Saturday, August 2, 2014

August 2 Position Report

8/2/14 Wandering Dolphin POS

1100 Anchorage time/ 1900 GMT
N46 21.32  W146 02.29
COG 041T
SOG 3kt
DMG 96 nautical miles
DTG 934 nautical miles

Wind: SE 5-8
Pressure: 29.75
Temp: 72F
Sky: overcast
Seas: 3-4 ft swells
Sails: main, jib and stays'l set

Good Morning,

Tonight we will be up against gale force winds coming from the NE, which is, of course, our destination heading.  We don't want to turn and run and lose ground so we will be setting a sea anchor and heaving-to with our double reefed main and stays'l.  It is a fast moving system so we should only be sitting here for 24 hours or so.

We have spent the past few days doing what we now refer to as "drift sailing."  This is what we call it when the wind is light enough that the boat moves through the water just enough that the auto pilot can keep her on course but it feels like you are drifting down a River in the current because there is no wave action.  When the wind dies altogether you cannot even heave-to because it actually takes wind to hold the jib backed and the helm hard over so what we do in that case in just put the wheel hard over and sheet the main all the way in and the boat just finds a direction which it wants to point and the current, if there is any, carries you along where it wants to.  If you can be patient and look on the bright side these days can be a beautiful addition to your passage but if you are eager to make landfall or concerned about provisions or anything it can become nerve wracking.  We spent so much time drift sailing on our passage from Costa Rica to Hawaii that we really don't let it get too stressed over it now.  These few days have been a lot of fun and overall pretty relaxing but the wind has now filled in and we are once again moving along at a respectable pace.

Yesterday we had almost a full day of blue sky and sunshine.  It was still cold enough that we were all wearing our sweatshirts but just the feel of the sun through the dodger windows was great.  The fine weather gave me an opportunity to have a really good look at all of the rigging and check the boat out for problem spots.  I didn't find any so we should be good to go for the final run into the coast. EmilyAnne and I had to do a midnight gybe and I was again super impressed with my teenage daughter.  She is such a great hand.  She jumps up in the middle of the night from a sound sleep and she and I just do the deck work without even having to talk about what needs to be done.  Kaleb has really stepped up this passage too.  He has asked if he can help with watches and stuff even when he doesn't need to.  We were talking about what he wants to do when he grows up and he said, " I'm not sure but I know I want to ride a bicycle across the United States."  He must have liked my stories of my rides from Wyoming to Canada and on to Alaska when I was in High School.

Becky made an cherry/pineapple pie for dessert yesterday!   Mmmmmmmmmmm nothing tastes that good after so many days at sea... Well maybe a cheeseburger.....  We still have quite a lot of food so it looks like our provisioning lady did an awesome job once again.

Becky also heard her first offshore night voices at sea.  She has heard us (Em, Ben, and I) tell stories about hearing people talking out at sea or in my case kids laughing and I'm pretty sure she just thought we were overly imaginative and that it could be explained away by the wind in the rigging... Until the other night when she plainly heard someone calling for help from off the boat!  She quickly turned off her music, jumped up to the edge and heard it again and just as she was about to go down and get me she heard laughter from the same spot since she was pretty sure that anyone who was in danger in a life raft wouldn't be giggling about it she pulled the covers over her head and turned up the music.  I'm not sure what your take on this might be but it is pretty well a universal thing for people who spend a long time at sea to hear voices and these stories go back in time as far as written records of voyaging go back... My personal choice is to believe in Mermaids out there getting a real kick out of messing with us.

"There's only one on watch!  It's a woman too!"
"You think we are close enough that she can hear us yet?"
" Just try."
"OK, what shall I say?"
"Yell for help, that always gets their attention quickest."

"Help!!  Help!!"

"She turned off her music and she's looking over the edge!"
"Help!" Followed by uncontrollable giggling........

I like that a lot better than the ghost story ideas others have told me in the past so I'm sticking to mermaids.  Wish I could see one though...

Messages: answers:

Aline: animals we have seen since we left St Thomas-
10 Humpback whales
15 spotted dolphins
6 or 7 white sided dolphins
A pod too large to count of Spinner dolphins
4 common dolphins
3 Mahi Mahi (we ate two of them)
A whole school of Tuna
Countless flying fish (Tofer ate one of them)
1 marlin or some type of sail fish
4 green sea turtles
1 loggerhead sea turtle
Countless jellyfish and Portuguese Man-O-Wars
Countless little sea birds (we don't know what they are yet)
4 Albatross
10 or 12 sea gulls offshore
1 huge White Sea monster
1 squid
An undetermined number of mermaids

Also Aline, #1 We found a remedy for sea sickness, go to the pharmacy in Canada and get Stugeron Forte.  It's a once a day pill taken with a meal for the first three or four days of your passage.  I can give you more details if you wish.  #2 Homeschooling our own child is tricky at best.  However, this lifestyle allows you to be flexible and creative.  #3 One of our favorite quotes, "There are sailors that shit when they can see land and those that shit when they don't."

Jim V:  What we are reading: Emily is now reading a couple of Dean Koontz novels, Benny is reading "The Beyonders" by Brandon Mull, Kaleb is reading a different series of books called "Seekers" by the author of "Warriors" and I am reading the latest Evan Currie Science Fiction novel in the "Odyssey One" series. We are babying the sails, so at this point no seam repair needed.
We learned to sail by chartering in the Pacific Northwest and taking the American Sailing Association courses, but we really learned by moving aboard and going to the Bahamas.

John on Dulcinea in Tacoma - Thanks for the warm weather update!

Cave: Shave Ice Still sounds AWESOME!  Thanks for the weather.

Alex S/V Pesto: We enjoyed your last nights notes, we even laughed out loud when we read you ordered a new Main.  We figured you don't want to sew while underway.
Len S/V Terratima: We should be there the end of next week so you should be able to pick us up on AIS in the Straits of Juan de Fuca.

Batten Down the Hatches,
Captain Tofer, Rebecca, EmilyAnne, Kanyon, Kaleb, and Benny

No comments:

Post a Comment