Marblehead to Halifax Race

This Sunday the offshore Race to Halifax (in Nova Scotia, Canada) started in Marblehead, MA. We got a group of friends together and sailed to see the start.
Wind and weather were perfect and we enjoyed watching the long line of boats (app 80) under spinnaker slowly disappear behind the horizon.
A short swim for the boys, a nice lunch, a seal and a whale rounded off another perfect day on the ocean.

We want more of those!

 

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All hands on deck

As the sun begins its ascent under puffy clouds and calmer blue water, Ellen joins the captain’s watch with coffee in hand. All is good, peaceful and calm until we hear “pop” and realize the lashing on the genoa exploded.

The captain quickly assessed the damage and decisively determines the sail must be replaced and quickly assembles the sleeping crew from down below. Like a good pirate, Roger quickly removes not one, but two eye patches as he scrambles to the top deck preparation for the emergency sail amputation and replacement at sea. As the crew rushes to the bow, Ellen holds the course steady and prevents a monster, rogue wave from crashing and clearing the deck.

As Captain Philip moves to the foredeck with pliers between his teeth to disengage the suffering genoa, Roger, Doug and Ulf prepare for battle as they wrestle the wounded genoa as if it were a great white shark

As the crew works feverishly to replace the sail, bare breastedly Roger begins hoisting the sail. Voices are barely audible under the thunderous sound as the lazy sheet lashed angrily in the wind. Doug fearlessly risks losing an eye as the lazy sheet tries to extract a pound of his flesh when he steps in front of its wrath to untangle it.

Once the treacherous task is done, high fives all around and happy smiles filled with a feeling of accomplishment — or perhaps just happy not to have been swept off the deck. And then, from the helm, phenonomen is witnessed. Almost immediately, bucket showers abound and the faint smell of clean permeates Tioga. Clean shirts for everyone ! As it is said often here on Tioga, life is good!

[categories Bermuda, ANT2BDA , 2017]

Leaving the Caribbean

The waters in our favorite cove on the backside of Gustavia turned out to be too choppy last night and we decided to anchor on the other side of the main channel in a pretty tight anchorage. In the morning, we were happy that the anchor had not dragged and got organized.
Ulf, Ellen and Roger went to town to go sightseeing and to get a few provisions, while Doug and Philip prepped the boat, dried the gennaker, downloaded weather data etc.
The local Harbormaster paid us a visit and were relieved that he was granting us stay until noon without charge to take care of our “repairs”…
We lifted anchor and had the genoa unfurled by noon under the hot sun and beautiful blue sky.
Quite quickly we got in tune with the swell of the ocean, enjoyed the dark blue water and left St Martin and Anguilla behind.
Ellen, again, worked her magic in the kitchen, the sun set and we started our watch schedule.
Due to the wet sailing conditions we had to close most hatches, turning our sleeping quarters into steam saunas.
As we sail north, we will hopefully find lower temperatures and get a little more sleep.
For now, the best place is in the cockpit with perfect temperatures, some stars and clouds above as well as the waxing moon.

The forecast looks pretty good and we are looking forward to some more prefect sailing days. We have roughly 850nm to go.

[categories 2017, Ant2Bda, Bermuda]