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D & D Nagle aboard MV DavidEllis
davidellis underway 16 Jun 2009

As our weather router Lee forecast, approaching area of Tokyo and were hit with NE winds 16-17kts for last couple of hours accompanied by NE seas over NNE swell; skies continue hazy -- we were quite fogged in until this wind picked up -- but it's thin as I can see blue overhead. Barometer rose all day yesterday and last night 1014 now.

Current (2300 15th UTC / 0800 16th local) position: 34deg 10.5' N 138deg 41.5 E; COG 048; SOG 6.2 into (small) headseas

We went back to 2 watch-standers per shift last night due to poor visibility -- taking turns one keeping watch by eye into the fog, the other on the radar.

We identified a port up the coast past Tokyo which is very close to Narita Intl -- Kashima Ko -- but in email conversation with Japan Coast Guard, we were told it's a closed port. We prefer not to enter Tokyo Bay and deal with all the commercial traffic, and the long run in and back out, especially if it's foggy. So doing our numbers, it looks like we'll continue NE up to Hokkaido to Kushiro. BA sailing directions show an airport at Kushiro, and we've asked some folks to check for us on daily flights to Narita Intl out of there. If that comes back affirmative, we'll continue on without stopping and should get there in 4-5 days with a couple days grace for the 23 Jun flight out of Narita.

Right now our COG is towards O-Shima island just south of the entrance to Tokyo Bay, but we'll pass south of the island and continue up the Honshu coast.

Lots of great information came back from many of you regards transport, O-Shima, Narita Intl and several even identified Kashima as the closest to Narita -- I guess you-all didn't know it was a closed port either. Almost no duplication in your info, really fantastic help. As noted above, the only thing we need to know now is whether there are daily flights from Kushiro airport (on Hokkaido island) down to Narita Intl, and we can finalize our decision about stopping or not, before Hokkaido.

We've picked up a passenger -- a pretty rasty-looking crow came aboard just about sunset last night, in the fog. He takes off occassionally to see if he can find his way home I guess, but otherwise rides on the pilot hourse roof or up on the spreaders.
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06/15/2009 | clint
I forgot it is a pretty important JSDef base...

There are a lot of ports like that I think.

Your plan sounds like a good one. Avoiding Tokyo Bay is a really good plan, IMO.
davidellis underway 15 June 2009

Hello family and friends:

(0900 hrs local) we continue to have good cruising weather: winds less than 5kts variable for the past 12 hrs; now 5kts out of the S. We continue to have a small (less than 1m) swell out of the SW, and we are definitely being carried by some aspect of the Kuroshio Current. skies and horizon hazy -- we got into some dense fog for a short period last night (local NAVTEX reporting widespread seafog)

current position: 32deg 36.6' N 135deg 26' E, COG 058 T, SOG 8.7 kts

So all is going well, and we're about 250 nautical miles out of the entrance to Tokyo Bay. As Dorothy and Justin are leaving the boat, we need some help determining where to pull in to let them off. On one hand, we would prefer it to be as short a side-trip off the sealanes as possible (to go inside Tokyo Bay will add as much as a day just getting in, then coming back out). On the other hand, we need to land them in a place where they can easily get transport into Tokyo / Narita. We have all kinds of detailed information aboard on various ports, but no information about what's ashore in each of these ports.

At the fantasy extreme of ideal, there is an island on the coast offshore of Tokyo Bay, O-Shima. Ideally O-Shima would have a high speed ferry from O-Shima into Tokyo (and as I write this, I realize I actually have no idea where Narita Airport is in relation to Tokyo or Yokahama or any of these other possible ports). If O-Shima had that kind of easy transport, then we wouldn't have to transit with DE up into Tokyo Bay at all. Anyone out there know anything about this area, or have an interest of access to researching this?

We had a visit from a Japan Coast Guard aircraft yesterday which circled and spoke to us on VHF for awhile, determining who we were and where we were going. But other than that, very little boat traffic -- we are way offshore, riding the current and hoping to stay clear of the fog closer to shore.

Hopefully by tomorrow we'll have more definitive informaiton about where we're pulling into port.

06/15/2009 | Roger V. Rude
This has probably already been addressed but... if you folks are going to Oshima to off-load Dorothy and Justin, there is an airport on the north side of the island serviced by All Nippon Airways (ANA) which has flights to the States. They could catch a flight there to Tokyo (about $110-130) and connect to the States. I don't know where the closest port is on Oshima to the airport, but I am sure you folks have the charts. Here is ANA's website for booking tickets:
06/15/2009 | clint
OH I remember O-shima. Especially a young lady named Mariko, but that probably isn't gong tohelp you right now.

There is a flight to Narita, but I have no recollection as to cost. Pretty regular service thought, IIRC.

Have fun!
davidellis underway 13Jun 2300 UTC

actually early morning 14 Jun, local time. Hello Family & Friends:

We've come approx 600 miles since leaving Ishigaki, and have approximately another 550 miles to Kushiro Ko on the SE coast of Hokkaido, where we will fuel and provision before taking off towards the Aleutian Islands and Dutch Harbor. (in case you missed a chapter, we switched from Hakodate to Kushiro.

Another change is that Justin and Dorothy will leave the boat and fly out of Narita (Tokyo). We've another 400 miles to go before reaching the area of Tokyo, and have not yet identified the port we will go into to arrange transport for Justin & Dot. This should happen on Tuesday local time, and Kirk and I will likely accompany them out to the airport, before returning to the boat and getting underway again. Might be there a couple of days, depending upon when their flight is, and distance between the port-to-be-named and the airport.

light winds on the nose and rain all day yesterday, but last night we had a shift in the wind to the SW (our port quarter -- behind us to the left) and the rain dried up. This morning we've got hazy skies, sun, and the SW wind with a meter + sea/swell out of the SW as well, surfing us a bit. Our portside paravane fish is out, like a training-wheel, to give us a little stability as the swell lifts that corner and passes under the boat. We've opened our hatches to air out the boat and put up the sails to give us a little push. For awhile we were definitely getting an assist from the Kuroshio (Japan Current, or Black Current), putting us a bit over 8 kts, but now we're down to 6.3. And speaking of which, here's the numbers:

current position: 31deg 06' N 132deg 32.5 E; COG 060 T, SOG 6.3kts,

we haven't had much boat traffic around us since leaving Ishigaki; last night though, during one watch we had 6 or so small fishing boats around us. there's been an increase in bioluminesence from further south, although it's a colder green/blue than that I've seen in other places e.g. Sea of Cortez, Baja

Rusty seems to be thriving on boat life; Dorothy's doing significantly better than the leg up to Ishigaki, spending about half her day up and about. The rest of us split the watches -- ad hoc during the day and 2 hour changes at night. I cleaned an emulsion of oil and water? coolant? from the engine room bilge yesterday. The oil I know came from the jug of new oil which melted in contact with the exhaust our first night out of HK. But not sure about the water...

Engineroom temps are higher than I would like (116-119F), something I will have to address in future. As we get up into colder latitudes, we can leave the ER door open and that should help both ways.

Had another movie last night -- Justin's choice this time -- DeJaVu with Denzel Washington. I've already seen it a couple of times, but enjoy it anyway. Tonight... Captain's Courageous with Spencer Tracey (from the book by Rudyard Kipling).

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06/13/2009 | clint
Glad to hear you all are coming along ok!

Sounds like a typical voyage with it's share of issues, but no show stoppers!

I would think the water should be getting pretty cool by now...

06/15/2009 | Dian
You saw DeJavu before? That's funny!
I tried to find you on Google Earth, but it keeps telling me it can't understand the coordinates. I'll just have to follow you on Sailblogs.

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Who: Mike (Dave) and Dorothy Nagle
Port: Sebastopol, CA, USA
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