May 18, 2010

Passage Summary

The Facts
2,900 km in 420 hours, or 6.9 knots. 40 hours motoring and 380 hours under sail. Wind speeds averaged greater than 15 knots and seas about 7 feet. Highest wind was 33 knots sustained and seas maximum was 15 feet for about 6 hours. Lowest winds were 3 knots and seas were nearly flat.

The Expectations
The pilot charts show a wind average of 12 knots and 5.2 foot seas on this passage. A multitude of cruising guides suggest that while the longest passage most people undertake, it is also one of the most comfortable. We were expecting to have a "life" while on passage, planning home schooling, projects etc. We did none of that, we simply existed. We also thought the passage would take 25 days, so there is the upside of higher winds and seas. Overall, this expectation gap weighed heavily on moral.

The Kids
While Rae and I huddled in our bunks or in the cockpit, the kids had the run of the boat. They were never seasick, never complained about being out there so long (Jake wants to go on a longer passage in fact). They built forts, watched lots of movies and were all in all quite happy and content.

The Dreams
About one week into the passage I could not stop having dreams about being on land. I would always wake up at the same moment in the dream, at the point when whoever I was speaking to would ask "where did you leave the boat?", which of course immediately confused me because I could not leave the boat anywhere for many many more days. I always woke up very confused and disoriented.

The Watch Schedule
Many cruisers complain that the watch schedule is too draining and ultimately leads to sleep deprivation. Rae and I did not have any issues with this and felt rested nearly every day. The one exception was when we had lost of squalls one night and both of us were awake to manage sail changes.

After being in the Marqueses for one day, the answer to the question "would you do it again?" has already changed from Hell No!, to Ya Probably. It is pretty darn cool here.

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Anonymous said...


geranio said...

I have been following you day by day in May, I am so happy for you finally in harbour... preparing your next adventure!

DSSV said...

Awsome speed fora 40' boat. I guess fishing ended when you spooled out. Right? Where next ?

Geoff and Pat Craigen said...

We guess it's true then - passage making is like childbirth. During the event, you question your decision to do it in the first place, but you suck it up and get through it. And then magic - the results are worth it. And, you do it again. Looking forward to pictures.
Pat and Geoff