rule of no salt down below except for in the salt room (aft berth/storage area) but, things are so bouncy that it doesn't make sense to take. read more...


Hejira - Sleeping dogs
Hejira - Sleeping dogs
16/11/2015

Barbara Jean - Day 4-Saturday Still no boats in sight

We continue to sail SE towards the 300 nm position that was suggested.Winds are directly behind us with the swells still mixed.We have a hammock netting that has fruit, potatoes, bread and buns on top that is hanging from the portside ceiling hand hold.It has been adjusted and secured several times as it is one of the traps or potential hazards down below.The seas have settled a little so I will attempt to make breakfast….scrambled eggs, sausage and cheese wrapped in a tortilla. It was delicious!!!!Morning role call went well except several rally boats did not participate.I like to write down the positions of each boat to get an idea of where everyone is at.I later learn that not everyone can hear the roll call, depending on their location. I tried hailing Annabella on the VHF earlier. read more...


16/11/2015

Barbara Jean - Left Portsmouth?headed out into Atlantic-11-14-15

We start our shifts….4 hours on and 4 hours off. We tend to be a little more lax during the day.Day1--We left the dock around 9:25am on Wednesday, November 11th. The ride started out with choppy seas and continued throughout the today. After leaving the southern portion of the Chesapeake, we went south and followed the coastline down to Cape Hatteras.We were given a suggested latitude and longitude to enter the Gulf Stream. After we turned East to head out into the Atlantic, Bob grabbed the whisker pole to be able to sail wing-on-wing.This setup lasted about an hour and then the pole bent……it has now been taken out of the equipment list. Winds were out of the North at 15/16 knots. The seas have been choppy with swells at 5-9 feet.Dinner was coney islands and chips.Day 2-7:30 amI just. read more...


16/11/2015

Free Spirit - Sunday, 15 November 2015 Entertainment at sea

Last night's motoring didn't last long.By 2200 the wind filled in and we were able to partially unfurl the genoa to go wing on wing.The motor's off and we are sailing again.We are making good time today, having clocked a 9.4kt speed surfing down the back of a wave.  We started out the morning with a hearty breakfast of apple spiced pancakes, then broke out the toys and other sources of amusement.Steve is working the sextant again.I stand corrected… yesterday he came within 0.5 miles of our electronic position fix, definitely a "you da man" moment.Alex, our IT expert, helped me set up the solar powered charging device my son gave me for my birthday.Our latest competition is to see who can coax out the greatest amount of speed and stay the closest on course. I can hear my mother now,. read more...


16/11/2015

Annabella - Fw: Day 5 at sea

The crew of Annabella watches the sun rise somewhere in the Triangle while H. L.watches over the scene and Wendy gives direction.What was the direction? "go East old men, go East" And so we do.Au demain. read more...


16/11/2015

Hejira - Sleeping dogs

Monday 16th November 2015After a short night’s sleep, I have to confess to waking to a slight headache, probably due to a lack of sleep……………Exploring Mindelo on a Sunday morning probably doesn’t show it at its best being rather quiet apart from the children begging. The colonial architecture would probably once have been impressive but now everything has a faded, run down feel to it. The laid back attitude is probably best crystallised in this picture of a sleeping dog. Seemingly feral dogs appear to be everywhere and this did elicit a comment from Stephen that, although he has medication for most situations, he doesn’t have anything for rabies!The Mindelo marina infrastructure doesn’t seem to run to sufficient voltage to run the air conditioning so we are almost grateful that the skies. read more...


Vitamina - dolphins
Vitamina - dolphins
Vitamina - flying fish
Vitamina - flying fish
15/11/2015

Vitamina - vitamina diary2

day4 in three days more we hope we will be at Mindelo!! This morning we could open the ARC files with the weather forecast and the yacht positions…..we are one of the last yachts….but happy!….we could solve the problem with the water maker thanks to a radio connection with Rafael del Castillo our contact in Las Palmas. The weather is quiet and we hope keep in that way I miss my sister….a lot…. This morning we could talk to Skirion in Las Palmas…they are fine…   day5 we started the day with the radio connection….and everything is OK …Moonshine, the vessel with problems is ok, so great!..and suddenly I lisened to Ignacio yelling a fish a fish!! our first Dorado…beautiful fish with spectacular colors..and I changed the menu for the day…we will eat fish on grilled instead of rice with. read more...


15/11/2015

Vitamina - vitamin diary

 Day 1 After the first 30 milles we have to talk to the organization because we had to stop at Pasito Blanco to do a reparation in the water maker….after two hours we continued sailing south stern but all the fleet was so far from us. That night was quiet and with good north eastern winds….. The nightwatched  started…2 hours and a half each of one….. Some hours after we passed next to Skirion…the other spanish yacht…and they told us that their night was very uncomfortable day2 we continue using to be on board…. watches, the food….we have  spaghetti for lunch!…the waves have been higher than before…but from the back wihch is great! we have connected with the rest of the fleet without problems…but bad news today…Belafonte has had to return to Las Palmas because some. read more...


15/11/2015

Free Spirit - Saturday, 14 November 2015 What a difference a day makes!

We had a very much welcomed beautiful sail last night with west winds 18-20 kts and gentle waves.We scooted right along, clocking 8.9 kts SOG at one point, much to our delight.We all slept soundly off duty, with a contest to see who sawed the most logs.I think the skipper won that hands down.I kept thinking I was hearing a furling line whining through the block until I traced the source.Alex is earning the moniker "squall boy", as he seems to be catching all the squalls on his watch while the rest of us stay nice and dry.Steve and Alex are working on the rock star challenge, breaking out the sextant again.Today's efforts resulted in a position within 1.6 miles of our electronic fix.Wahoo!The wind turned fickle and we had to turn on the motor again.All in all we are pleased with our. read more...


15/11/2015

Free Spirit - Friday, 13 Nov 2015 Rodeo Time

Last night we got a taste of how spoiled we've become this passage.The winds and the waves kicked up and we spent the night rocking and a rolling.Free Spirit impersonated a rodeo bronc, bucking, rolling, dropping her shoulder and doing her best to unseat us.The difference is that she never tired and the ride lasted 8 hours rather than seconds.  The watch person held onto the lines tightly to stay in the saddle while those below found sleep impossible as they were thrown side to side, and up in the air in their bunks.Even the new lee cloth system was no match, working well to prevent injury but not enough to let you sleep.When morning came we were all still here, though rather bleary eyed.The sun came out, the wind and waves settled down, and a huge pod of dolphins came alongside the. read more...


15/11/2015

Free Spirit - Thursday, 12 Nov 2015 Settling in

The wind shifted north and died during the night, so we ended up motor sailing through the night.We're settling in to our 2 hour watch system, grabbing shut eye at every opportunity while we work on acquiring our sea legs.We have been fighting a cold water eddy all day according to our temperature readings, with 2 kts of current against us to slow our progress.Steve got out his sextant and is sharpening his celestial navigation skills… a lost art these days.He took the readings, did the calculations, and came within 8 miles of our electronic fix.The challenge is on to see how much he can narrow the gap… the rock star challenge!Andrea'. read more...


15/11/2015

Free Spirit - Wednesday, 11 Nov 2015 Out to the Gulf Stream

We departed Hampton Yacht Club in Hampton, VA at 1500 EST.The Caribbean 1500 fleet is scheduled to leave tomorrow.We're heading out now to try to take advantage of the wind, coming at us from the west compliments of Tropical Storm Kate.The skies were overcast on Tuesday with intermittent rain showers, so we had to take advantage of breaks in the rain to finish loading the end of the last minute items.When all was in order and the crew set, we got underway. Winds were west at 5-10 kts when we started motor sailing, but quickly picked up.By 1900 AST (Atlantic Standard Time) we had 20-28 kts of west wind and could douse the engine and sail comfortably with a 3rd reef in the main and full jib.It was easy sailing and a great way to start the adventure.The dreaded waves due to all the. read more...


15/11/2015

Bamarandi - Sunday 15th November - Mindelo Welcomes ARC+ visitors

We arrived here on Friday 13th with very little wind helping us over the line only for it to build significantly as soon as we entered the marina. It has blown hard since but has now dropped overnight. We have been doing various jobs on the boat including going up the mast to re-rig the gennaker line although we will not use it as the line supplied with the boat is clearly not right for the job. A sister boat is here on the ARC+, one of the earlier Victoria 67 hulls and they have had exactly the same problem. After 2 breakages when first using their gennaker they replaced the line and have seen no more problems since. We cannot source the right sort of line here so will have to continue the passage to St Lucia without being able to use the gennaker which will be a significant handicap. read more...


15/11/2015

Sail away - Sail Away Day 4

Continued through the night heading SE with a double reefed main.  8 Am wind dropping into the high teens, shock out the reefs in the main and set the Genoa and staysail.  Looking at the wind predictions we decided we should head further east so we flipped to a broad reach on the port tack.  We saw another sailboat running do south, turned out to be Island Tales and we connected on the VHF.  They said they were crossing the Gulf Stream near Isbjorn when Isbjorn blew out a sail.  They got everything on film.  I think I know who gets the Gill Jacket!  Anyway running across Island tales a Tayana 48 means where not doing that badly.  Island Tales was heading straight downwind, something Sail Away doesn’t do well.  But I felt that was the. read more...


15/11/2015

Exody - Days 303-309: Big 3, Celtic Connections and Poo Spitting !

Our final run in to Richard's Bay was 'downhill' across the Agulhas current- up to 2 knots with us and up to 30 degrees sideways course offset.Maintaining sail until close in to the busy industrial port, we motored between the breakwaters just ahead of a vast cargo ship on our tail. We were welcomed by World ARC/Yacht Club dinghy to negotiate the unmarked channel in and later enjoyed the presented bottle of South African bubbly. Just 48 hours after this arrival on the afternoon of Monday 9th, we had seen at close quarters three of the 'big 5'- elephant, rhino and buffalo.Plus giraffe, wildebeest, warthog, zebra, hippo, crocodile and several members of the surprisingly diverse antelope family (Kudu, Impala etc-fast food for lions!).Our one hour journey north firstly to the. read more...


15/11/2015

Misto - Rockin' n 'rolliing

On day 4 we now have great wind.The sea state is pushing us a little further South before we get to 65W than we had intended but we are still on target for Tortola. We have visual company here - Vanishing Point - a Salty Dog Rally boat that left the same day as the Carrib 1500. We tried fishing - no luck yet!It's really beautiful out here at night with the skies full of shooting stars. Our crew are doing great - we have had so much practice reefing and un-reefing they can almost do it blindfolded!Howard and RosS/V Misto. read more...


15/11/2015

Lea - Log Day 7 – Saturday/Closing up on the finish line, with a hint of tomatoes

  21:50GMT-1: With 5 nautical miles left to the finish line, CapeVerde feels so close we can almost touch it! We’re all in the cockpit, ready toset our feet on solid ground and are of course fighting over the honor of whosaw land first. Earlier today we had a good go on deck with a bucket and a fewloads of sea water. That Sahara desert has really made itself comfortable. Thesand is still all over the place, on ropes and wires and in between all kinds ofsurfaces we didn’t even know existed. Let’s just say there’s no doubt what anglethe wind came from. WithHejira right behind us, Sara Ulrikke beating us with a few miles, the day hasbeen a good one with some added excitement of closing up on Cape Verde. Or whatI thought was a good day, until I crossed paths with an unfriendly can of. read more...


15/11/2015

Free Spirit - Tuesday, 10 November 2015 And we're off?

Boat's loaded, crew prepped.Will include team photo when we arrive at the other end.Andrea. read more...


15/11/2015

Free Spirit - Sunday, 8 November 2015 Hurry up and wait

We've been working like dogs all week, taking care of last minute details.I've cooked, frozen and vacu-sealed 10 days worth of meals.We have 4 different kinds of home baked cookies, accommodating crew special requests.Mike has been troubleshooting the single side band radio all week, as it has been on the fritz.Nothing like a little last minute angst, as no radio is a show stopper in our book.  Finally, after replacing the grounding device, tuner and running new cable, we are back in business today.He should sleep like a baby tonight!We had hoped to get an early start and leave yesterday, but Mother Nature has other ideas.We are now delayed until Tuesday or Wednesday due to weather developments in the Caribbean.Andrea. read more...


15/11/2015

Free Spirit - Sunday, 1 November 2015 One step closer

Slowly but surely we are making progress.Not sure if I'm in denial or if everything is as squared away as it seems.Mike claims all the major boat projects are done and he's down to the little stuff.We've checked in with the Caribbean 1500 group and already passed our safety inspection.  For good measure we also completed the US Coast Guard safety inspection and are sporting that decal as well.The house is beginning to look like a house again as the boat stuff is heading back down and being stowed away on the boat.There will be 4 of us for the passage.Steve Runals (aka Rock Star) will be going with us again.Alex Fleming rounds out the crew as our fourth, making his first blue water passage.  Everyone is ready and eager to go.Andrea. read more...


15/11/2015

Free Spirit - Saturday, 24 October2015 It's that time again!

It almost feels like Christmas around here as packages arrive daily and we're practically on a first name basis with the UPS delivery man who brings us an assortment of spare parts and various sundries to ensure we have anything we could possibly need to tide us over for our passage and winter in the Caribbean.After 14 months on the hard in Annapolis undergoing a major refit project, Free Spirit is back home and getting ready for the Caribbean 1500 once again.  Mike is working feverishly on the boat, taking care of odds and ends like getting our reefing system functional again and enlisting my help for a trip up the mast to feed the jib halyard so we could put the jib back on.I'm focused on getting the house and other commitments in order.Fall planting and yard work is done.The. read more...


15/11/2015

Hejira - Mindelo at last

16 53.214N 024 59.487WSunday 15th November 2015Quite an interesting arrival in the Cape Verde Islands with none of the charted navigational lights working and the island inside which we had to finish at 11.31pm showing as nothing more than a menacing  presence. The stowing of the sails and preparation for berthing was surprisingly slick given that the wind chose to pipe up just as we crossed the line. We took our berth alongside Lea who preceded us in and we managed to down a few beers in the floating bar before they closed. It seems that few yachts managed the passage without using the engine so it will be interesting to see how the organisers arrange the positions after the deadline for finishing at 5pm tonight.We all slept very well, assisted no doubt by our celebratory. read more...


Aliena - Tripulación del ALIENA en Lanzarote
Aliena - Tripulación del ALIENA en Lanzarote
15/11/2015

Aliena - Listos para la partida

Preparando las maletas en Valencia, después de una corta visita a la familia y amigos para la despedida antes de cruzar el Atlántico, la tripulación del ALIENA está preparada para iniciar la travesía del Atlántico.Mañana empezaremos en Las Palmas la última semana antes de la largada el domingo 22. Muchos seminarios organizados para World Crusing Club, avituallamiento de frutas y vegetales frescos y alguna botella de vino, por supuesto, para mantener alta la moral de la bodega del barco, factor de máxima importancia. Porque en el ALIENA se come y se bebe muy bien!!! Vamos a proponer a la organización montar algún tipo de competición en este sentido.Bueno, como obertura del diario ya está bien, lo importante ahora será mantener la línea abierta, con más información. Por cierto, si alguna. read more...


14/11/2015

Isbjörn - Spinnaker Groove... NIGHT-TIME BLAZING

"Popped the chute" at 1400hrs and have been blazin' ever since! All hands on deck for the set in 15 knots of breeze ... managed a full hoist to the top of the rig, bashed knuckles and all.It's now post-sunset and were broad reaching under spinnaker in amazing conditions that rarely present themselves offshore for a such a lengthy period. For the past six hours the boat speed has not dropped below 7.5 knots, induced by 10-13kts of apparent windspeed! Everyone is taking a stretch at the helm and learning the nuances of spinnaker-sailing a thorough-bred offshore machine. I managed one stretch of helming that took Isbjorn to a sustained groove of 8.5 knots lasting several minutes.The steaming light is illuminating the spinnaker by which we helm exclusively to the curl and tension of her. read more...


14/11/2015

Sweet Caroline - Getting in the rhythm

Today has been a slower day -- winds somewhat behind us, but we are just trying to stay on course and get to a waypoint at 65 W longitude, from which we can turn South. The last two days have been great sailing - 6-8 knots in spite of the 10-12 foot swells. Little difficult to sleep last night being on a starboard tack, but we try to at least take naps in the day. It's been a trip of many first ... so far, no one has been seasick. We have encouraged each other to stay hydrated and rest whenever we can.I am so grateful for finding the right meds that work for me. I even cooked dinner last night -- pork roast barbecue, corn on the cob, and slaw. Another first is that we caught a fish -- but it was a skipjack tuna (which are really only good for bait). We don't have the freezer space just. read more...


14/11/2015

Timshel - Log Day 5 More trials and tribulations

Days run 300 - 1300 125.8nm.Friday 13 not over, next the cruising chute fell in the water - the top of the snuffer that attaches to the halyard had come apart.It makes a good sea anchor, but slowly managed to haul it aboard and stuff it down the forehatch.The snuffer gave even more drag, Steve managed to pull that in and managed to unhook it from the self steering rudder with a boathook. So more jobs and will have to go up the mast to recover the halyard.Gybed and set the yankee poled out instead.It was a dark night, no stars, no moon, no other boats, but lots of phosphorescence.The line for the towed Aquair generator was covered in sparkly bits as I pulled it in.A couple of flying fish on deck but not enough for breakfast.Some confusion for the morning SSB net as no Net controller had. read more...


14/11/2015

Blue Summit - Blue Summit: Days 1-3

A three day delay? No problem for the fabulous Caribbean 1500 Rally staff who organized impromptu seminars, tours and a wonderful trivia night while the fleet of 30+ boats waited for tropical storm Kate to clear out.And when she did finally exit stage right, off the fleet went under a star splashed sky (with Jupiter, Mars and Venus slung low in the sky), propelled by a beautiful north wind bound for Tortola in the British Virgin Islands.Sailors don't always get to choose the wind and seas they have, but it doesn't stop this Goldilocks from wanting it "just right."We have seen too much wind (30-35, gusting to 40 knots one night), too little wind, (light to nothing the first night out resulted in burning fossil fuel for a few hours when our speed dipped below 3 knots, yuck) and perfect. read more...


14/11/2015

Lucky Star - 165 mille dans la journée

Bonjour tout le monde!Ici Lucky star, enfin une journée avec un peu de vent. On a pris la bonne option, direction madèrepour ensuite descendre sur les Canaries. Nous sommes à près de 7 nœuds de moyenne depuis 36 heures,nous espérons arriver lundi à Gran Canaria.Soleil, dauphins, vent de travers et notre deuxième bouteille !!!Pour voir notre position à 12h22 ce samedi 14/11/2015, cliquez sur lelien suivant :amour.https://www.google.fr/maps/place/32°04'52.08"N+14°07'17.40"WTeam Lucky Star. read more...


14/11/2015

Sail away - Sail Away "Day Three"

Running east under a double reefed main.  I was in bed and thought I saw my sister at the foot of my bed saying we need you up top.  I got up and went to the cockpit, Debbie and Anne were sitting talking.  I said what’s wrong?  Nothing Debbie said.  Didn’t you come tell me you needed me up top?  No!  Just then without warning the wind shifted suddenly from SW to NW.  The main back winded and the boat spun around into sea.  We went instantly from relative motion to incredible motion.  We got things straightened out on a new SE’ly course.  While the wind direction changed the wind force remained about the same.  We ran this way all day until about 17:00 When the wind dropped down into the high teen’s.  Decided to keep the. read more...


14/11/2015

Misto - Misto at Sea

We are aiming for a waypoint 300nm south of Bermuda and its like a sleigh ride! The first night at sea we had to motor but the second was challenging with high winds and very confused seas.Our crew are great and we have made good progress.We tried fishing today - no luck yet!The atmospherics tonight were unusual as I could hear Altair and Karina on the VHF - but they were nowhere in sight and by my reckoning at least 60 miles away.-----At 11/13/2015 9:01 PM (utc) our position was 32°09.18'N 071°04.53'W. read more...


14/11/2015

Lea - Log Day 6 – Friday/Banana Pancakes

- Starting the day not thinking at all about the factthat it’s Friday the 13th, we decided to test our water maker, andhad to “waste” some water to make room for test-water. So I took one for theteam; a shower. And then a  4 hournap. And then my sister woke me up to the smell of coffee and banana pancakesfor lunch. You see, nature kind of turned on us and decided to turn about halfof all our bananas into that brown, ripe look - all at the same time. So then wehad no choice but to eat them all. So Chef Erin whipped up some banana pancakes.Eat that, nature. Intheory we may not have had the best luck fishing yet, but how did we know weweren’t even going to have to use a pole. Earlier today, during a stroll ondeck, I noticed this tiny, slimy creature with wings, just kind of smooched. read more...


14/11/2015

Isbjörn - Autopilot Anarchy ... Crew Boycott

Not once have we used the freaking autopilot ... NOT ONCE! The eager crew has hand-steered for the last 480 miles with zero consideration for the autopilot; instead, they "call it."Walter gets ready one hour prior to his 2000hr shift, preps himself in numerous ways including a technical read of Marche's Seamanship text, then boisterously proclaims: "I call the helm for my 8pm shift (period). No one argues, instead they each vie for every opportunity to get a grip on the wheel and drive the bus.Senator Tom Harken is no exception ... although, to me he's much more than a legislator, Tom is a former Navy jet-pilot. He flew F4s and F8s from an aircraft carrier. Despite Tom's self-inflicted wound to his index finger from his own knife a couple days ago he got while cutting away our. read more...


14/11/2015

Hejira - Blighus Maximus

17 58.547N 024 00.431WSaturday 14th November 2015Light winds have persisted and this has not favoured heavy old Hejira. We did very well against the lightweight production yachts in the big winds and our sail plan is well suited to the point of sail but they are now ‘reeling us in’ so from a heady 6th in class, we expect to tumble down the rankings. There is consolation from the fact that we have not run our engine and this will be a factor in calculating final positions as we suspect that others have been liberally burning diesel. We were miles in front of Lea, a Norwegian Bavaria 44 crewed by ladies but over the course of yesterday, she closed in on us and as I write this, she is alongside (well, 4 miles away) and the only other yacht showing either visually or on AIS – this is. read more...


14/11/2015

Starblazer - 14/11/2015 - Beating the clock

The narrow band of favourable current continued as far as the Agulhas Current which then swept us south towards our destination.We had some lovely, fast sailing maintaining an average of over 7.5 knots with Exody within 10 - 15 miles of us for the last two days.The 2 knots of favourable current was a great help as the wind slowly dropped, the 'knock on' effect of reducing winds was calmer seas so we could still sail sail relatively fast.Big seas tend to throw the boat around and hamper progress, in 30 knots of wind we struggled to make 5 knots through the water on Wednesday when we also had a 1.5 - 2 knots current against us!Approaching the Agulhas Current, up to 50 miles wide, we set a course for Cape St Lucia, north of our final destination.The current can flow at 5 knots though we. read more...


13/11/2015

Isbjörn - The real deal!

There is nothing like yesterday's sail repair to authenticate this experience as a real introduction to ocean sailing.It was blowing 25+ knots but at least the sun had not yet set when Papa Bear (as at least one cruising woman calls him) noticed the middle batten was shaking out of the mainsail. It is a full batten so it was not imminently at risk, but the process of lowering the sail could shake it out to be lost forever.Our captain, Paul Exner, decided I should drop down to a broad reach while everyone else coaxed the sail down gently. Paul chose not to rig a preventer because, to the best of my understanding, he did not want to risk not being able to get the boom in quickly if the batten started to go and we did not have enough hands to have someone on the preventer.I was well aware. read more...


13/11/2015

Aurora - 13 november

Geachte lezer,Even voorstellen, zeiljacht Aurora met als thuishaven Den Helder, is in de ARC+ op pad naar Sao Vincente, een van de eilanden welke deel uit maakt van de Cape Verden. Nog een 100 mijl te gaan en dan zijn we bij de finish in Mindalo. We zitten aan boord, met een Schipper, ik dus, en twee Co schippers genaamd Co3 en Co4. Voor de goede orde er is ook een Co en Co2. Maar nu even niet. Uiteindelijk zijn we via de Cape Verden op pad naar de Carieben, dat kunnen we uitstekend op eigen kieltje maar in een groep zoiets doen is meestal leuker. Nu zijn er in totaal maar drie Nederlandse schepen dus moeten we de eer een beetje hoog houden. Ik kan u zeggen dat gaat ons aardig af. Niet alleen op zeiltechnisch gebied, daarover later maar meer op andere zaken. We hebben drie totaal. read more...


13/11/2015

Widago - CV Leg (6): Crawling Towards Mindelo

After our previous day of bountiful fishing followed by extreme vacuum sealing, today was slow, steady, and quiet as we drag ourselves the last few miles into Cape Verde. I sit here typing, yet fantasizing about being in our old Grady White - we could fire up those twin 250 Yamis, and be tied up next to the floating bar before midnight. But, since this is a sailing boat, and we are technically supposed to be sailing, I guess the floating bar will have to wait until tomorrow, because the whopping 3.8 kts isn't getting us in before last call. Perhaps the most important thing is that we get in before the laundry guy leaves the marina at 9am - a girl's gotta have her priorities, and right now clean sheet night, preceded by showering with clean, non-funky towels is at the top of my. read more...


13/11/2015

Timshel - Log Day 5 Oh Dear! Friday 13

Days run 1300 - 1300: only 101 miles. And it was all going so well, but today all we did was add to Bob (the Builder)s list of things to fix in Cape Verde.Very peaceful and sedate progress overnight, didn't see any other boats.Tried looking at the generator, nothing obvious we can fix, the engine runs OK but does not give any charge so can't use the watermaker either.Also found one of the loops at tack of mainsail has chafed through, luckily there were two but will need to sew that somehow, flexible gas hose by cooker is also chafing lucky we noticed and tackline on cruising chute caught on anchor pin and bent it - again, that thing is fated. The Hydrovane self steering bolts have loosened and will need tightening at the pitstop.We thought we were making good progress, but unfortunately. read more...