Thursday, October 20, 2016
The Vendée Globe is still the only non-stop solo round the world race without assistance. The event was created in the spirit of the Golden Globe, which was in 1968 the first non-stop solo round the world race via the three capes (Good Hope, Leeuwin and the Horn). Out of the nine pioneers, who set sail in 1968, only one made it back to Falmouth on 6th April 1969 after 313 days at sea, the British sailor, Robin Knox-Johnston. Sir Robin Knox-Johnston thus became the first sailor to sail alone around the world without stopping…
Twenty years later, the French sailor Philippe Jeantot, following on from his two wins in the BOC Challenge (the solo round the world race with stopovers), came up with the idea of a new solo round the world race, but this time a non-stop race. The Globe Challenge was born, and a few editions later this became the Vendée Globe. On 26th November 1989, thirteen sailors set off in this first edition, which would last more than three months. Only seven made it back to les Sables d’Olonne.
Since then, the first seven editions of what the public refers to as the Everest of the seas, have enabled 138 sailors to line up at the start of the Vendée Globe, while only 71 have managed to cross the finishing line. This figure alone expresses the huge difficulty of this global event, where sailors face icy cold conditions, mountainous waves and leaden skies in the Southern Ocean. The Vendée Globe is above all a voyage to the ends of the sea and deep down into the sailor’s soul. It has been won by some of the greatest names in sailing: Titouan Lamazou, Alain Gautier, Christophe Auguin, Vincent Riou and François Gabart. Only one sailor has won it twice: Michel Desjoyeaux, in 2001 and 2009. The race record is held by François Gabart with a time of 78 days.
The eighth Vendée Globe will set sail from les Sables d’Olonne on Sunday 6th November 2016.
Cool photo of the day!
Wednesday, October 19, 2016
Getting ready to Haha! The event is a 750 mile rally from San Diego to Cabo San Lucas. We have two stop overs in small bays along the way with the highlight being the beach parties which are always epic. More beach parties when we arrive in Cabo. This year we have a big fleet with over 170 boats and 600 friendly folks. It's going to be an awesome trip and I will be sharing my log on this blog once the Haha is completed. Can't wait to get out on the Pacific once more! We depart in 10 days.
Tuesday, October 18, 2016
My buddy Chris will be joining me for the Haha this year. Last year he could not find a boat. I told him to head to the dock on the day of departure. Sure enough, Heidi felt sorry for him and even though her small boat was full, she took him along. He ended up having a blast! Should be a great trip. We depart on Halloween.
Sunday, October 16, 2016
Mike, Trevor and I set out in to the storm at 9am on Saturday. The winds were from the south so as soon as we got out of the harbor, we set sail thru the marked channel. Once clear of the markers, I headed below to make some pancakes for the crew. Blackberry and banana. We were on a course for the north tower of the Golden Gate. As we rounded Angel, the wind direction changed to a NW wind. Odd. Might be the influence of the island? Anywho, we followed it as we had some time and the winds were nice at about 12-14. Soon we headed for Clipper Cove. There was a music fest going on and we hoped to anchor nearby. As soon as we started heading south, the wind direction went to south again and we were fighting a 20 knot breeze with gusts to 30 knots. The boat was on her side several times. I decided we could not make it so we steer away on a broad reach. I decided to take down the main and try jib only. We were making headway but noticed a rip in the jib. We are in the process of replacing our 10 year old jib but it will not arrive for several weeks. The winds continued to build and so with the rip, we headed back to the slip at about 1:30. So glad we headed out early to catch some great sailing in the storm.
Saturday, October 15, 2016
Trails End from Randy Halverson on Vimeo.
We have a very deep low approaching today that will bring rain and windy weather. Rain this afternoon, when is the question. We are heading out early to hopefully miss the wet stuff. Here is the report from my weather/wind guru:
A powerful Pacific Low Pressure center tracks toward the Northern California border overnight then lifts northward. As it does it deepens and intensifies. The main energy of this storm heads quickly toward Washington State while the tail end works it way more slowly down the California coastline tomorrow. Another round of rainfall with areas of potentially heavy rain is brought in with the system. Morning winds will be light but will ramp up by midmorning for Bodega and by noon for the Central and East Bay. The jet stream winds will be over 100 knots by tomorrow afternoon and 80 knots at 18,000 feet, so there is lots of energy to work with. So though we won't see anywhere near the strength of what this storm will do for Washington there will be the potential for gusts into the 30s. So stay safe if you are out on the water.
Central Bay: Crissy and TI rising to the low 20s by early afternoon with gusty mid 20s possible before sundown.
We are also hoping to stop by the Treasure Island Music Fest and anchor near the Bridge Stage and check out a band or two.
This is from SAIL magazine:
There are several ways to get a person back on board. While they differ in their steps and approach, they all have a few things in common. The first thing that should happen is that the crew is made aware of the situation by someone hailing, "Man overboard." Immediately after that at least one person on the boat should take over as the spotter. This person does nothing else during the recovery other than point at the crewmember in the water. Other crewmembers on the boat should immediately throw any available flotation at the victim as well as activate a Man-Overboard Module, if the boat is equipped with one, and activate the crewmember overboard button on the GPS. A calm, level-headed approach to recovery is always better than something that resembles a fire drill, and the more you practice, the better you will get.
The figure eight method
1. Regardless of which point of sail you are on when a crewmember falls overboard, the figure eight method starts with yelling "Man overboard," throwing flotation devices and appointing a spotter.
2. The helmsman should immediately either head up or bear away (depending on which point of sail the boat is on) to a beam reach.
3. Sail six to eight boatlengths on a beam reach.
4. Tack and immediately bear away from the wind to a broad reach, but only briefly until you cross your wake.
5. Head up to a close reach, ease the sheets and pick the victim up on the leeward side with speed between 1 and 2 knots and sails luffing.
Pros: The figure eight method is a classic approach often taught to beginning sailors on smaller vessels. Since it does not require a jibe, this method eliminates the potential danger of an uncontrolled boom flying across the cockpit and banging somebody in the head or damaging the rigging.
Cons: The biggest concern is the requirement of heading six to eight boatlengths away from the victim before returning. Considering the only thing the spotter might see is the victim's head in the water, unless the victim is waving, it would be easy to lose sight of them at such distances, especially in rougher conditions or when sailing offshore.
There are other things that can go wrong with the execution of the figure eight method. Often the helmsperson will not immediately head up or bear away to a beam reach or won't remain on the beam reach long enough, either of which will throw the whole thing off. They might otherwise stay on a broad reach for too long, wind up too far downwind of the victim, and then have to tack once or more to get back. Even when accomplished flawlessly, retrieving the victim from the water at the prescribed speed of between one and two knots is a challenge. Practicing with a buoy is one thing; a real person is quite another. If the victim in the water is unconscious, this drawback alone could be fatal.