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B.J. Porter

Under Way...bye For 8-9 Days

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Reaching out of Hampton now. You can track us in the Salty Dawg Rally site or our blog.

 

 

Thanks to all for for your help and hospitality.

 

I'll check in when I get there!

 

(null)

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Have fun. We will hold up our end of the conversation till you rejoin.

 

What are folks having for lunch?

 

Ham bunwiches with jalapeno mustard and mayo. You?

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I just had some leftover chinese

 

food.

 

Putting new brake pads on the jeep this weekend.

 

(fair winds B.J., envy goes at as per usual ;))

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Road trip to NYC. Junk mostly but a nice Italian dinner on the upper east side. Cabs take credit cards and have tv in them.fark me, I hate tv in cabs or gas pumps- what's up with that.

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BJ has completed about 300nm.

 

He did find and ride a nice little warm eddy. Looking at his speeds I would guess he picked up about a kt of current for 8 hours.

 

post-61520-0-80871200-1352659859_thumb.jpg

 

He has been averaging about 6.8 kts of boat speed with 10-15 kts of wind

 

Tomorrow the wind comes forward and get stronger - should be much faster.

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BJ has had the expected/forecast stronger (20kts with gusts to 25) and more forward winds yesterday and today.

 

His boat speed has been about 7 - 7.5kts, so he has probably been well reefed down for comfort. The polars I was using did over estimate BJ's actual speed.

 

The small bubble low above the BVI, that was hinted at in the early forecasts, looks like it will in fact develop. It will move north, and its effect will be to kill the wind along BJ's course (under the low = westerly winds from the low canceling out the trade winds). So, there will be at least a couple days of light winds.

 

post-8534-0-29792100-1352807038_thumb.jpg

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This from BJ last night. I have the email address, which he has asked me to close-hold because of very low bandwidth, and can forward messages.

 

--------------------------------------------

 

Don't know if anyone on SA is tracking our progress, but I thought I'd send an e-mail update so you could update anyone curious.

 

All is well so far. Last 24 hours or so have been bouncy with breeze up to mid 30's and some squalls. Not everyone has gotten a lot of sleep.

 

Yesterday was a gorgeous day, caught a few Mahi and it was just beautiful out here.

 

Current prediction from our weather router is that the wind will die back tomorrow and we will likely be motorin. We've followed his advice though to crack off onto a beam reach and head a bit SW in order to give everyone some rest and a good night's sleep.

 

If anyone wants to reach us by SSB we're on with the Salty Dawgs net at 0800 and 2000 Atlantic Time on 4036, and on the Doo-dah net @ 1700 on 8152 Mhz. If wanyone wants to set something up you can e-mail me back times & frequencies.

----------------------------------------------

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This from BJ last night. I have the email address, which he has asked me to close-hold because of very low bandwidth, and can forward messages.

 

--------------------------------------------

 

Don't know if anyone on SA is tracking our progress, but I thought I'd send an e-mail update so you could update anyone curious.

 

All is well so far. Last 24 hours or so have been bouncy with breeze up to mid 30's and some squalls. Not everyone has gotten a lot of sleep.

 

Yesterday was a gorgeous day, caught a few Mahi and it was just beautiful out here.

 

Current prediction from our weather router is that the wind will die back tomorrow and we will likely be motorin. We've followed his advice though to crack off onto a beam reach and head a bit SW in order to give everyone some rest and a good night's sleep.

 

If anyone wants to reach us by SSB we're on with the Salty Dawgs net at 0800 and 2000 Atlantic Time on 4036, and on the Doo-dah net @ 1700 on 8152 Mhz. If wanyone wants to set something up you can e-mail me back times & frequencies.

----------------------------------------------

 

 

Thanks Moe,

 

I was about to question the S-SSW CMG since yesterday that is reflected in his position data. This explains it.

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Man, that's cool that they supplement their food by fishing. I wish I knew how to fish worth a damn. I'll be dead when I run out of MRE's once the zombies come. :(

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I can't fish either.

 

Went to the Boundary Waters. Canoed to a spot where one of the regulars claimed you can practically reach down and pick the fish up. ANYONE can catch fish there, I was informed.

 

Anyone except me.

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The last salmon I caught two weks ago put up a good battle and I had him in on the beach, laying there gasping and I decided I would release him. I bent down with my pliers in my hand to take the hook out when all of a sudden he sprang back into action and snapped my line and swam off.

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We've followed his advice though to crack off onto a beam reach and head a bit SW in order to give everyone some rest and a good night's sleep.

 

Got to say I would not have sagged off - our rule: never sag off just for comfort, because you will have to make it up and regret it when you do.

 

The evening of the 14th and then into mid-day of the 15th does looks like a motoring time. So, I guess the theory here is that they will have a day or so of motoring and can make it up then - - but motoring into waves, even small ones is usually slow and painful.

 

Right now, from where they are at the last position report (now slightly south/west of the GC track), it looks like the wind will be pretty far forward for the 15th, 16th and 17th, but nothing over 15kts TWS.

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I was lonely on the SSB tonight. I kind of forgot the different time zone :rolleyes:

The USCG was trying to track down a DSC distress call on 2182. Hope that wasn't anyone we know.

 

If anyone wants to reach us by SSB we're on with the Salty Dawgs net at 0800 and 2000 Atlantic Time on 4036, and on the Doo-dah net @ 1700 on 8152 Mhz. If wanyone wants to set something up you can e-mail me back times & frequencies.

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Man, that's cool that they supplement their food by fishing. I wish I knew how to fish worth a damn. I'll be dead when I run out of MRE's once the zombies come. :(

 

I just tell folk I fish like a conservationist, I leave it for the next gereration.

 

Now that BJ is out of ear-shot. Ya know, I for a time had him pegged for one of those folk who spent their time setting their boat up for the "voyage" and never left the dock. So happy to see him and fambily out there and doing it.

 

Estar, How are you tracking them? AIS web or SSB contact?

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He is headed your way eventually, Dutch. I suspect you'll get to meet them in a year or so.

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He is using Winlink AFAIK. I'll miss the net tonight more than likely but will try the nets again Friday.

Man, that's cool that they supplement their food by fishing. I wish I knew how to fish worth a damn. I'll be dead when I run out of MRE's once the zombies come. :(

 

Estar, How are you tracking them? AIS web or SSB contact?

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He is now crossing a windless trough (right under the weak low) and wind speeds the next 24 hrs are suppose to be in the 0-5kt range. Wind returning later tomorrow afternoon.

 

They are now doing speed 6.5kts and course about 125T - motoring. Good plan to get further east for when the wind rebuilds. The 16th, 17th and 18th are now all supposed to be 10-15kts, from south of east on the 17th and 18th.

 

So far, the forecast on departure was decent in it's very big picture (eg stay a little east of the GC route, the stronger winds that they had a couple days ago, that nothing serious on the horizon, the possibility of this weak low developing), but the specific sailing/wind details (wind strengths and directions) even 24hr out have generally been pretty lousy - except for the that one band of stronger winds which was forecast quite accurately. You definitely would not have wanted to go off on a flyer chasing some winds in the 3 day forecast.

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Radio conditions were pretty bad tonight for that distance. I never did hear BJ and really only one boat was readable more than 50% of the time. Apparently light air and fuel issues were the main topics of discussion and Goldilocks is having some fuel problem but I couldn't get exactly what it was.

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anyone else think this is cool as hell? I wonder if B.J. knows about our voyeurism. :)

 

Yep, I do. It really makes me want to get out there.

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anyone else think this is cool as hell? I wonder if B.J. knows about our voyeurism. :)

 

 

Yep, I do. It really makes me want to get out there.

 

 

zactly! And doesn't it give you peace of mind knowing that all of CA is watching?

 

just make sure you keep blinds on the portlights.

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I didn't here BJ but I did here some others.

Apparently they have a good chance of seeing some squalls tonight.

8 MHz was a little better, but still pretty weak for most of the boats.

 

yes, lots of atmospheric energy out there (dark orange in the pic).. I hope the fleet managed to get east enough to have decent angles.

 

post-8534-0-22085400-1353164650_thumb.jpg

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Most of the fleet are out on 65W heading south, except for some later starters. For those who haven't found the link you can see the boats in the Salty Dawg who have spot trackers at: http://www.hawketracking.org/saltydawg/files/trackinglarge.htm

 

We were/are in the Salty Dawg but our destination was the Bahamas so we missed the bounciest stuff they got earlier in the week. We've been relaxing here for the last couple of days watching our friends work their way south. Looks like they'll be on a close reach opening up to a reach for the next couple of days till they get there.

 

Mark.

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From BJ:

-----------------------------------

 

Arriving West End Soper's hole, ETA 8-10 pm tonigt. We might bail and stand off if we don't like the approach after dark or head to Virgin Gorda.

-----

At 11/17/2012 15:19 (utc) our position was 19°27.98'N 065°06.42'W

-----------------------------------

 

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Most of the fleet are out on 65W heading south, except for some later starters. For those who haven't found the link you can see the boats in the Salty Dawg who have spot trackers at: http://www.hawketrac...ackinglarge.htm

 

We were/are in the Salty Dawg but our destination was the Bahamas so we missed the bounciest stuff they got earlier in the week. We've been relaxing here for the last couple of days watching our friends work their way south. Looks like they'll be on a close reach opening up to a reach for the next couple of days till they get there.

 

Mark.

 

Neat!

 

Thanks for sharing.

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----------------------------

Hove to off Jost van Dyke

 

Waiting for daylight. We decided not to break our "Don't ever enter an unfamiliar harbor on a fucking pitch black night" rule. Never mind a passage through some islands no one had the courtesy to put any lights on...I don't care WHAT the radar says they look RIGHT FREAKING THERE!

 

We should be dropping anchor and clearing customs first thing in the morning.

-----

At 11/18/2012 00:57 (utc) our position was 18°31.81'N 064°

----------------------------

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I hope BJ knows he can clear into Jost van Dyke. It's both closer, and not hard at night with radar.

-----------------------------

 

I know we can clear there. IT sounds like there's a bunch of new mornings there and the anchorage still isn't easy.

 

Wasn't relishing battling the charter boats coming in to Foxy's on a Saturday for space in the dark!

 

We need to track down some biocide cleaner for the water maker that I suspect I've a better chance of finding on Tortola, and we want to look into a park mooring permit which I think we need to go to Road Town to get.

-----

At 11/18/2012 02:36 (utc) our position was 18°34.47'N 064°50.77'W

----------------------------

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Now drinking a painkiller at Pussers...

 

Congrats also.

 

From a distance it looked like a well executed passage.

 

Anything break?

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From the spot track, looks like it was 1363nm, for an average speed of 6.8kts (excluding the last light hove-to).

 

I would rate the starting weather forecast about a B (you had less wind than the starting forecast for the start and the end, but it was not too bad in general system development).

 

Sounds like it was an A on fish catching.

 

Now it's time to get a tan and bleach out your hair with salt water!

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Now drinking a painkiller at Pussers...

 

Congrats also.

 

From a distance it looked like a well executed passage.

 

Anything break?

 

No major breakage. We discovered a few unfortunate things, like the guys I PAID to winterize last winter then recommission my watermaker this spring screwed it up and didn't flush things out, so when we finally went to use it, it stinks. Needs to get a biocide cleaning. Should have run it earlier instead of kept it in maintenance mode.

 

Lost a turnbuckle from a lifeline over board, had to jury rig. Flogged the bottom batten out of the stay sail while headed up reefing the main. Minor stuff.

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From the spot track, looks like it was 1363nm, for an average speed of 6.8kts (excluding the last light hove-to).

 

I would rate the starting weather forecast about a B (you had less wind than the starting forecast for the start and the end, but it was not too bad in general system development).

 

Sounds like it was an A on fish catching.

 

Now it's time to get a tan and bleach out your hair with salt water!

 

My log from Maxsea shows just over 1400 NM, but that's every hour. I didn't use a spot track, I used position reporting from Winlink that I e-mailed to Shiptrak, Yotreps, and the rally tracking people.

 

Fish catching was really easy, I was surprised. First day in the gulf stream I dragged a lure for an hour or two and nothing. Next AM out of the stream I took the same lure and rigged a rubber tail on it in the morning. Two small jacks on (we didn't keep) before I even got to breakfast. First Mahi hit while I was eating my bowl of cereal. Before noon we had enough Mahi fillets in the fridge so that we didn't want to fuss with fishing any more and pulled the line. It roughed up that night so we froze those fillets, and fished more a when it calmed a couple of days later. One monster Mahi hit a different lure I was running deeper but he threw the hook in a spectacular jump. More Jacks and another Mahi the next day...really not a problem catching enough to eat what we wanted and store some.

 

I wasn't wild about reaching off SW for comfort, but the night before no one got a lot of sleep when we pressed harder and we all needed the rest - we all were much sharper as a result.

 

I don't think we played the stream right. We were supposed to enter it where it was bending East and flowing East. We initially got into it and were making 10+ over the bottom but quickly lost both the wind and the big boost in current. Rather than motor North to tran and find the current again we peeled off South.

 

In retrospect I would have worked MUCH more East. I didn't appreciate what a monumental pain in the read the Trades could be from the SE when we weren't past 65W yet. Had we been more East, assuming the same shifts in wind on the last two days we could have fetched Jost Van Dyke yesterday in daylight.

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I can catch fish no problem. I hate killing them. I suspect hunger will make that choice easy.

 

Mahi are stunningly gorgeous as you reel them in. Within minutes their beauty fades and you remember just how tasty they are.

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He is using Winlink AFAIK. I'll miss the net tonight more than likely but will try the nets again Friday.

Man, that's cool that they supplement their food by fishing. I wish I knew how to fish worth a damn. I'll be dead when I run out of MRE's once the zombies come. :(

 

Estar, How are you tracking them? AIS web or SSB contact?

 

Yah, Winlink with the Pactorbator. Shhh.

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I wasn't wild about reaching off SW for comfort, but the night before no one got a lot of sleep when we pressed harder and we all needed the rest - we all were much sharper as a result.

 

Agreed that fatigue reduction is a priority. We would probably have slowed down a bit, but still kept the course high.

 

Close reaching in 30kts sustained (or frequently squally) for short periods we do with a double reef and big staysail, but if it goes on for any length of time we drop the main and often have just our big staysail up (or perhaps with the trysail if we need just a bit more power). We do 6-7kts comfortably with that, the autopilot can steer thru any squalls, and we can take squalls up to 50 without having to do anything more to the sails (have to go to the storm jib above that). We only push in those sorts of conditions if there is some sort of weather we are trying to catch or avoid.

 

In retrospect I would have worked MUCH more East. I didn't appreciate what a monumental pain in the read the Trades could be from the SE when we weren't past 65W yet.

 

When you left, the long range forecast was indicating NE winds on your arrival, and a rumb line sort of route would have been good if that had held. But a couple days in the forecast for that low above the BVI firmed up and sucked the winds to SE and then you really needed to push east.

 

The trades are a force to be reckoned with because they drive waves over such a long fetch. We always put more angle in the bag than 'necessary' when approaching the trades 'just in case' and we are always pleased to have done so.

 

I don't think we played the stream right.

 

It look like you nailed a warm eddy just perfectly on the current gribs, but they are not completely reliable, you probably know better from having actually been there :)

 

In any case . . . enjoy the rum, remember the lessons learned and forget the uncomfortable parts. It's said that a short memory (for the less good parts) is an essential part of the make-up of successful blue water sailing.

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Awesome.

Have at it and have fun.

 

My wife will never go for it, so I'll have to live vicariously.

She is a bigger dream come true for me than cruising so I have that going.

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I can't fish either.

 

Went to the Boundary Waters. Canoed to a spot where one of the regulars claimed you can practically reach down and pick the fish up. ANYONE can catch fish there, I was informed.

 

Anyone except me.

You just have to get the line out there, then the fish come on. Did a little experimenting - too close to the boat = nothing; I suspect this might be a lot of folks problems. Two waves back seemed pretty productive, I was typically trailing 3-4 boat lengths back or more though having that much line out is a PITA if you need to pull a piece of seaweed off.

 

IMG_1748.JPG

 

IMG_1722.JPG

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Congrats!

Great passage.

It was fun sort of hearing you all on the SSB. With the noise on my end and the distance when I finally was able to listen on 4 megs it was kind of hit and miss. Maybe 50% readable. Whatever became of Goldilocks and their fuel issue?

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Congrats!

Great passage.

It was fun sort of hearing you all on the SSB. With the noise on my end and the distance when I finally was able to listen on 4 megs it was kind of hit and miss. Maybe 50% readable. Whatever became of Goldilocks and their fuel issue?

I'm not sure what happened, we sort of stopped checking in once we got here. A number of the slower boats had fuel issues as the wind seriously died and/or went South on them.

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B.J. one question I've been begging to ask, But I've waited till you were settled a bit.

How did family life cope with the constant sailing, watch keeping and mum and dad down on sleep because thay are looking after a boat sailing 24-7 while still having to put meals on the table 3 times a day, doing school work etc etc.

 

Just keen on hearing about the family side of the trip.

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Have you got itchy feet FD :)

 

I love the idea of cruising, but have put it to towing and exploring. As with any travelling you need cash, there is only so much you can see from a marina

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B.J. one question I've been begging to ask, But I've waited till you were settled a bit.

How did family life cope with the constant sailing, watch keeping and mum and dad down on sleep because thay are looking after a boat sailing 24-7 while still having to put meals on the table 3 times a day, doing school work etc etc.

 

Just keen on hearing about the family side of the trip.

 

Watchstanding wasn't a real problem. My 15 year old son stood the 8-11, my wife and I split up 11-3 & 3-7, and we started dragging my 12 year old daughter out of bed to relieve the 3-7 watch stander. During the day we did catch as can, with adults napping as they saw fit.

 

We didn't do school under way. We didn't plan to, and when we tried it didn't work to well. Focusing on the books tended to affect how people felt...

 

Breakfasts we typically did on your own when ready grab a bowl of cereal, meal shake, whatever you wanted. Though a couple of mornings we did a more organized breakfast like pancakes or something. Lunches were similar - we didn't do a sit down so much as a "Hey I'm making sandwiches anyone want one" sort of thing. Dinners we did as many pre-prepped as we could, casseroles, stews and the like. One night we had fresh pan fried Mahi...

 

Over all the kids did fine, they were good and helpful crew and there was no whining.

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B.J. one question I've been begging to ask, But I've waited till you were settled a bit.

How did family life cope with the constant sailing, watch keeping and mum and dad down on sleep because thay are looking after a boat sailing 24-7 while still having to put meals on the table 3 times a day, doing school work etc etc.

 

Just keen on hearing about the family side of the trip.

 

Watchstanding wasn't a real problem. My 15 year old son stood the 8-11, my wife and I split up 11-3 & 3-7, and we started dragging my 12 year old daughter out of bed to relieve the 3-7 watch stander. During the day we did catch as can, with adults napping as they saw fit.

 

We didn't do school under way. We didn't plan to, and when we tried it didn't work to well. Focusing on the books tended to affect how people felt...

 

Breakfasts we typically did on your own when ready grab a bowl of cereal, meal shake, whatever you wanted. Though a couple of mornings we did a more organized breakfast like pancakes or something. Lunches were similar - we didn't do a sit down so much as a "Hey I'm making sandwiches anyone want one" sort of thing. Dinners we did as many pre-prepped as we could, casseroles, stews and the like. One night we had fresh pan fried Mahi...

 

Over all the kids did fine, they were good and helpful crew and there was no whining.

 

From meeting them your kids seem great, BJ. And you guys seem like great parents.

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Thanks for the details, BJ. Gives me some hope I'll be able to take the boys out on long trips in coming years :)

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