SV Panta Rhei Retirement Trip

Vessel Name: Panta Rhei
Vessel Make/Model: Able Apogee 50
Hailing Port: Seattle
Crew: Larry and Karen
19 July 2016 | Valdez, Alaska
05 July 2016 | Seward, Alaska
04 July 2016 | Nuka Island, Home Cove, Alaska
02 July 2016 | Red Fox Bay on Afognak Island, Alaska
01 July 2016 | Geographic Harbor
01 July 2016 | Geographic Harbor, Alaska
30 June 2016 | Port Wrangell, Alaska
30 June 2016 | Port Wrangell, Alaska (not to be confused with Wrangell, Alaska)
27 June 2016 | Chignik, Alaska, USA
23 June 2016 | Larry Nelson
20 June 2016 | King Cove Alaska
14 June 2016 | Dutch Harbor
10 June 2016 | Dutch Harbor, Alaska, USA
09 June 2016 | On passage from Majuro, Marshall Islands to Dutch Harbor, Alaska
09 June 2016 | On passage from Majuro, Marshall Islands to Dutch Harbor, Alaska
07 June 2016 | On passage from Majuro, Marshall Islands to Dutch Harbor, Alaska
07 June 2016 | On passage from Majuro, Marshall Islands to Dutch Harbor, Alaska
07 June 2016 | On passage from Majuro, Marshall Islands to Dutch Harbor, Alaska
05 June 2016 | On passage from Majuro, Marshall Islands to Dutch Harbor, Alaska
04 June 2016 | On passage from Majuro, Marshall Islands to Dutch Harbor, Alaska
Recent Blog Posts
19 July 2016 | Valdez, Alaska

Prince William Sound with John and his family

Our son John and his wife Marcy and their two children, Zee and Olyn have visited us. Yay! We are trying to show them all of Alaska in only a few days. So far we've been to two tidewater glaciers and a waterfall anchorage and a grassy meadow anchorage. All beautiful, including sun, calm wind, and warm [...]

05 July 2016 | Seward, Alaska

Panta Rhei Arrived in Seward, Alaska

We left Dutch Harbor on June 19 and arrived Seward on July 4. That is 15 days to make the trip. Pretty fast, we think. We got lucky on weather and we kept moving most days.

04 July 2016 | Nuka Island, Home Cove, Alaska

Almost Home in Home Cove

We are anchor down at 9 pm. It has been a long day. We left Red Fox Bay and journeyed about 90 nm to Nuka Island, Home Cove (59d23.740mN 150d41.994mW). We are looking at the Kenai Pennisula and it has an abundance of trees and glaciers that flow down near to the sea.

02 July 2016 | Red Fox Bay on Afognak Island, Alaska

How will this story end?

We left beautiful Geographic Harbor at 6:20 am and arrived Red Fox Bay (58d27.041mN 152d36.238mW) on Afognak Island (Island north of Kodiak) at 5:00 pm.

01 July 2016 | Geographic Harbor

Bear on the beach

It is a big brown one with a hump on its back. Watching it move slowly is a study in grace. It came down a small stream and browsed the beach (it is low tide) and then headed back up the stream. There is brush on the hillside so he disappeared.

01 July 2016 | Geographic Harbor, Alaska

Arrived Geographic Harbor

We have arrived in Geographic Harbor (58d5.9mN 154d35.4mW). It has it all. Waterfalls, mountains, snow capped peaks, green alder brush, steep steep hillsides, narrow waterways, islands, calm wind, partial overcast but high so mountains are in full view. But, no bears yet. We arrived at 7:50 am. Their [...]

Prince William Sound with John and his family

19 July 2016 | Valdez, Alaska
Larry Nelson
Our son John and his wife Marcy and their two children, Zee and Olyn have visited us. Yay! We are trying to show them all of Alaska in only a few days. So far we've been to two tidewater glaciers and a waterfall anchorage and a grassy meadow anchorage. All beautiful, including sun, calm wind, and warm weather. So what was their reaction? John wants to sail more! I keep telling him the wind will come. And in the meantime, we have glacier ice for our drinks.

John wants to see Cordova where we are considering spending the winter. They have a ski area that is basically in town! It is a small town, but it has a swimming pool across from the marina and the marina has full hook ups. Today we are in Valdez (also a nice town that is a possibility). Tomorrow we will go to Cordova (Its a two day trip).

The picture shows John on the bow where he was scouting for ice on the trip to the face of the Columbia glacier.

Panta Rhei Arrived in Seward, Alaska

05 July 2016 | Seward, Alaska
Larry
We left Dutch Harbor on June 19 and arrived Seward on July 4. That is 15 days to make the trip. Pretty fast, we think. We got lucky on weather and we kept moving most days.

Along the way we had a few surprises. Noises always surprise us. We hit a log, many clumps of kelp (it aggregates into a truly imposing clump), and changes of current. How do you hit changes of current? I really don't know, but I can hear them when the propellor experiences them, same as I can hear changes of pitch in the boat caused by swell. And it worries me because it is hard to identify positively. This is the land of currents though. They are everywhere and they are sometimes rapidly changing. And if the boat goes fast enough during a current change, it interferes with the propellor loading enough to shake the boat, like a wet dog at the beach. Arggggh. That worries me.

We survived "wind amplifiers", too. That is where the weather predicted is easy (say 15 knots) but the actual weather is much worse (say 45 knots). Did I say MUCH worse. That is the weather amplifier affect and weather amplifiers are all along the Alaska Pennisula. The locals know where, but newbies have to learn from scratch. You can avoid weather amplifiers by having no weather to amplify. Wait for calm. That's our strategy. It works, but you might wait quite a while!

Somehow, our boat survives all this. Actually, as we came to the dock in Seward, it seemed to still be running fine. That after a very very long trip with lots of motoring.

And Seward is a tourist town. Lots of good restaurants, stores, laundromats, an RV park. We are liking it. But so far it is a little thin on internet. We will see if we can get cellular internet service possibly through AT&T. That's a tomorrow task. For today, I got enough internet to get my Apple devices working again. All I had to do was log in to my Apple account. I think this was to force me to accept new changes to terms and conditions. Anyway, it is completely unacceptable to lock me out of my applications without warning me. I will write an email to Apple.

Its not dark yet, but it is late. So we will go to bed. Tomorrow is a busy day.

Almost Home in Home Cove

04 July 2016 | Nuka Island, Home Cove, Alaska
Larry
We are anchor down at 9 pm. It has been a long day. We left Red Fox Bay and journeyed about 90 nm to Nuka Island, Home Cove (59d23.740mN 150d41.994mW). We are looking at the Kenai Pennisula and it has an abundance of trees and glaciers that flow down near to the sea.

Our anchorage has no swell, little wind, no current, no bears. It was easy to get into and the anchor set and held well. We did see a sea otter! And a whale spouting. And there is low low clouds everywhere and of course a generally low (but not as low) overcast. It's not raining yet, but there are signs of rain all around us.

So, we started the heater. We haven't needed it all day, but I wanted to "get cozy" before bed. Speaking of bed, it's time! But it is bright as day and will stay bright until at least 11:30 pm. We are learning to go to sleep anyway.

Karen already fixed us dinner, Sockeye salmon fillet (the last of it), beets, beans, Waldorf salad. Tasty!

Tomorrow is July 4. We should be in Seward and be able to see the fireworks (if they have them). Yay. And we can get our Apple devices fixed, we hope. We still don't know why they did this.

We'll post our arrival in Seward tomorrow. It's a red letter day for us. We can hear the Coast Guard on the radio (more importantly, they could hear us if we needed them!) and we know we are back in civilization and home again. Wilderness means you are all alone and that sometimes isn't good!

How will this story end?

02 July 2016 | Red Fox Bay on Afognak Island, Alaska
Larry
We left beautiful Geographic Harbor at 6:20 am and arrived Red Fox Bay (58d27.041mN 152d36.238mW) on Afognak Island (Island north of Kodiak) at 5:00 pm.

We had way too strong tail winds more than half the way. We were making over 8.5 knots most of the time and we really don't like that. The seas became large and steep since it was wind against current (remember yesterday's current? Still there!) But, we were taking those seas running downwind. There is no way we could have turned around and made any headway. We could have turned off the engine but when the wind went over 40 knots we just decided to ride it out.

Trouble is the boat speeds up on steep swells and overruns the propellor, making it shake like a wet dog on a beach. And we are living inside that "wet dog". What to do? That is always the question. This time we had the staysail ready. We probably should have raised it, slowed down and stood a patient watch. But we just kept motoring along thinking, this will end soon. We hope it ends well.

We are all alone here. We saw no other boats on the entire trip. It was overcast and misty with light rain from time to time. It's the kind of day they set the stage with in horror movies just before the music goes suddenly loud and you jump out of your seat.

The Captain's guide says Red Fox is an all weather anchorage. We sure hope that is true because coming up on the turn into the bay it is blowing 40 knots apparent and we are running downwind at 11 knots. You can add those two together to get the true wind. How is this story going to end???? Credit here, the seas had subsided. That was a good sign.

Well, you may have guessed, it ends in an email and a post to the blog. We found what the book promised. We were plenty worried that it couldn't deliver but here we sit with 12 knots of wind in the middle of a tiny little bay at the end of the inlet that appears made for us. A perfect fit. There are a few differences: Kodiak Island has pine trees! Geographic Harbor had scrub alder brush. You could think you were in the Pacific Northwest
here.

Karen is cooking the salmon fillet with carrots and broccoli. The engine is off. Quiet. The heater is running. We will take hot showers tonight. Nirvana.

I hope tomorrow is a little easier. If it is not, we will be here a little longer!

--

Bear on the beach

01 July 2016 | Geographic Harbor
Larry
It is a big brown one with a hump on its back. Watching it move slowly is a study in grace. It came down a small stream and browsed the beach (it is low tide) and then headed back up the stream. There is brush on the hillside so he disappeared.

There will be more, we are told.

Now for breakfast.

Where is that fishing pole?

Larry

Arrived Geographic Harbor

01 July 2016 | Geographic Harbor, Alaska
Larry
We have arrived in Geographic Harbor (58d5.9mN 154d35.4mW). It has it all. Waterfalls, mountains, snow capped peaks, green alder brush, steep steep hillsides, narrow waterways, islands, calm wind, partial overcast but high so mountains are in full view. But, no bears yet. We arrived at 7:50 am. Their alarms might not have gone off yet.

It feels great to stop. Yup. Engine off. Minimal boat motion. Ohhhh. Nirvana.

We had a strong current against us the whole way. The current data on the map says it can't be so. But it is so and that made the trip a lot longer. But one of us got to sleep and that made the time pass a little quicker when it was our turn.

Our Apple iPhone and Apple iPad decided to revert to a settings mode that locks us out of them until we have internet and can log in to iTunes (or something, since we haven't accomplished it yet). My iPad has my back up gps map. I no longer have a back up. The new surface pro computer that I bought in Honolulu is all we have for navigation. It's working fine, but now I'm running with no back up. Karen's computer has the map, but the ports are not working so I can't hook up the gps. Maybe I could get the map going and plot positions manually. Maybe.

So we are back to plan A, get lucky. We can fix this when we get to Seward. That's IF we get to Seward.

Meanwhile we are looking for bears and fishing. That's what there is to do here.

Pics from Mapcarta
Panta Rhei's Photos - Shipyard rudder repair
Photo 11 of 11 | Back To Album
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larry with the repaired rudder before removal of the old bearing races
larry with the repaired rudder before removal of the old bearing races
Added 6 September 2010

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