Randall Reeves

Plodding Away the Miles

10 Sep

September 8, 2019

Days at Sea: 279
Days Since Departure: 344

Noon Position: 70 52N 146 50W
Course(t)/Speed(kts): WxN 6
Wind(t/tws): SE <10
Sea(t/ft): SE 1
Sky/10ths Cover: Overcast. Clear earlier, rain later. 10
Bar(mb): 1009+
On-deck Temp(f): 43
Cabin Temp(f): 65
Water Temp(f): 36
Relative Humidity(%): 40
Magnetic Variation: 17.6 

Sail: Motoring, main up.  

Noon-to-Noon Miles Made Good (nm): 146
Miles since departure: 35, 453

That’s the thing about the Figure 8–there are just so many many miles of it…

A not very interesting stretch of water, this. The sky is hung with cloud that now and then sends ...

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Mo Crosses the Demarcation Line into Alaska

9 Sep

September 7, 2019

Days at Sea: 278
Days Since Departure: 343

Noon Position: 70 25N  139 36W 
Course(t)/Speed(kts): WxN 6
Wind(t/tws): ExS 5
Sea(t/ft): E 1-2
Sky/10ths Cover: Clear, 0 
Bar(mb): 1015, steady
On-deck Temp(f): 45
Cabin Temp(f): 65
Water Temp(f): 37
Relative Humidity(%): 41
Magnetic Variation: 19.7

Sail: Under power. Main up, doing nothing.  

Noon-to-Noon Miles Made Good (nm): 148
Miles since departure: 35,307

8am. Sunup. On deck temperature: 35 degrees Fahrenheit. Water: 31. Water temperature the previous afternoon had been 46 and the day had been warm. Remembering that such temperature drops can be signals of approaching ice, ...

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TukWork

7 Sep

September 5, 2019
Tuktoyaktuk, Nunavut

Days since Departure: 343

Mandragore, containing her crew of Pablo and Pablo, made Tuk this morning, and together we warped to the pier next to the Northern store for fueling and watering. 

Fuel can be taken by jerries from the store pumps, a distance of 200 feet, or by calling a truck to the pier, and while the former requires hoofing one’s heavy cans, it avoids the delivery charge of the latter. We both chose hoofing it. 

I had the more fuel to take (100 gallons) and the more cans to transport. Without the slightest ...

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To Tuk

6 Sep

September 4, 2019

Days at Sea: 276
Days Since Departure: 340

Noon Position: 69 56N  132 25W 
Course(t)/Speed(kts): SW 5
Wind(t/tws): SE <10
Sea(t/ft): SE 1
Sky/10ths Cover: Altocumulus 9 
Bar(mb): 1011
On-deck Temp(f): 44
Cabin Temp(f):  57
Water Temp(f): 38
Relative Humidity(%): 50
Magnetic Variation: 20.9

Sail: #1 and main, full; wind on the beam.

Noon-to-Noon Miles Made Good (nm): 135
Miles since departure: 35,128

The strangest thing about yesterday was that two hours after rounding the top of the Baillie Islands, a large raven flew over the boat. The color pallet for pelagics favors white and pale grays. ...

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Overtopping the Baillie Islands

5 Sep

September 3, 2019

Days at Sea: 275
Days Since Departure: 339

Noon Position: 70 16N  125 53W
Course(t)/Speed(kts): WxN 5.5
Wind(t/tws): E 15
Sea(t/ft): SE 3
Sky/10ths Cover: Clear 0  
Bar(mb): 1015, steady
On-deck Temp(f): 45
Cabin Temp(f): 65
Water Temp(f): 32 (ice is near)
Relative Humidity(%): 35
Magnetic Variation: 20.7

Sail: Under engine; full sail as well.  

Noon-to-Noon Miles Made Good (nm): 132
Miles since departure: 34,993

After sunset, I slowed Mo so that I could sleep. The reason for the slowing was that as we approached Cape Parry, our clear water would become what the ice charts classify ...

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Sept 2, Slow Slowly West and North PLUS VIDEO

4 Sep

September 2, 2019

Days at Sea: 274
Days Since Departure: 338

Noon Position: 69 41N  199 42W
Course(t)/Speed(kts): WxN 4.2
Wind(t/tws): W 5
Sea(t/ft): NE 1
Sky/10ths Cover: Overcast 8 (Squalls with light snow till noon)
Bar(mb): 1019
On-deck Temp(f): 40
Cabin Temp(f): 65
Water Temp(f): 36
Relative Humidity(%): 34
Magnetic Variation: 19.5

Sail: Under power. 

Noon-to-Noon Miles Made Good (nm): 119
Miles since departure: 34,807

Miles to Tuk: 300

Little to report but progress, slow progress. We are motoring on a flat sea now and at the usual clip, but there is a current here in the Amundsen Gulf ...

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Sept 1, Underway again (and another Northwest Passage Video)

3 Sep

September 1, 2019

Days Since Departure: 337

Noon Position: 68 48N 114 43W
Course(t)/Speed(kts): N 4

Sail: Under power; main 1 reef

Miles since departure: 34,688

Winds are finally diminishing, but out in Dolphin and Union the short, stocky sea is still pushing Mo around. Not going to be fast for a while yet.

I remember the point during the 2014 Northwest Passage when I’d had enough, enough engine racket, enough of being stuck in a cabin that was either too cold or too hot, enough of the what-if-we-dont-make-it-then-what worry. That point was three days after Tuk on the 1000 ...

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Aug 31, Boat Bound in Bernard (plus Video)

2 Sep

August 31, 2019

Wind: NW15-20
Sky: Low and squally with SNOW
6am Temperatures–
On Deck: 37
Cabin: 45 (before I fired up the heater)
Water: 39

Snow. 

It’s too warm to stick, but that it’s falling at all I take as a sign. In the Arctic, the dog days of summer portend winter; autumn is coming quickly, and I’m but half way through the Northwest Passage. Half way and still pinned down by contrary winds in Bernard Harbor.

Where I live at the moment, inside the boat a quarter mile S of North Star Point, is comfortable enough, but within ...

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Pinned Down at Bernard Harbor

31 Aug

August 30, 2019

Wind: WNW20+
Sky: Low and squally with some pea-sized hail
6am Temperatures–
On Deck: 37
Cabin: 43 (before I fired up the heater)
Water: 40 (this is up from 33 degrees in Dolphin and Union)

The title of today’s report was going to be, “Images of a DEW Line Station,” but all day it has been blowing a three-quarter gale from the NW. Ragged cloud, rain and hail. Mo is pulling at her leash like a dog that’s not been walked in a week, and I don’t dare leave for the required hike inland to the abandoned ...

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To Bernard Harbor

30 Aug

Aug 28, 2019
Dolphin and Union Strait
Total Miles: 34,658
Days at Sea: 272
Days since Departure: 333

We depart in the early morning from Disappointment Harbor for … for where? I’m not sure.

I want to stage for a leap into Dolphin and Union Strait in the forecasted lighter winds of the next day, but where to wait in the interim is unclear. Fifty-four miles from Disappointment, I choose a divot in the headland behind Lady Franklin Point. Nothing fancy; just a place to hide for a few hours.

Winds on final approach are 25 on the nose. Anchor ...

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