About Tom Tripp

Tom is the publisher of www.OceanLines.biz, a website about passagemaking boats and information. He is also a contributor to Chesapeake Bay Magazine who has been at sea aboard everything from a 17-foot homemade wooden fishing boat to a 1,000-foot-long, 96,000-ton, nuclear-powered aircraft carrier.

Sea Sense Adds Trawler Training on Chesapeake

Sea Sense Offers Trawler Training

Sea Sense Offers Trawler Training

Sea Sense has added single-engine trawler training on Chesapeake Bay from Annapolis, MD.  These new courses are both the traditional scheduled classes for women as well as customized instructional charters for couples, families, and groups.  Training is conducted aboard a new, 47-foot Selene trawler, fully equipped from galley to flybridge with every modern amenity. You can read about the specific trawler in an earlier article we wrote here.  Students will be exposed to the most modern systems and equipment, including bow and stern thrusters, sophisticated electronics, and an engine room layout ideal for identifying and understanding boat systems.

Captain Patti Moore, co-founder of Sea Sense says, “These training classes are unique in that they offer potential trawler enthusiasts the opportunity to gain sufficient knowledge to confidently bareboat charter or to handle their own boat.”

Sea Sense-scheduled, women-only courses have a cruising curriculum that covers everything from boat-handling to confidence-building exercises. These are 5-day, 4-night classes scheduled monthly from May through October. As an incentive to fill the first season, the all-inclusive cost has been reduced to $3895 per person.

Instructional charters aboard the Selene are ideal for couples, families and groups and are customized to meet individual needs, calendars and cruising goals. They can also be scheduled from May through October. Sea Sense instructors are also available to teach aboard your own yacht (power or sail).

Copyright © 2010 by OceanLines LLC.  All rights reserved.

Sea Sense Adds Trawler Training on Chesapeake

Sea Sense Offers Trawler Training

Sea Sense Offers Trawler Training

Sea Sense has added single-engine trawler training on Chesapeake Bay from Annapolis, MD.  These new courses are both the traditional scheduled classes for women as well as customized instructional charters for couples, families, and groups.  Training is conducted aboard a new, 47-foot Selene trawler, fully equipped from galley to flybridge with every modern amenity. You can read about the specific trawler in an earlier article we wrote here.  Students will be exposed to the most modern systems and equipment, including bow and stern thrusters, sophisticated electronics, and an engine room layout ideal for identifying and understanding boat systems.

Captain Patti Moore, co-founder of Sea Sense says, “These training classes are unique in that they offer potential trawler enthusiasts the opportunity to gain sufficient knowledge to confidently bareboat charter or to handle their own boat.”

Sea Sense-scheduled, women-only courses have a cruising curriculum that covers everything from boat-handling to confidence-building exercises. These are 5-day, 4-night classes scheduled monthly from May through October. As an incentive to fill the first season, the all-inclusive cost has been reduced to $3895 per person.

Instructional charters aboard the Selene are ideal for couples, families and groups and are customized to meet individual needs, calendars and cruising goals. They can also be scheduled from May through October. Sea Sense instructors are also available to teach aboard your own yacht (power or sail).

Copyright © 2010 by OceanLines LLC.  All rights reserved.

ActiveCaptain on the iPad – Wicked Cool

ActiveCaptain on the iPad - Screenshot Courtesy of Jeffrey Siegel, ActiveCaptain

ActiveCaptain on the iPad – Screenshot Courtesy of Jeffrey Siegel, ActiveCaptain

I’ve been looking for a reason to have to get an iPad and I think now I’ve found it. In his latest on-the-road blog entry, Jeff Siegel of ActiveCaptain demonstrates how well the software works on the new tablet platform from Apple. Regular readers know I’m a big fan of ActiveCaptain — I use it on my Palm Centro with a Bluetooth GPS — but on the iPad it arrives at a whole new level.

As Siegel explains, ActiveCaptain will be included in an upcoming update for the Navimatics Charts and Tides software, and the app itself will work on both iPhone and iPad. He also notes that while offline, the iPad shows all of the ActiveCaptain data, and then, when Internet is available, can be re-synchronized with the live database so that you have the latest possible local information. Perfect.

He notes, as well, in a response to a reader comment, that Coastal Explorer, which ActiveCaptain now sells for a good price in its online store, will also do the synchronization. All we have to do now is get a PC maker to build a real-world tablet for us, maybe with an OLED screen and splash-proof case so we can use it on the flybridge.  And no, I cannot afford a Panasonic Toughbook. If there was some real competition for that one, maybe Panasonic would lower those prices from the stratosphere.

No, I don’t get paid by ActiveCaptain. I’m just a Believer. Go get it.

Copyright © 2010 by OceanLines LLC.  All rights reserved.

A Tall Ship Heads to Sea

The sail training barque Picton Castle, a square-rigger registered in the Cook Islands and based in Lunenburg Harbor, Nova Scotia, is about to depart its mooring and head off on its fifth circumnavigation. The 14-month, westbound trip will sail through the tropics under the command of its first and only captain, Daniel Moreland.

Some 44 trainees and 12 professional crew have spent the past four weeks finishing preparations for the voyage, including a haulout last month for a new coat of paint on the hull. The upper yards – royals and t’gallants – have been sanded and varnished, all the blocks have been overhauled, lines tarred, and inspections passed.

Sail Plan of the Barque Picton Castle

Sail Plan of the Barque Picton Castle

Picton Castle was built in 1928 as a motorized trawler, served as a Royal Navy minesweeper in World War II, and was converted to sail in 1997. Her crew must master the 175 lines that comprise her standing and running rig. As a barque, Picton Castle has a fore mast and main mast that are square-rigged, and her mizzen mast is rigged fore-and-aft.

Barque Picton Castle

Specifications

Sparred Length       179′
LOA                        148′
LOD                       135′
LWL                       130′
Draft                       14′ 6
Beam                      24′
Rig Height                97′
Freeboard                6′
Sail Area                 12,450 square feet
Tons                       284 GRT
Power                      690 HP diesel
Hull                          steel

Here’s the outline itinerary for the fifth World Voyage:

Itinerary for World Voyage 5, 2010-2011

Leg Location Port Date
Leg 1 Lunenburg, Nova Scotia, Canada April 12, 2010
  Panama  
  Galapagos Islands, Ecuador  
  Pitcairn Island  
  Gambier Islands, French Polynesia  
  Tahiti  
  Rarotonga, Cook Islands August 15, 2010
Leg 2 Rarotonga, Cook Islands August 16, 2010
  Palmerston Atoll, Cook Islands  
  Vava’u, Tonga  
  Suva, Fiji  
  Vanuatu  
  Bali, Indonesia November 12, 2010
Leg 3 Bali, Indonesia November 13, 2010
  Reunion  
  Cape Town, South Africa February 3 2011
Leg 4 Cape Town, South Africa February 4, 2011
  Namibia  
  St. Helena  
  Fernando de Noronha, Brazil  
  Lesser Antilles  
  Bermuda  
  Lunenburg, Nova Scotia, Canada June 18, 2011

 

You can still sign up for Leg 2 and beyond if you happen to be in a position to do that. And there are lots of ways to follow Picton Castle on its voyage. Captain Moreland keeps a log on the main website and a number of the trainees keep blogs, which are the best way to learn what a sail-training voyage is really all about.

Copyright © 2010 by OceanLines LLC.  All rights reserved.

Writers on the Water

Okay, so it’s not quite as memorable (yet?) as “Riders on the Storm,” the 1971 hit by The Doors, but a new blog by writers Christine Kling and Mike Jastrzebski  called Write on the Water, is a place to talk about the intersection of writing and living and working on the water. I was the guest author there today and I’m thrilled and honored that they asked me to write something for them.

New Blog Write On The Water

New Blog Write On The Water

Chris is already a famous (to me at least) author of a great mystery series featuring the fictional tug captain Seychelle Sullivan. And Mike is a full-time writer living on his 36′ sailboat, Roughdraft. OceanLines’ own guest author Victoria Allman, who writes our “Sea Fare” series of recipes for the cruiser and who wrote “Sea Fare:  A Chef’s Journey Across the Ocean.”

I know from talking with readers of OceanLines that many of you are also writers. Remember, the definition of “a writer” is “someone who writes.” Don’t buy the stodgy nonsense that you have to have been published to be considered a true writer. Writers write. Period. And from what I’ve read, some of you are very good writers.

One definition of a good writer is someone who can tell a compelling story. Our community has those by the drove. People like Ken Williams, John and Maria Torelli, and others who have compiled their writings into books.  And others, like Milt Baker and John Marshall and a host of other current cruisers, tell great stories in their blogs.  Of course, there are also the classic “nautical writers” of the age of sail, like Melville, Conrad and Dana. They were all seamen before they were writers. Derek Lundy points that out in his great book “The Way of a Ship,” which is is a fantastic account of his ancestor’s passage aboard the Beara Head, an iron-hulled square-rigger, that took a load of coal around Cape Horn.

If you’ve written about your time on the water, we’d like to hear about it and share it with our other readers. Send us a link to your blog or a book you’ve written and we’ll put together a page with everyone’s links on it. I know you’re out there, typing away on some kind of keyboard. Let’s hear about it! And stop by Write On The Water when you get a chance.

Copyright © 2010 by OceanLines LLC.  All rights reserved.

Video Debut: The Underway Series from OceanLines, Episode 1

By way of introducing this new video series, let me re-state what will become obvious to you:  I am a writer. And writers may have great ideas for video but viewers will likely suffer a bit while the writer learns to be a filmmaker. And with that ugly excuse for the quality of our first effort here, let me introduce “The Underway Series” from OceanLines, which will document some of the routines of living and cruising offshore on a trawler or sailing vessel.  This first episode covers the “Periodic Engine Room Check” which all offshore cruisers should be doing, power or sail.

OceanLines Video - "The Underway Engine Room Check"

OceanLines Video – "The Underway Engine Room Check"

The philosophy behind an hourly, or every-two-hours engine-room check is that most big problems start out as small ones. And if they’re picked up early, many if not most, can be taken care of quickly and easily. Whether it’s a problem of the liquid outside the boat coming in — as in a leaking thru-hull or shaft seal; or one of the internal fluids — like oil, fuel or hydraulic fluid — leaking out of a component and into the boat, noticing it right away is key to offshore safety.

In the engine room, then, you will mainly be looking for leaks of the kinds just mentioned.  And as Gregg Gandy, project manager for Kadey-Krogen Yachts, and longtime yacht captain, demonstrates, a ritualized inspection will ensure you don’t miss anything.

This video was filmed during an offshore delivery of a new Krogen 58′ while more than 100 nm off the east coast of the U.S. Because our boat was brand new, with just enough time on the boat to be “broken in,” Captain Gandy was comfortable with a two-hour interval for the check. Some captains check every hour and a few go longer. I would say one or two hours is probably the right interval. Many owners these days will put a thermal imaging or even plain visible light camera in the engine room, fed to one of the helm displays.

You might consider creating and using a checklist at first. As pilots know, checklists are great for ensuring that distracting conditions don’t cause you to miss something critical. Another key, and you can see it in this video, is doing the inspection the same way every time.  Gregg likes to go to the far aft end of the engine room and work his way forward.

You can see him checking the running generator (we had two aboard the Krogen 58′) for leaks, vibration, loose belts or unusual noises. He then moves to the shafts, seals and transmissions, looking for proper cooling of the shafts, smooth, vibration-free turning of the shafts, no unexpected noise or vibration or movement from the transmissions.

While we may not have been able to get good voice quality in the engine room (remember to wear hearing protection, by the way), we will do so in future segments. Let us know in the comments what else you’d like to see.  I promise that we’ll keep them short and as interesting as possible.

Special thanks, by the way, to the folks at Kadey-Krogen Yachts — Larry Polster, Gregg Gandy and Greg Kaufman — who made this trip, and this video possible.

Copyright © 2010 by OceanLines LLC.  All rights reserved.

Garmin Makes Huge Offer for Raymarine

Garmin-Proposed Helm for the Kadey-Krogen 55' Expedition

Garmin-Proposed Helm for the Kadey-Krogen 55' Expedition

In an announcement made on the London Stock Exchange today, Garmin announced it is offering 15 pence (19.74 cents U.S.) per share for all the shares of Raymarine Plc. Raymarine lately has been discussing the various offers made for its shares but had not specifically mentioned Garmin since talks broke down between the two firms last December.

In its filing, Garmin says Raymarine initially approached it about making an offer to purchase the company back in June of 2009 and that subsequent to a recently announced offer of 3.6 pence per share of Raymarine, the company decided to make an offer.

In its announcement, Garmin notes that its offer is:

- a 436 per cent. premium to the average share price of 2.8 pence per Raymarine Share in the three-month period ending on the day prior to the announcement of a possible offer for Raymarine on 11 March 2010;

- a 366 per cent. premium to the share price of 3.22 pence per Raymarine Share on the day prior to the announcement of a possible offer for Raymarine on 11 March 2010;

- a 275 per cent. premium to the possible amount of approximately 4 pence per Raymarine Share that would be available for return to Raymarine Shareholders under the non-offer proposal referred to in Raymarine’s announcement dated 21 April 2010; and

- a 152 per cent. premium to the share price of 5.95 pence per Raymarine Share as at the close of business on 27 April 2010, the closing price on the day prior to the date of this announcement.

Total consideration of approximately £12.5 million would be payable by Garmin to Raymarine Shareholders, assuming that no Raymarine Shares are issued between the date of this Announcement and the closing date of the Offer.

Garmin says it expects the offer will receive the necessary regulatory approvals. As of mid-afternoon today there has been no official response from Raymarine.

I believe this announcement is the latest evidence of the aggressive posture Garmin has taken in recent years toward the marine electronics market. The company has pioneered a great deal of innovation in non-marine markets and has become the de-facto market leader in general aviation, as well as dominating the handheld and automotive aftermarket GPS segments. Garmin made an innovative proposal for outfitting the new Kadey-Krogen 55′ Expedition when we asked the leading marine electronics companies to do so.

Copyright © 2010 by OceanLines LLC. All rights reserved.

Island Pilot Launches New IP535

New Island Pilot IP535 is Shown in this Computer Generated Image

New Island Pilot IP535 is Shown in this Computer Generated Image

Island Pilot is super-sizing its IPS-powered 435 into a new 531/2-foot model. New molds for the 535 have been built at the company’s yard in Zhuhai City, China, and Island Pilot reports that it has two firm orders already for the new yacht. If you really liked the 435 but wished it had a little more room, I think this new-but-familiar hull is going to be your ticket.

A CGI of the Flybridge Helm on the New Island Pilot IP535

A CGI of the Flybridge Helm on the New Island Pilot IP535

While the new hull will provide the extra luxury and roomier accommodations requested by Island Pilot customers, the IP535’s performance capabilities will derive from the latest IPS variant from Volvo Penta — the IPS II 900. The announcement from Island Pilot noted that in addition to three “joystick” docking stations, the IP535 will be fitted with Volvo Penta’s new “Dynamic Positioning System,” which holds heading and position automatically using a GPS array mounted on the radar arch.

On the performance side, here’s what Island Pilot says,

Extensive tank testing plus computer simulations predict a top speed of 33 knots with economical fast-cruising speeds between 18 and 28 knots. At slower speeds, the IP535 will have similar economy to single-screw displacement trawlers and mid-speed, semi-displacement cruisers. The pair of 700hp, D-11 diesels is aft in a walk-in, stand-up, uncluttered engine room accessed through a weather-tight door in the cockpit. The spacious engine room allows easy access to all sides of the engines and generator with room left over for a work bench and tool storage. Other systems normally crowded around the motors are located in an easily-accessed “basement” under the galley sole.

More from the Island Pilot press release:

The IP535’s high-end performance is complimented by her inviting and accommodating cockpit layout, spacious flybridge arrangement, and interior appointments. A 9-foot U-shaped settee is the focal point of the cockpit and with its own canopy the space is perfectly laid out for outdoor entertaining. Owners can select to have a full summer kitchen including grill and wet bar either in the cockpit, on the flybridge, or in both locations. The flybridge has space for three helm chairs or a pair of twins and is outfitted with a pair 15-inch Garmin touchscreens, the same found at the lower helm.

A signature feature of all Island Pilot yachts is the bright, open feeling of the deck house, with plenty of glass and 360-degree vistas. The IP535 continues this tradition with even more space—the U-shaped settee is 11×6 feet—the LED HDTV is 46 inches—and room remains for a pair of barrel easy chairs and the raised helm chairs. At 12×14 feet 6 inches, the deck house is highly customizable. Forward of the deck house, under the great expanse of windscreen, is the “great room” with the fully-equipped galley overlooking the dinette. Forward is an island-queen VIP stateroom and aft, under the deck house, is the full-width, mid-ship, master stateroom. Measuring 11×16 feet, this space can be configured to an owner’s preference and be fitted with an island queen, either angled or squared off, or a pair of twin berths. With her unique layout, the IP535 affords the privacy found in an aft-cabin yacht with the advantages of the sedan-styling. Reuben Trane comments, “The only time at night that owners are likely to even remember that guests are on board is if they all choose the same time to raid the fridge!”

Layout of the new Island Pilot IP535

Layout of the new Island Pilot IP535

The company says the new boat will debut at the 2011 Miami Boat Show.

Specifications for the Island Pilot IP535

Length on Deck:                          53’ 6”
LOA:                                                57’ 0”
LWL:                                               47’ 0”
Beam:                                            16’ 9”
Draft:                                               4’ 0”
Hardtop height:                            19’6” (radar arch folded) 
Displacement (full load):            54,500 lbs.
Power:                                            Volvo IPS900
Fuel:                                                600 U.S. gal. in three tanks
Water:                                             200 U.S. gal.
Holding Tank:                                100 U.S. gal.
Generator:                                     Mastervolt 11kW
Base Price:                                  $1.35 million, fully equipped (pre-construction price)

Copyright © 2010 by OceanLines LLC.  All rights reserved.

Krogen 58′ Northbound: Part 3

The magic of sunset at sea while aboard a trawler. . .

The magic of sunset at sea while aboard a trawler. . .

One of my favorite things about being at sea is “The Big Sky.” No, not the state of Montana or the great 1952 lubberly movie with Kirk Douglas — THIS big sky over me. Growing up in the hilly country of New England, the celestial vault never took up much more than half of the view above the horizon. Here, far off the coast of Georgia, a fairly calm sea permits a 180-degree perspective on the heavens. The sights and sounds of this big sky, both during the day and at night are highlights of a trip offshore.

A view of our position courtesy of Fugawi Marine ENC running NOAA ENC charts. Note the speed.

A view of our position courtesy of Fugawi Marine ENC running NOAA ENC charts. Note the speed.

Gregg and Greg are both standing at the helm, examining the chartplotting laptop as dawn arrives on our second day at sea. It’s still mostly dark, but a faint tangerine swath on the eastern horizon suggests where the sun will rise. As Greg Kaufman takes his watch, we agree things are running smoothly. Our speed over the ground (SOG) has risen to well over 10 knots, as the wind and swell have veered into the southeast, and the ride has smoothed dramatically. The engines are still only burning about 6.3 gallons per hour, combined, and the faint hum we hear from them in the pilothouse is accompanied by the sounds of the rushing water along the hull; a rhythm that shifts quietly and constantly with the set of the waves and wind. 

The tangerine deepens at its heart and bleeds a rose stain farther along the horizon and up into the sky and then, abruptly, the orb of the sun rises from the sea. It happens quickly, and the drowsy pilothouse is suddenly flooded in warm, yellow sun. Gregg has been drinking coffee on his 2-6 watch, but a fresh pot brewing in the galley awakens my breakfast appetite and soon enough I’ve got a bowl of cereal and some fruit in hand. The ride is so smooth now I fling caution to the wind and climb the steps back up into the pilothouse without “keeping one hand for myself and one for the boat.” Apparently, Poseidon was still asleep, because I make it to the settee in the pilothouse without spilling anything. 

Kadey-Krogen's Greg Kaufman has the sunrise watch.

Kadey-Krogen's Greg Kaufman has the sunrise watch.

After breakfast, we check the decks for flying fish who had one-way tickets. There are none today, which is a little surprising, given that we could see and hear them during the night, occasionally running into the hull. It’s probably just as well that we didn’t find any; flying fish sushi at this hour seems less than appealing. Gregg uses the freshwater washdown on the foredeck to rinse the Portuguese bridge and pilothouse windows of their salt crust from yesterday’s bash. I’m taking some time to wander around the yacht, taking pictures and making notes for a more detailed article about the Krogen 58′, which I’ll write up when I get home. 

The wind continues to veer and by midday is mostly from the southwest. We’re also in the core of the Gulf Stream and our SOG has risen above 12 knots — quite a fantastic speed for a trawler running at an economical cruise setting of 1,850 rpm.  Gregg managed to download the latest GRIB files before we were over the horizon, so we spend some time in the morning looking at the forecasted winds overlaid on the chartplotting software on his Mac laptop. It looks like a good day, with the winds behind us, at least until sometime early tomorrow morning. 

While today’s cruisers do not HAVE to be completely disconnected from the rest of the world, with Internet phone, TV and data services available by satellite, we don’t have any of those resources so my cell phone is silent and my laptop is without any connections. My brain eventually also catches up to this reality and it’s then that I really begin to notice little details — like how I can see the differencein direction of the wind waves and ocean swells. I look more closely at the old radar set we have and I realize I can see that difference in the “sea clutter” returns on the screen, too. That will be handy at night when I can’t see the waves visually. 

There’s more life out here than first meets the eye, too.  We’re regularly visited by bottlenose dolphins; big, gray athletes running across our course who suddenly change course to check out our pitiful bow wave and then, unimpressed, move on. There are large patches of Sargassum seaweed; orphans snatched from the great Sargasso Sea by eddies of the Gulf Stream — each a haven for entire food chains floating underneath them in the water column. 

Audubon's Shearwater. Photo by Flickr user "Jforb"

Audubon's Shearwater. Photo by Flickr user "Jforb"

What looks like an Audubon’s Shearwater swings lazily by, evidently concluding we are not edible and then darting off to check out a suspicious surface swirl off our port beam. These birds periodically pass us and I wonder how they manage so far from land. The Gulf Stream this time of year is beginning to fill with the pelagic birds as they begin northward migrations. North Carolina, incidentally, is a great place to take some offshore pelagic bird trips. Check out this website of Brian Patteson’s

Traffic is pretty light and we seem to have the sea to ourselves for the day. The southwest winds persist and we make great time, racing along in the middle of the Gulf Stream.  It’s clear from the forecast and our progress that it’s going to be a race to the North Carolina coast for us. Our hope is to get as close as possible to North Carolina before the wind quickly shifts to the northeast, courtesy of a fast-moving cold front coming from the mid-west. By day’s end, we’re fairly certain there will be more head-bashing before we get where we’re going. 

Atlantic Ocean Sunset From a Trawler

Atlantic Ocean Sunset From a Trawler

After an early sailor’s dinner, Gregg heads below to get some sleep. The other Greg and I enjoy a spectacular sunset. The wind has picked up but it’s still calm enough for me to wander around the side decks experimenting with my camera. There are enough clouds around that the sunset has some canvas to paint on and it gets better and better as each moment passes. And then, as suddenly as it rose 13 or so hours earlier, the sun sets and a gray haze mutes the colors. 

Our ship sails steadily northward through the descending night. The pilothouse is darkened; all the lights and screens dimmed as far as possible to preserve night vision. I periodically step out onto the sidedeck to look at the stars. Low in the west, Orion poses majestically in full hunter glory. The dark skies of the moonless night pull the stars into three-dimensional relief and the constellations now truly resemble their ancient namesakes. I can even see the Orion Nebula, M42, with my naked eyes. Overhead a cloud stretches to the eastern horizon in a broad belt. As my eyes continue to adapt, I realize I’m looking at the Milky Way — an edge-on view into the heart of our very own galaxy, with its dense “cloud” of stars and gas paving my own sky. 

Later, on watch, stars rising from the ocean play tricks on my eyes and I think they are ships hull-down at the horizon. I have to watch them steadily to reassure myself they are indeed off-world and not the approaching range lights of some container-carrying leviathan. I have to move my gaze constantly to pick up faint lights with my more sensitive peripheral vision. Thankfully, the radar faithfully confirms or denies each apparition. I would be significantly less comfortable without this modern aid. 

Gregg comes up to the pilothouse shortly before his 2 a.m. watch and does an engine room check. We each check it at the beginning of our watch and once at mid-watch, which means someone has eyes on all the running equipment every two hours while we’re underway. We look for leaks in the shaft seals, hoses and thru-hulls; loose belts or pulleys; signs of oil or fuel anywhere, and finally check the sight gauges on the fuel tanks. We know to a small fraction of a gallon how much fuel we’re using, thanks to the digital information buss on the John Deere engines, but it’s nice to be reassured by a logical level in the sight glass. 

As I handover the watch to Gregg is the wind is picking up and beginning to complete it’s veering circle of the last 36 hours. By dawn we are once again bucking a stiff headwind and sea. Despite the pitching of the boat, I have no trouble getting some sleep in the forward stateroom, although eventually something in the anchor locker forward of my stateroom bulkhead decides to knock against the bulkhead in rhythm with the waves. 

This time we only have to endure the bashing for a couple of hours and then we begin to feel the lee effect of North Carolina. By mid-morning on Sunday (I think it’s Sunday; you lose track of the time and the day of the week quickly out here…) we are approaching the entrance to the Cape Fear River south of Wilmington. We follow a tug towing a barge up to the city, but duck out of the river and across to the Intracoastal again and head for our marina at Wrightsville Beach. 

Gregg brings the big Krogen up the channel toward the face dock at the marina and executes a beautiful 180; the starboard side coming within inches of the dock as he completes the turn. He’s done this a few times. I step off the boat because I’ve got a plane to catch back to the other real world, but the two Greg(g)s will pick up another crewmember and continue northward on Monday. 

Our leg from Jensen Beach to Wrightsville Beach took approximately 47 hours. We traveled as far as 120 nm offshore and in the core of the Gulf Stream saw speeds as high as 12.6 knots. The engines ran at a nearly constant 1,850 rpm and the smaller of our two generators also ran the duration. We burned less than 300 gallons of diesel fuel and suffered no mechanical or systems failures. The yacht handled breaking waves in the departure inlet of greater than 10 feet and serenely traveled through both head, quartering and following seas without complaint or wander. It was a great trip on a seaworthy yacht and I won’t forget it. 

Copyright © 2010 by OceanLines LLC.  All rights reserved.