San Francisco Bay

Idefix: 10,000 Miles And Counting…

Photo Credit: Adrian JohnsonReally enjoying the continued adventures of the mighty Idefix…sailed by my friend and fellow buglighter Adrian Johnson. After completing the most recent Singlehanded Transpac race 2012 to Hawaii…Idefix set off from Oahu with crew bound for OZ! Idefix is most likely the first Olson 30 to continue on from Hawaii and most definitely the first to cross the equator? Lots of first with this voyage! The above picture is Idefix anchored in the Fanning Island Lagoon. Go Idefix Go!

Just Like Yesterday

It is hard to imagine that 2 years have already zipped by since the last running of the SHTP in 2010. I remember the moments following the taking of this particular picture with such clarity; the theme of what would be the next few days aboard my little blue ship was WET, COLD, and a chilling dampness that would last well into the first week of the trip. Although uncomfortable at times…I had a blast! Since completing my journey in Hanalei, selling my boat in Hawaii, and returning to San Francisco; I have been so focused on the buglight beacon that will soon depart again in a little under 2 months time. Unfortunately, the 2012 SHTP is not in the cards for me this year but I am looking forward to following the race and supporting the fleet along the way. Stay tuned for more Oceanslogic adventures in the very near future…

What worked and what didn’t work…

What did and didn’t work aboard s/v Blue Moon International Folkboat:

What did work

*Twin headsails made by Lee Sails. Once we got to the “almost trades”…these Twins worked beautifully. And once I got used to the set up…I ended up taking the “Roper approach” and flying the twins with Main…with the windward twin on a pole and the leward twin trimmed to a close reach…

*My second hand drifter for the light air conditions. Being very much waterline challenged in the light stuff (19 feet for the Folkboat)…the drifter helped push us along. I will definitely have a drifter made for the next race.

*UK Halsey Mainsail w/ three reefs worked great. Well built…very solid construction…and it seemed to really put the turbo in the Turboed folkboat

*Forespar single burner gimbaled stove worked very well in a variety of sea conditions…Only used two green propane canisters for the trip over..very efficient.

*NASA Marine stand alone AIS unit: worth its weight in GOLD. I had this running 24/7 for the first week of the race…draws very little energy and really allows you to sleep a bit better 

*GPS NavX setup on my 12″ G4 Laptop worked well…but due to how wet everything became down below…I really ended up using my little handheld Garmin GPS 60 & chart for the majority of the race.

*Iridium Sat Phone worked very well…Long battery life….Never had an issue with reception…dropping calls..ect.

What didn’t work or What I wished I had

*A good solid Autopilot–For this race I now believe it is a must. I brought along an old AH800 tiller pilot that worked in some situations but with any bumpy sea state…it did not like it! So I would install the nicest Autopilot I can afford for the next time.

*Not foreseeing just how wet things would get on my little Folkboat…next time around I would do a better job of having everything I don’t want to get wet in Plastic bags…dry bags…etc. After the first 3-4 days of the race…my entire boat from forepeak to quarter berths was soaking wet…and once we started getting into warmer climates…everything had been wet for soo long that things started to GROW on my books, charts, clothes, etc. Keeping things dry is KEY!

*Extra pairs of Foul Weather Gear (perhaps even three sets!) My gear got soaking wet early and it would have been nice to have a fresh set waiting while my other set dried…And remember to always put your jacket over the bibs…in one of my exhausted states early on in the race…I mistakenly had my bibs over my Jacket…and water finds its way into your BIBS real easy with this scenario 

*Wind Instruments would have been nice for all the downwind work of this trip…Going DDW…it would be nice to only have to look forward as opposed to up all the time 

All in all..I was very pleased with Blue Moon’s preparation…we didn’t have anything major break…and the boat actually looked good once we reach Hanalei…Oh Hanalei 

More to come…

My Old Pilot Gets A New Home

My Old Windpilot's New Home

My Old Windpilot's New Home

Having installed my new Pacific Light Windpilot on Blue Moon it was time to find my old Windpilot a new home. It was only fitting that after a few hours up on Craigslist a fellow International Folkboat owner called and the deal was done. Springbok is the name of the boat and it is one nice looking IF. Springbok currently resides on the East Coast…and the owner plans on setting off and exploring the East Coast early next year.

Boat work is slowing down and we are starting to focus on provisioning Blue Moon for this adventure. I am trying my best to focus the bulk of the weight on Blue Moon’s centerline…pretty much right under the mast. It seems to be working out.  Here is a shot of some provisioning madness:

Visions Of Provisions

Visions Of Provisions

And finally…There are certain subtle signs here in Sausalito that let me know the “Summer” is upon on us. One of the indicators is the thick blanket of fog that slowly slides its way over the Marin Headlands during the early to mid afternoon hours. Another would be the words “Small Craft Advisory” permeating the daily NOAA weather reports. The final and most important indicator is that my Folkboat friend Adam is back on the Bay sailing his International Folkboat “Nemo” which he has owned SINCE NEW!  Here is a shot of Adam on his way home from a “small craft advisory” day on the Bay…

The Folkboat Whisperer

The Folkboat Whisperer

I’m hauling Blue Moon this Friday. Lots to do before then…but we are close….very close…