Blue Moon Fans:
Have you seen the new spinnaker yet? I am offering $200 via Venmo to anyone who can correctly guess theme of the Spinnaker!
Crew members not eligible.
Post your guesses via comments in the blog!
Sailing downwind at about 7 knots in 10-12 knots of breeze. The first reveal of the new spinnaker, designed by Nicole Valentine.
We have had several days in the beginning of the race with 20-40 knot winds and seas that tower over the boat and cover the deck with water and return again moments later. Waves knock the boat side to side up and down without prediction making the most basic movements of walking, getting a drink or sitting down in an expected lactation an arduous task. Holding yourself up is a constant battle. I have been asked what meals can be prepared and what do we eat in these conditions? I have asked Tim to put together in writing an example of the basic sustenance we must consume to keep our bodies energized and our minds focused. Many crews eat dried MREs or other such basic calorie Madden consumables to keep going. Marye Ellen and Tim have provisioned SV Blue Moon to take into account the resources we have onboard and the environment we must prepare meals in to maintain our strength. The exact meals that we have prepared and eaten onboard since our departure are listed below so
you can get an idea of the desolate environment we must cope with to execute such an endeavor.
Hardship rations on the passage to Kaneohe:
Morning tea (at the start line)
Pirates rum and ginger cake a la Sara
Virginia ham and pepper jack cheese sandwiches with salad and grey poupon
Afternoon tea of rum cake with lavazza Oro latte or twinings Earl grey tea on the fan tail
Spring vegetable pasta bake a la Marye Ellen
Granola with keefir
Oranges apples bananas
Virginia ham and pepper jack cheese sandwiches with salad and grey poupon
Earl grey with Scottish butter shortbread
Lasagna (a la Sara) with Niman ranch beef and Marin cheese company ricotta
with green beans and garlic bread.
Granola with keefir
Salmon and cheese sandwiches with tomatoes and lettuce with capers and fresh squeezed lemon.
Baked turkey meatloaf (a la Marye Ellen)with sea infused green beans and garlic bread.
pancakes and maple syrup
Rum cake with Earl grey tea
Sunflower seeded sandwiches with Virginia ham and cheese filling
Fresh line caught SV Blue Moon Sebastiens BBQ Grilled Blue fin tuna fillets (1lb each) in lemon butter basted in white Bordeaux with sea water infused carrots green beans and rice with quinoa.
From scratch SV Blue Moon boat made Bread and butter pudding with warm maple syrup
Burritos with hot turkey meatloaf, pepper jack, salad, salsa, black beans and picked peppers
Prime beef bourginon with pasta spirals and from scratch SV Blue Moon boat made braided wholemeal bread (recipe texted from San Francisco and converted from lbs and oz to cups while underway) with Grey Poupon paired with Ojai sourced Viano Vineyards Zinfandel.
Saltines for those that may or may not have needed them, and extra portions for those that didn’t.
We buried a drone at sea. 2 bells. Drone FH 1 was buried at sea when the auto pilot mode became very confused. He was almost saved but missed the grasp of a hand by millimeters.
Three fish were snagged and one as caught and BBQ'd. Larry and Russ enjoyed sashimi right after the Blue Fin Tuna was hauled onboard and the whole crew enjoyed BBQ'd tuna. A very fresh and filling meal.
Full solar power and a sunny day gave us nearly 2kwh today and enough energy to run all boat systems, make water, and store energy in the batteries. The increased temperature of the water, 70 degrees f, increases salinity and decreases our water making efficiency from 8 gallons per hour heater day to 6 gph today. We are still making plenty of water though. We did run the engine to charge batteries that were depleted from the prior days without full solar.
Tim baking all day, bread, baked bread pudding, sandwiches, pancakes.... The rest of the crew were singing and playing ukeleles.
Got Jenny up!
Jenny has been pulled from the sail locker and is the driving force behind our performance in these conditions.
The race fleet is bifurcated with some boats choosing to go a southerly route and some choosing a northerly route. We chose North and made good time. We made a decision to move a little South and take advantage of a unique weather phenomenon I identified the other day. We made our move to the South during the night in stealth mode and enjoyed strong performance in favorable seas and good winds.
Day 3 gave us some time early in the day to catch up on a few things, then became more challenging as the evening wore on. We were able get the Bimini solar array back online due to Larry's repair all strategy - poor epoxy all over it. The strategy, deployed with as much care as can be for the situation at hand and out at sea, worked fairly well as we were able to remove the protective canvass and allow all four so late panels to contribute the our energy needs. As a result we were able to charge the batteries, and make about 50 gal of fresh water from sea water. The energy stored in the batteries also got us easily through the night's every requirements. I am back online.
We found the carrots.
Bigger swells and wind waves.
We made water with the added solar power from the bimini array.
We are beyond satellite tv reception for Directv. :)
We did snag a fish but it pull off The hook as Seb was attempting to real it in. The one that got away!
The day started with steep wind waves and rolling swells combined to make 10 - 14ft seas along with 20-30kt winds. #1 sail, Lucile, is still performing excellently in the wind conditions, 20-40 kts. Its an excellent sail from Quantum sails and is perfect for these conditions powering us to over 10kts of speed while not needing to be rested in winds over 40 kts. A great sail design.
We were able to dry out a bit and do some washing and drying of towels and gear until about mid afternoon when the Sky's became cloudy again, winds kicked up and the swells became much steeper with large developed swells at short intervals, with wind waves on top. No stars visible, wind howling, waves pushing the boat around and crashing over the deck.
It will be a long night.
No sightings of plastic or trash.
Although early morning weather was tougher than day 1, by midday the weather settled a bit with only occasional gusts or heavy waves. The weather warmed a little and the water temperature was 64°F, up from 61°F in the San Francisco Bay. We still have up sail #1 and Jenny is safely stowed in the sail locker.
We are traveling at 8-9 knots.
Winds 16-22 knots.
Seas 4-6 foot swells and 4-8 foot wind waves.
Communications over satellite were challenging today, receiving email and weather files proved problematic. A streamlined request routine and schedule should help.
Tim and Larry attempted a temporary repair on the Bimini in hopes of returning to full solar power tomorrow once the epoxy dries.
We have now over taken Green Buffalo.
We have not seen any trash or plastic as of yet. We will cross into the Great Pacific Garbage Patch boundary tomorrow which is roughly 500 nautical miles west of the Golden Gate.
The outer spiral arm of the Milky Way was clearly and brightly visible.
The stars were so bright it was difficult to see some of the common ones that you know. Venus was clear to the southwest, and Mars was visible as it rose just before the crescent moon.
We have decided there is a Phantom-Switcher-Offer. Every time I go to use a pump or other equipment, it has been shut off at the power panel. No one will fess up as to who is messing with me. I think it’s Tim, and I’ll get even with him.
The batteries are running a bit low having just one solar array. The single array is producing electricity nicely and keeps up with our consumption during the day. However, we need to build up extra power on the batteries to get us through the night, and we need to make water as our #1 tank is running low. Making water consumes a lot of battery power.
We had a good start. Larry’s strategy was good. Got all the way to the front of the start line toward sim land marks we had measured previously, then tacked right and headed for the north tower of the GGB. WE HIT 10 knots of boat speed as we crossed the start line. We passed most of the boats in our class before going under the GGB.
Our beautiful flag line became tangled in the back stays. With some effort we corrected this.
We changed head sails about 20 miles out as the wind increased that cost us some time. We have now caught with the fleet and are over taking other boats
Wind 30 kts
Seas 6 ft swells at 15 sec, 4ft wind waves, constantly :)
The starboard Bimini solar panel fell prey to the wind, ripping the Bimini. We covered it all with canvass to shelter from the wind. Solar is compromised and the Bimini will be in shreds by Hawaii.
When we changed sails outside the gate we put the big Genoa, 135% #3 head-sale which I affectionately call Jenny, lashed to the side rail on the port deck. This is a common practice providing for quicker and easier sales changes when conditions allow. I had the 20:00 - 00:00 watch and at about 22:00 noticed that Jenny was being grabbed by the sea and being pulled in. Marye Ellen was on helm and I went forward to gather Jenny back on deck and lash her down. Wave after wave crashed over the deck as I laid there with one hand around Jenny and the other hand holing on the chainplates of the shrouds. Each time a wave came over it would lift Jenny enough for me to gather more sail on deck. Waves were covering me completely burying me; they were also lifting Jenny. As a particularly large wave hit and covered the deck and me, my only thought was, “Damn I love this!” I felt great. But Jenny was too full over water to bring onboard myself and I was exhausted. Marye Ellen woke up Tim and Seb. We devised a plan to gather Jenny in her sail bag from the aft, or clew, and stuff her in her bag releasing only one sail tie at a time until Jenny was safely in her bag and in the sail locker. This worked, and after time we had her safely stowed.
I will provide candid, very candid, reviews of each product I review. I want products I use to work correctly, be at least somewhat intuitive, and provide value to the task. .
I will tell you how I used them, if I needed support from the manufacturers and how they responded, and if they worked for me in a practical real world environment and use case. This should be fun!
Sailing Vessel (SV) Blue Moon departs for Kaneohe Bay, Oahu, Hi from San Francisco on July 9th, 2018.
We have been working hard for several months to prepare and train for this voyage through the Great Pacific Garbage Patch and to Hawaii. I'll be posting updates prior to departure and throughout our voyage so you can keep track of our adventure!