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Sea adventures with D & D
Sunset
D & D
07/13/2012, Green Monarchs, Lake Pend O'Relle

Recent Sunset!

July on Lake Pend O'Reille
D & D
07/13/2012, Sandpoint, Id

Ah, the joy of sailing! This lake is so beautiful and so many different aspects define it, from small, deep coves, to high cliffs. We sail as often as the winds allow! Last week, we left on the sailboat for 4 days, and, thanks to the Marine management of the lake, we now have some great buoys to hook onto, assuring a safe night's sleep in a deep anchorage along different bays in the lake. One of the afternoon, we had added excitement as a windstorm, not expected according to the weather report, hit us in the middle of the lake, with wind clocked at 38 miles/hr (Navy buoy). We quickly dropped all sails, donned our life jackets, started the motor and steered into the waves for the next hour, until we safely were attached to a mooring ball on the Green Monarchs.
Our lifestyle on the boat? Similar to Mexico - swim, simple meals outside in the cockpit, enjoy the sunset, a game of cards, a good sleep! love the life!

Sailing On Lake Pend'Oreille 2
Donna and Darryl
03/30/2012, North Idaho

Picture is of us sailing last summer; beautiful mountains, great water!

Sailing On Lake Pend'Oreille
Donna and Darryl
03/30/2012, North Idaho

Winter 2012
It's been a year since we experienced the encounter with the whale as we were entering Tennacatita Bay to anchor for the evening.
Three months following the incident, our beloved "Luffin It" was turned over to our insurance company as the survey confirmed it was a total loss. We both talk about our experiences with nothing but happy memories only regretting the early curtailment our Mexican sailing.
We returned home mid March of 2011 and made two purchases, Hobie kayaks for each of us and a 1988 Catalina 30 sailboat, North Star. Since we live on Lake Pend Oreille, we were able to drop a 3000 pound anchor out in front of our home we are able to keep North Star there Spring, summer and Fall. We have found that it's best to put her away in our dock slip across the lake over winter and during our absences. This worked out very well last summer, as we were able to take advantage of every little burst of wind and sail for an hour or for a day, as we were only minutes away from having "sails up." Note the picture taken at anchor.
We have found a great deal of joy in sailing on this lake; it has many coves and inlets where we can drop an anchor, swim, barbeque, dinghy into a beach and hike or pull up to a restaurant dock and have dinner. We believe that this has helped us move on and adjust from our experiences in Mexico.
A word about Lake Pend O'Reille - It's a beautiful 42 mile long lake, as wide as 3 miles in places, and a very deep lake, over 1200 ft in places, which adds some challenge to anchoring out. It is surrounded by mountains, and you can sometimes see mountain goats climbing around the mountain peaks. The Navy tests prototype submarines in the southern end of the lake, though we wouldn't know it if they didn't mention it. The fishing is good. . . and we carry our fishing poles as we sail, though usually waiting for our anchorage to fish. While it is a big lake, we are fortunate that it's not a very busy lake, so the sailing is not restrictive, except for the winds, which do tend to swirl around at times.

Lessons Learned - Whale
D & D
03/21/2011, Home

We are publishing these thoughts about what we've learned from the experience as well as input from others:
1. Discus and plan for the unexpected to happen. One of the things that helped us, I believe, was that we both read the long article in Latitude 38 on the J-40 boat that was struck by a whale and went down in less than 45 minutes. After we read it, we sat down and mapped out a plan of what we would do in the event of an emergency. I believe that helped us to react swiftly.
2. Life Jackets - keep readily available in the cockpit when you are sailing; anything can happen, at any time even when you are a mile and a half from anchorage. You need to be able to put on without delay.
3. Keep your bilge pumps clean and test their efficiency; all crew should know how to work the manual pump; (this was not always our case, but we had just pulled both out and gone through the dirty job of cleaning the filters and installing a high water alarm, just a week before.)
4. Attempt to contain/slow down any water entering your boat. At the time of the encounter, the automatic bilge kicked on, but before even knowing that, Donna started pumping the manual and Darryl went down to the salon, checked under the boards, and ascertained that water was indeed coming in. We had our motor off; however, we turned it on and, apparently the action slowed down the water flow into the boat somewhat.
5. Make sure your VHF/SSB radios work. Unfortunately, we were having coverage problems and, had we been further out and not in such close proximity to other cruisers, it could have been fatal.
6. During the initial incident, assign one person on the boat (usually not the Captain/co-captain of affected boat) to choose a specific channel (not 16 or 22) for news/updates of the incident and to keep notes of any cruisers calling in, help offered, people to call back later.
7. Discuss all options with the seasoned cruisers that have gathered around to assist/support you. We were grateful to be able to have assistance in the thinking process of "what next." In discussing the options, we made the decision, after several boats offered to "buddy boat" with us, to attempt to make it to the La Cruz shipyards.
8. Appreciate that you have gone through a traumatic event and that your boat's integrity has been compromised. We slept little, weren't hungry, reacted to the new bumps and sounds occurring in our boat, and had concern as to whether the boat would make it to La Cruz.
9. Before you leave for any port with an "injured boat", talk through as many possible scenarios of further emergencies that could occur and how to be prepared. We discussed that fact that, day or night, at anytime, the boat's condition could worsen - greater water seepage, an unseen crack deepen, loss of motor, loss of electricity, collapse of rigging, etc. Therefore, when we left with "40-Love", heading toward La Cruz, we:
a. Pulled our dinghy behind us, so as to provide us a quick exit from the boat if necessary
b. Placed liferaft and ditch bag (along with key important documents/cell phones/billfolds in dry bag) in cockpit
c. Life jackets in the cockpit and close by at all times
d. All hatches from the cabin left open for ease of escape, if necessary
e. Very sharp knives and wire cutters for dismantling riggings if necessary
The important thing - we are safe and also very overwhelmed by the amount of support we received from total strangers as well as some friends. To mention a few: 40 - Love, Joel and Chris, our buddy boaters; Bill from Fai Sin who dove under our boat and assessed the damage; Dave and Marilee on Tamara who offered to sail with us; Ron on Whirlwind; Tom on Narina; Ken on La Scala, and Mark. There are many others who offered their assistance and warm messages of support, too numerous to list. Please know we are grateful for the outpouring of help!
Donna Foth and Darryl O'Sickey
fothcollins@msn.com

Picture is this winter from our back yard.





Leaving for home today
D & D
03/12/2011, Bucerias

We are on our way home today at 4:20 PM. It's a bittersweet time for both of us, but we are looking forward to seeing our friends and family. We have submitted an article for Latitude 38 Magazine as to our experiences and what we learned. . . if it's published, we'll let you know on this blog as well as post things periodically as to updates of survey. Thanks to all our new and old friends and family members who followed us through our journeys. . . For our next adventure, maybe kayaking down the Amazon???? Donna and Darryl

03/13/2011 | carolyn
oh good grief - the amazon? aren't there things that bite you there ---- I mean "BIG THINGS". Take care and talk to you soon.

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First time cruisers
Who: Darryl & Donna
Port: Mazatlan
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