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 ...
Wind: NW15-20 Sky: Low and squally with SNOW 6am Temperatures– On Deck: 37 Cabin: 45 (before I fired up the heater) Water: 39
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 ...
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 ...
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 ...
August 27, 2019 Coronation Gulf Total Miles: 34,600 Days at Sea: 271 Days since Departure: 333
Winds are on the nose all day but at not more than ten knots. What slows us is the rolling chop from higher winds further W. Still, I can’t complain. By late afternoon, we’ve come abreast of the Richardson Islands, which decorate the northeastern corner of Coronation Gulf.
There are but two known anchorages in this island group, and neither looks appealing. But the next stop is a full ten hours further on. So, I decide to do a bit of exploring.
August 26, 2019 Total Miles: 34,464 Days at Sea: 269 Days since Departure: 331
The forecast calls for SW20, but the wind is highly dynamic all day, light to the Finlayson Islands, strong enough and far enough S thereafter to sail close hauled for a few hours, then light again as the day waned.
In the night and as we made approach to Byron Bay, a large thunderhead formed in the SW. It poured so much rain that the water top turned white. Mo got a drencher for ten minutes and then had to claw through very stiff SW winds ...
Sunday morning. I am kick-the-dog frustrated. Wind is still hard and cold from the SW, day after day, relentlessly the wrong way, pinning us down in Cambridge Bay. And it is the same for as far out as the forecasts care to predict. How can we get home in such a wind?
From the cockpit, I can see a lone wooden platform on the beach near the tank farm, the cradle in which this boat stood the winter of 2014/15, now old and gray as driftwood. It’s a sign, I think, inviting Mo’s return. ...
The blow blew itself out overnight, but weather has continued to be unsettled. Today, strong winds from the SE, rain and a heavy, ragged cloud. In the morning I shifted Mo to the pier in town for fuel only to find the wind increasing still and the pier foaming with chop.
Thinking I could dinghy in for fuel, I anchored near town and just off where Amundsen’s Maud came to rest so many years ago. But the berth was too small, and it felt unwise to leave the boat in such blustery conditions.
Randall Reeves grew up reading about and dreaming of the sea. He learned to sail on the rivers of central California and interviewed world-famous solo sailor, Bernard Moitessier, for his college radio station, an event that changed his life. Randall’s blue-water sailing began in 2006 when he crewed on a 40-foot boat for a 26-day, 3,000-mile passage from Hawaii to British Columbia where “everything went gloriously wrong.” He was hooked. In 2010, Randall departed San Francisco for a two-year, 12,000-mile solo-loop of the Pacific in a 30-foot sailboat. Randall crewed the Northwest Passage in 2014, a grueling 65 days over an ice-strewn 5,000-mile course aboard one of only seven boats to complete the Arctic run that year. Randall’s preparations in 2016 have included long passages aboard his new Figure 8 boat from Kodiak, Alaska to Hawaii and back to his home in San Francisco, a total of 7,000 miles. Randall is a licensed Master of vessels to 50 Gross Tons