Randall Reeves

Light Wind but Contrary

27 Sep

September 26, 2019

Days at Sea: 292/Days Since Departure: 361

Noon Position: 53 19N  157 48W
Course(t)/Speed(kts): ExS 6
Wind(t/tws): S 10
Sea(t/ft): S 1
Sail: Main and big genoa, close hauled.

Noon-to-Noon Miles Made Good (nm): 120
Miles since departure: 37,168

 

Light wind day. Both big sails up and close hauled. Slow. Wind can’t make up its mind. Our heading is E but snakes to the N and then S as the breeze meanders about. Mostly we are losing ground to the N. This makes me uncomfortable given the big blow N of us due the first of ...

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Shooting the Unalga Pass

25 Sep

September 24, 2019
Days Since Departure: 359

Noon Position: 53 38N. 164 54W
Course(t)/Speed(kts): ExS 5
Wind(t/tws): W 10
Sea(t/ft): S 3

Noon-to-Noon Miles Made Good (nm): 60 (since Dutch departure at midnight)
Miles since departure: 36,915

Note: One photo because my main satellite system is down for the moment.

Three gates in the vicinity of Dutch Harbor connect the Bering and the larger Pacific; they are Unimak Pass, Akutan Pass and Unalga Pass, with Unimak being the largest and most distant and Unalga, the closest and smallest. Only Unimak is lit.

During an ebb, the pent up forces of ...

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Images of Dutch

24 Sep

September 23, 2019

Again, just passing through and quickly.

One day to sit out the blow, which pushed hard through the Iluilui Harbor cut, turning the water white. Mo was snugged up behind a big crab boat and almost entirely out of the wind. Thus, my two bow lines, two stern lines and four springs were overkill; I spent the day watching the gale from the equivalent of a hotel window. Spume flew two boat lengths out, but Mo never moved.

And one day to get ready. Refresh Monte’s tiller lines; refresh worn sheets, check running and standing rigging, repack ...

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A Return to Home Waters

22 Sep

September 20, 2019

Days at Sea: 289
Days Since Departure: 355

Noon Position: 54 54N  166 48W
Course(t)/Speed(kts): SxE 7
Wind(t/tws): NW 15
Sea(t/ft): NW 2
Sky/10ths Cover: Squalls and cumulus, rain in the squalls, 8
Bar(mb): 1007, steady
On-deck Temp(f): 56
Cabin Temp(f): 65
Water Temp(f): 49
Relative Humidity(%): 61
Magnetic Variation: 8.7

Sail: Main and big genoa out full. Broad reaching.

Noon-to-Noon Miles Made Good (nm): 150
Miles since departure: 36,787

Two things.

First, the sky is squally. Before and after the squalls, cottony cumulus fail to obscure a backdrop of pale blue. In the squalls all is ...

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Monte Gives a Pep Talk

21 Sep

September 19, 2019

Days at Sea: 288
Days Since Departure: 354

Noon Position: 57 24N  167 25W
Course(t)/Speed(kts): SxE 6
Wind(t/tws): ENE 5+
Sea(t/ft): E2, S4
Sky/10ths Cover: Drizzle, 10
Bar(mb): 1002+, steady
On-deck Temp(f): 57
Cabin Temp(f): 65
Water Temp(f): 50
Relative Humidity(%): 49
Magnetic Variation: 8.4

Sail: Working jib and main; what there is of wind is on the beam. 

Noon-to-Noon Miles Made Good (nm): 143
Miles since departure: 36,637

—-

Randall: Have you seen the weather forecast for the Gulf of Alaska, Monte? It’s looking pretty grim.
Monte: Senior, I do not consult your forecasts. A forecast ...

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Onward to Dutch Harbor

20 Sep

September 18, 2019

Days at Sea: 287
Days Since Departure: 353

Noon Position: 59 45N  168 97W
Course(t)/Speed(kts): SxE 7
Wind(t/tws): NE 18
Sea(t/ft): NE 10+
Sky/10ths Cover: Mostly clear; post-low cumulus astern. 3
Bar(mb): 997
On-deck Temp(f): ?
Cabin Temp(f): 57
Water Temp(f): 52
Relative Humidity(%): 68
Magnetic Variation: 8.1

Sail: All three sails flying. Wind on port quarter

Noon-to-Noon Miles Made Good (nm): 152
Miles since departure: 36,494

The barometer got as low as 991, but by 4am wind velocities hadn’t changed in hours and neither had the seas, which only rarely threw over Mo their loving embrace ...

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A Bering Sea Blow

19 Sep

September 17, 2019

Days at Sea: 286
Days Since Departure: 352

Noon Position: 62 16N  167 36W
Course(t)/Speed(kts): SxW 7
Wind(t/tws): ENE 30
Sea(t/ft): ENE 10

Sail: Working jib rolled up by half; broad reach.

Noon-to-Noon Miles Made Good (nm): 146
Miles since departure: 36,342

I rode the twin headsails all night and Mo burned up the road. But by dawn, wind had veered too far into the E to hold them longer. I doused the poles before coffee and while the sky was still red at the margins and only then noticed wind was already well over 20 knots. ...

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Nome Departure

18 Sep

September 16, 2019
Nome, Alaska

I was climbing down the pier ladder to the boat when I heard a hail. “You’ve been one-upped,” yelled a man standing over where Tecla had moored the previous night.

“Not likely,” I replied before I could check myself.

Tekla is an unusual vessel, a steel-hulled gaff ketch built in the Netherlands in 1915 and recently restored. Now she’s a sail-training vessel that’s just completed the Northwest Passage. A small crowd had gathered to admire her, and among them, this man; gray-haired; short of stature and wearing a blue jacket and sock cap.

“Isn’t she ...

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Images of Nome

17 Sep

September 15, 2019
Nome, Alaska

One thing singlehanding teaches is the beauty of uninterrupted sleep. Even if he wakes naturally a time or two on that first night, once in port, the sailor’s shedding of responsibility and an unmoving bed are the sweetest luxury.

Next day to chores. The fuel truck was called and tanks filled but not jerry cans. Their time is past, and I gave half of them away to other boats. From here on extended calm should be the least of our worries. In the afternoon, a complete oil and filter change by way of a thank ...

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Bonus Post: A return date and a podcast!

17 Sep

Hi awesome friends of the Figure 8 Voyage

Well after long conversations about logistics, weather, Fleet Week and other shenanigans we’ve landed on a return date.

Randall and Moli plan to sail under the Golden Gate Bridge sometime on Saturday October 19th 2019.

If you’d like to be there (on land or on a boat) please make sure you’ve registered with us as we’ll be sending day-of logistics through email and not on here. If you haven’t sent us your information please do so using this link.

We’ll also looking for help with a couple of things. If you’re able ...

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