Monday, December 28, 2009

View of Manhatten from the rooftop of the Brooklyn apartment we visited before departing JFK.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Alright all ye blog watchers, we on the boat apologize for the lack of content over the last two months.

Though it may seem that we fell off of the face of the earth, we of course did not. We took a hiatus, albeit an unannounced hiatus and returned to the motherland - Maine. This was both a good and a bad thing. We got a chance to refill the coffers and see family and friends, and we had ample time to think through our next move. And this is where the depressing bit comes in. After much knashing of teeth and pulling of hair, it seems that given the nature of the boat and the nature of nature itself, we cannot continue. Not now, not on this coast, not without winning the lottery.

So, thank you all for coming with us, it was very nice to read your comments, and to know that you were out there rooting for us.

In some capacity, we will continue to post. There is a large backlog of photos, and we continue to seek stories and adventures.

Big Bird

We've got the technology

Robert and Gib pulling the engine off of its mounts for further inspection.

We spoke to over half a dozen diesel mechanics as well as distributors and even the Norwegian manufacturer and we still don't know whats wrong with her.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

We took off the outboard to re-position the bracket it was mounted on, and this is a time-lapse of the process.
We had a pod of about 50 Pacific White-sided dolphins come play with us one morning near Cape Mendocino
Now that we've spent a few days in Monterey, we've finally mustered the energy to re-live our exhausting 46-hour sail to share with our followers.

After spending a week inland in Davis, CA, Anna decided to come back for more adventures, and arrived in Bodega Bay on Tuesday afternoon. We got the boat ready to go, grabbed a short night’s sleep, and left Bodega Bay on Wednesday morning around 4:00. Dinghy in tow, the wind was calm, which gave us a chance to try out the new outboard. The verdict: it was mounted too high, which meant that it bounced in and out of the water, not giving us much forward propulsion. Ten minutes off the dock and the list of projects to do at the next port stop had already began. We were forced to become traditional sailors, only moving when the wind was blowing.

That afternoon the winds filled in out of the NNW, which meant we’d be sailing down-wind for this leg. We rounded Point Reyes again, knowing we were still within range of the Bodega Bay Coast Guard if anything were to go wrong. Fortunately it didn’t, and that night we passed by the Farralon Islands and crossed 3 shipping lanes outside of San Francisco, successfully avoiding all traffic.

Early the next morning the auto-pilot, who had been our most valuable watch-member, became disabled when part of the bracket fell off. With Gilbert alone on watch (and Eliah and Anna comfortably asleep below), he found himself tied to the tiller, and not able to do anything else on deck. He watched, not able to prevent it from happening, as the whisker-pull broke and fell overboard, and as our Genoa jib became tangled in itself, its sheets, and the spinnaker halyard .

The swell built throughout the day, and outside of Monterey Bay we were in steady 15+ foot seas. This time no one got sea-sick, but no one was too interested in cooking or eating either. One 18-foot wave pooped our cockpit (crashed into the cockpit, for our non-sailor followers) and filled it up. Fortunately our hatch-covers proved to be water-tight, as no water leaked below deck. Another wave flipped our dinghy, which essentially turned it into a sea-anchor. Eliah re-led the tow line and hauled it in on one of our winches, and we made it off to our Starboard side, where it would sit for the remainder of the journey.

At about 10:00 Thursday night, we were 4 miles off of Monterey when the wind died. Not wanting to be traditional-style sailors in an area of traffic, we started the outboard and motored in for those last 4 miles, a journey which took us 4 hours. We came into the marina about 2:30 AM Friday morning, gorged ourselves on fast-food, and went to sleep.

Now we’re in Monterey Bay, and we’re excited that we finally made it to an intended destination. Monterey is famous for its marine life, and we’ve seen seals, sea lions and sea otters since arriving.
-Written by Anna Peters

Friday, October 23, 2009

We made it to Monterey. Yay.

It was another rough ride though. Not so yay.
The city looks pretty cool though - we'll put up some good photos soon.
And... stay tuned for details about our last transit because it was very swell.
More friends - actually, they aren't that friendly. They bark really loud all night, they are basically 800 pound aquatic dobermans.

While cleaning barnacles off of a fellow cruiser's prop one of these gals came and checked me out - I'm glad she wasn't that interested in me.
Furry friends - Eureka bay (taken awhile ago)

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

We've decided, at least for the time being, not to try to repair our main engine, as nothing we've tried so far keeps her happy for very long. Instead, we picked up a new outboard in San Francisco, and will be betting our lives, or at least our pride, on it working for us. Anna, our third crew member for the California section of our sailing, went home from Bodega Bay, but is coming back today, and our plan is to get under way and see how far South we can get. Stay posted!

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Here we are in the public marina of scenic but gray Bodega Bay.

Eliah, Gilbert and Anna enjoying a gentle, albeit chilly, tow back to Bodega Bay.

These guys were as stoked to help us as we were to get (another) free tow. We would have bought them drinks in Bodega Bay, except there's no bar in the whole town, which they failed to mention when they asked if we wanted a tow to Bodega Bay.

Eliah and Gilbert make every decision together, down to what they wear for the day.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

On October 9th at about 0700, Gilbert was on watch and Eliah and Anna were asleep below, recovering after a rough rounding of Cape Mendocino, which involved 30+knots of wind, and 10-12 foot seas. We were about 6 miles WSW of Point Reyes, about 30 miles off of San Francisco, when our engine sucked a valve into the cylinder and died. Again. Gilbert wasted no time shutting down the engine, and Eliah hailed the San Francisco Coast Guard to see if they could get us in touch with a tow company. The Bodega Bay (about 50 miles N of SF) Coast Guard picked up on our call, and sent a vessel out to check on us. When they got there they asked if we wanted a tow back to Bodega Bay. While not our intended destination, a free tow is a free tow so we accepted. Now we’re in Bodega Bay, which was where Hitchcock’s The Birds was filmed in 1963, and it appears as if the guano has been accumulating on the docks ever since. Stay posted for some pictures of this last voyage, and some videos of our broken engine.