Force 8 with Frideric Handel (Video)

9 Dec

December, 2018

Day 61

Noon Position: 49 47S 48 33W

Course(t)/Speed(kts): ENE 7

Wind(t/tws): NWxW 20

Sea(t/ft): NW 3 and 8 (granddaddy swell under local small sea)

Sky: Cumulus and alto cumulus

10ths Cloud Cover: 9

Bar(mb): 1008+, steady

Cabin Temp(f): 59

Water Temp(f): 45

Relative Humidity(%): 70

Sail: Working genoa and main; one reef in main. A reach tending toward broad reach.

Noon-to-Noon Miles Made Good (nm): 152

Miles since departure: 8262

Avg. Miles/Day: 135

Steady winds continue from the NW, and on them we make steady progress. But that is about to change. Tonight wind will back a ...

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Navico Halo24 & Raymarine Quantum2 radars, Gizmo goes full Doppler

8 Dec

Credit to the schooner Mary Day for lighting up Camden Harbor nights with her Christmas tree main-topmast, but yesterday Gizmo became the rare vessel equipped with four different solid-state Doppler pulse compression radars. Given the Simrad Halo24 announced in October, and the Raymarine Quantum 2 introduced last February, all four major marine navigation electronics brands now offer this valuable technology. And while the timing isn’t ideal, I’m excited about adding the two new radomes to the Garmin Fantom 24 and Furuno DRS4D-NXT Doppler models already being tested.

Navico (Simrad, B&G, and Lowrance) Halo24 radar underside

Navico (Simrad, B&G, and Lowrance) Halo24 radar underside

Actually, near-freezing air temperatures do ...

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Special Podcast Post & Other updates

7 Dec

Hi Virtual Voyagers!

Yes, this post is not one of our usual posts. But we thought many of you would enjoy hearing from Randall for a change. The night before Randall set sail he made time to chat with one of our friends/advisors Matt Rutherford. Matt holds the honor of being the first person to non-stop through the North West Passage and sharing his epic single handing experience has been such a gift Randall in his preparations.

In the following interview you can hear Matt and Randall chat about his upcoming voyage. They talk at length about the perils of ...

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Q and A

7 Dec

December 3, 2018

Day 60

Noon Position: 50 54S  52 07W

Course(t)/Speed(kts): ENE+ 6+

Wind(t/tws): NWxN 12

Sea(t/ft): NW 2

Sky: Thin Stratus

10ths Cloud Cover: 2

Bar(mb): 1016, falling

Cabin Temp(f): 61

Water Temp(f): 43

Relative Humidity(%): 67

Sail: Main and working jib, full. Reaching.

Noon-to-Noon Miles Made Good (nm): 163

Miles since departure: 8110

Avg. Miles/Day: 135

After the Cape Horn rounding, my wife was kind enough to send me a slug of comments from the Figure 8 site. Many thanks to all you Virtual Voyagers for the support and congrats.

In those comments, I found a few ...

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Preparing Totem for Coppercoat

7 Dec


Coppercoat’s advantages in durability (=savings!) and environmental friendliness (=how we live!) have made me more excited about antifouling than I believed possible. As if to complete the picture, Totem’s shiny new metallic hull is dazzling in the Sonoran sun. Once sanded to activate the copper the hull will oxidize to rich shade verdigris, but for now it is stunning. Applying Coppercoat was an intense day of work, and an even bigger effort to prep. Researching our options confirmed how critical good prep is for this unique antifouling to be effective: here’s what we did, and why.

Jamie and Rudolpho tackling
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Inside Play Day

6 Dec

December 2, 2018

Day 59

Noon Position: 51 57S  56 08W

Course(t)/Speed(kts): ENE+ 7+

Wind(t/tws): NWxW 20 – 25

Sea(t/ft): NW 5

Sky: Some cirrus; otherwise clear

10ths Cloud Cover: 2

Bar(mb): 1014, steady

Cabin Temp(f): 59

Water Temp(f): 43

Relative Humidity(%): 79

Sail: Working jib and main, three reefs each, close reach.

Noon-to-Noon Miles Made Good (nm): 179

Miles since departure: 7947

Avg. Miles/Day: 135

What mileage! Either I, in my sleep, have become a much better sailor, or we are riding a hefty NE current. I’m not pushing Mo nearly hard enough to warrant a straight 7.5 knots ...

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GOLEN GLOBE RACE: Back in the Atlantic, Attrition, Bending the Rules

5 Dec

GGR tracker

There’s certainly been no lack of drama in this year’s “remake” of the first non-stop round-the-world Golden Globe Race of 50 years ago. As one would expect the attrition rate has been high, with dismastings, rescues at sea, injuries, including one broken back, and very thankfully (so far) no fatalities. Of the 18 sailors who set out on this adventure back in July, only eight are still sailing. Or wait… that may be seven now, as word comes this morning that Susie Goodall, on DHL Starlight, has just set off her EPIRB. Bummer!

Amazingly, two GGR boats ...

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Thoughts on “Last Year’s” Voyage and Sunshine

5 Dec

December 1, 2018

Day 58

Noon Position: 53 27S 60 24W

Course(t)/Speed(kts): NExE 7

Wind(t/tws): WxN 15 – 16

Sea(t/ft): SW 2 and 12 (big old swell; we almost surf)

Sky: A front to windward and to lee ward; clear here.

10ths Cloud Cover: 1

Bar(mb): 1014, steady

Cabin Temp(f): 59

Water Temp(f): 43

Relative Humidity(%): 67

Sail: Big genoa and main, full. Reaching.

Noon-to-Noon Miles Made Good (nm): 122

Miles since departure: 7768

Avg. Miles/Day: 134

I keep referring in these logs to the Figure 8 Voyage 1.0, the first Figure 8 attempt, as what happened “last year.” In ...

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Susie Goodall pitchpoled and dismasted in Golden Globe Race

5 Dec
It looks like the Southern Ocean is still dishing out its balmy summer sailing conditions and has claimed yet another victim. British sailor Susie Goodall, racing solo in the Golden Globe Race, was rolled and dismasted and is out of the race. Goodall had been lying in fourth place behind the Estonian sailor Uku Randmaa, Dutch sailor Mark Slats and the leader, the indomitable ...
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Cape Horn, and onward…

4 Dec

November 30, 2018

Day 57

Noon Position: 54 36S 63 15W

Course(t)/Speed(kts): NExN 6

Wind(t/tws): SWxS 17 – 23

Sea(t/ft): SW 8 – 10, very steep; wind-over-current seas. Nearly pooped.

Sky: Alternating between squall and clear.

10ths Cloud Cover: 9

Bar(mb): 1008, rising

Cabin Temp(f): 52

Water Temp(f): 40, back down from yesterday’s 45

Relative Humidity(%): 69

Sail: Twins poled out.

Noon-to-Noon Miles Made Good (nm): 174 (Favoring current.)

Miles since departure: 7645

Avg. Miles/Day: 134

What can one say about Cape Horn, except that he is happy to have rounded it safely and in such fine weather. Apart from ...

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