SV Panta Rhei Retirement Trip

Vessel Name: Panta Rhei
Vessel Make/Model: Able Apogee 50
Hailing Port: Seattle
Crew: Larry and Karen
Social:
05 August 2016 | Seward, AK
26 July 2016 | Whittier, AK
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
Recent Blog Posts
05 August 2016 | Seward, AK

We are becoming residents of Seward, AK

It is common in the sailing community to "dis" cold climates. This is also a common occurance in the retirement community. But there are times when the road less traveled looks pretty good. We just spent the better part of a year in an oppressively hot environment just north of the equator where to live [...]

26 July 2016 | Whittier, AK

What is Panta Rhei going to do next?

John and Marcy and the grandkids have completed their vacation and are headed back to work. It was a grand vacation for us all. And it all happened at a pace of a young working couple. Now we go back to a retirement pace. We started that process with a nap.

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.

We are becoming residents of Seward, AK

05 August 2016 | Seward, AK
Larry Nelson
It is common in the sailing community to "dis" cold climates. This is also a common occurance in the retirement community. But there are times when the road less traveled looks pretty good. We just spent the better part of a year in an oppressively hot environment just north of the equator where to live you needed to be pretty much naked. Shorts and T shirts, the retirement uniform, were soaked in sweat.

But then we took a really big trip and ohhhhh what a change. In the middle of summer everyone was wearing coats. Rain felt like liquid ice cubes. And everything was green. The weather is good now, but winter is coming. We have time to go south and in fact most our friends that traveled here are going on to Seattle. But not us. Not yet. We are going to see this place including in winter.

To winter here you need a safe place. The weather isn't just cold, it gets stormy too. So we have found a dock behind a breakwater with power and water. And we are in a town with a good library, pool, restaurants, acquarium, grocery store .. We are enjoying being fully back in the USA. What we needed was a car, so we bought a new one!

Its a Chevrolet Equinox and it is a marvel. We are so loving it even as we struggle to learn how to operate it. This isn't your 1950's chevy. All new cars have improved and we are totally enjoying the improvements.

Before the snow comes we will take a road trip to Denali and Fairbanks where there are hot springs and vistas. The picture shows our new silver ice metallic car.

What is Panta Rhei going to do next?

26 July 2016 | Whittier, AK
Larry Nelson
John and Marcy and the grandkids have completed their vacation and are headed back to work. It was a grand vacation for us all. And it all happened at a pace of a young working couple. Now we go back to a retirement pace. We started that process with a nap.

This retirement is a strange thing. There are so many choices. It isn't really clear which is best. We are headed into fall in Alaska. Already we have rain and more wind. Do we stay in Seward or Cordova or Valdez or Sitka? We have friends coming to Seward (Rod and Elizabeth) and friends who live in Seward (Paul and Louise and Samantha and Jesse). We know very old friends (Fran and Jim) who are living in Sitka. We don't have friends in Cordova or Valdez yet. They appeared to be friendly cities. There is a decrease in the infrastructure in the smaller cities and the water at the docks gets turned off during winter. We can get water, but it may be an effort. Probably in Sitka it would not be quite as difficult due to their more southerly and maritime weather. We are studying this situation and trying to make a decision. If it is Sitka, there appears to be a weather window developing about the end of this week. Hmmmm? Big decisions.

I posted a picture that explains some of the inputs we are getting. (note, I couldn't actually post the picture due to website difficulties. The picture reads: For your safety because of Whittiers severe winter conditions, please wear ice cleats when walking outside)

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!

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Panta Rhei's Photos - Main
22 Photos
Created 1 October 2013
Pictures of South Island NZ and the Milford Track
68 Photos
Created 2 March 2013
Blackwater cave exploring in NZ
18 Photos
Created 20 December 2012
Travel from the Marquesas to Rangiroa to Papette
104 Photos
Created 6 June 2012
Pics from the crossing and after arrival in the marquesas
24 Photos
Created 10 May 2012
Karen and Larry exploring Santa Cruz, Isla Isabella, and San Cristobal Islands
30 Photos
Created 3 April 2012
pictures from a passage aboard SV Talofa as line handlers
80 Photos
Created 17 March 2012
accumulated pictures of the SV Safety Cat rescue and repair
63 Photos
Created 7 July 2011
swimming with a whale shark in clear warm water
9 Photos
Created 12 June 2011
Karen and Larry hike up a desert canyon in Mexico
43 Photos
Created 22 May 2011
pictures of Karen at the doctor, shopping in Mazatlan, and work on the boat in the yard
26 Photos
Created 5 April 2011
Pictures of San Blas and Isla Isabella
41 Photos
Created 30 March 2011
pictures of the trip up a jungle river to a crocodile farm and to a spring which is the source of all San Blas water
72 Photos
Created 28 March 2011
pictures of karen's medical care for her arm injury while in San Blas
16 Photos
Created 27 March 2011
Day trip from La Cruz to Yualapa by bus and panga
44 Photos
Created 25 March 2011
Pictures of our day trip to La Penita
10 Photos
Created 18 March 2011
cleaning boat bottoms and other recent activities
23 Photos
Created 5 March 2011
bob and Larry went looking for a hose from a store next to a "Table Dance" entertainment center
9 Photos
Created 22 February 2011
A day at the beach with exotic drinks and then north to Lazaro Cardenas
6 Photos
Created 11 February 2011
Before and after pictures of a friends boat underbody showing the growth that happens in a short time in Zihuatanejo
12 Photos
Created 8 February 2011
pictures from Bahia Santiago to Ziahuatanejo including Ixtapa
40 Photos
Created 1 February 2011
Sailfest pictures
21 Photos
Created 1 February 2011
A trip with Jake and Sharon up the jungle river in Tenacatita
11 Photos
Created 16 December 2010
Scenes from our stay in Paradise Village in Puerto Vallarta
19 Photos
Created 7 December 2010
Scenes from Paul Nelson's visit in Paradise Village and in Puerto Vallarta including procession for Lady of Guadalupe
21 Photos
Created 7 December 2010
hike up the river and float trip down it
17 Photos
Created 4 December 2010
Arrival in the south part of Mexico and beginning of the cruising lifestyle
21 Photos
Created 23 November 2010
warmer weather experiences
21 Photos
Created 15 November 2010
stop in san francisco at at Sea Ranch CA to visit Grace and Bob Carter
44 Photos
Created 11 October 2010
pictures from preparing and leaving Seattle to Ft Bragg CA
16 Photos
Created 30 September 2010
weather faxes that show the weather in the Pacific Ocean while we are safe in port in Newport Oregon
1 Photo
Created 26 September 2010
A few pics of Panta Rhei out of the water
11 Photos
Created 6 September 2010
Sherry and Bob took a few pictures and shared them with us.
34 Photos
Created 30 July 2010
travel from Petersburg to Thorne Bay with stop at Anan Bear Observatory
56 Photos
Created 19 July 2010
Candidates for most beautiful places in the world
78 Photos
Created 12 July 2010
bob and Sherry took pictures of Panta Rhei and shared them with us.
29 Photos
Created 12 July 2010
great fishing and crabbing with good weather
23 Photos
Created 1 July 2010
65 Photos
Created 25 June 2010
64 Photos
Created 24 June 2010
Pelican scenes then travel up Lisianski Inlet to Elfin Cove, Inian Bay, Dundas Bay
46 Photos
Created 18 June 2010
trip up lisianski inlet to Elfin Cove, Inian Island, and Dundas Bay
14 Photos
Created 18 June 2010
tight passages that kayakers would love and an abandoned town (Chichagof)
47 Photos
Created 12 June 2010
transit of Lisianski Strait enroute to Pelican
10 Photos
Created 11 June 2010
Around the outside of Baranof Island and some caveing in el capitan passage
37 Photos | 1 Sub-Album
Created 2 June 2010
Prince of Wales Island and enroute
13 Photos
Created 21 May 2010
photos of rudder damage from the log we hit
8 Photos
Created 17 May 2010
32 Photos
Created 15 May 2010
50 Photos
Created 10 May 2010
springtime photos of the inside passage
12 Photos
Created 28 April 2010

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