17 July 2017 | 21 17'N:157 50.5'W, Transpac LA to Hawaii
16 July 2017 | 21 17'N:157 50.5'W, Transpac LA to Hawaii
14 July 2017 | 23 16'N:155 07'W, Transpac LA to Hawaii
14 July 2017 | 23 23'N:152 08'W, Transpac LA to Hawaii
12 July 2017 | 25 46'N:148 51'W, Transpac LA to Hawaii
11 July 2017 | 27 17'N:146 22'W, Transpac LA to Hawaii
10 July 2017 | 27 24'N:141 39'W, Transpac LA to Hawaii
09 July 2017 | 27 40.535'N:138 50.711'W, Transpac LA to Hawaii
09 July 2017 | 27 52.4'N:137 33.0'W, Transpac LA to Hawaii
08 July 2017 | 28 05.2'N:134 00.9'W, Transpac LA to Hawaii
07 July 2017 | 28 19.35'N:131 24.2'W, Transpac LA to Hawaii
06 July 2017 | 29 11.392'N:126 40.808'W, Not in the Brochure
05 July 2017 | 29 40.67'N:124 16.00'W, Transpac - LA to Hawaii
04 July 2017 | 33 05.422'N:117 38.319'W, Transpac - LA to Hawaii
03 July 2017 | 33 05.422'N:117 38.319'W, Long Beach
03 July 2017 | 33 05.422'N:117 38.319'W, Long Beach
01 July 2017 | 33 05.422'N:117 38.319'W, Long Beach
29 June 2017 | 33 05.422'N:117 38.319'W, Long Beach
26 April 2017 | 33 05.422'N:117 38.319'W, Santa Ana - California
24 April 2017 | 31 08.345'N:116 27.259'W, San Quintin Bay

It's a Wrap !

17 July 2017 | 21 17'N:157 50.5'W, Transpac LA to Hawaii
What else to say ? Think Chris, blogger-in-chief, has covered most everything. Losing our Code 4 so early on - and to a bad repair - was a big blow. Despite that we managed to finish 3rd across the line from out of 17 yachts in our start. A decent result, with no damage to crew or yacht, is a credit to everyone's seamanship.

Really great group on Zephyr who all worked tirelessly so thank you all. And of course a huge thank you to Micky for entrusting me with the wellbeing of his pride and joy that Micky prepared so immaculately.


Sailing does not make the world go round

16 July 2017 | 21 17'N:157 50.5'W, Transpac LA to Hawaii
So we finished TransPac 2017 at one minute before sunset (1915) last evening. We achieved just over 200 nm in the 24 hours despite some rather difficult light airs condition during the night. But come the dawn, "A Watch" were hit by two squalls which set up the day with gusts of over 34 knots. Zephyr leapt into action and from that moment we averaged over 9 knots in a breeze which rarely deserted us. Our loyal Code one red spinnaker did not let us down.

The final ride into the finish was utterly unforgettable as we surfed at speeds up to 16 knots in fanastic conditions almost dead downwind. We had to gybe twice as katabatic winds poured off the coast and Diamond Head came into view.

The organisers had laid on a very special welcome for each boat was they came into Honolulu Marina with pinapples full of Maitai and flowers for the . Each boat has been allocated a family to look after them and the reception was incredible - AlooooHaaaa!

So I am signing off but I know our skipper wants to say a few words which no doubt will follow later. Thank you Micky - our ride on Zephyr was a wonderful experience and we wish you well for your future adventures.

Chris C

Sailing doen't make the world go round Sailing is what makes the ride worthwhile

With sincerest of apologies to Elizabeth Barrett Browning (1806-1861)

Of Fairy Tales and Magic

14 July 2017 | 23 16'N:155 07'W, Transpac LA to Hawaii
Remember when you read Ali Baba as a child, and how one's imagination was swept away into realms of the impossible, sharing Ali's journey across the night skies, in wonderous awe? Well, last night was our Magic Carpet night!

After a tricky day of fluky, 6-9 knot breeze, the 'boat chat' fantasy of cold drinks, steak and salad for Saturday lunch in Honolulu had dissipated..... there was a big 'hole' of very light air between us and our destination, some 400 miles directly downwind. The pressing question that we had to grapple with was whether to head South and sail round the back of the hole, or keep pushing West to find stronger airs and lay us onto a gybe direct to Honolulu and the first TransPac finish for any of us.

Ocean zephyrs were our choice. And as the sun set directly before us, a beautifully placid Pacific Ocean, with the most gentle of undulating swells, drew us into an ink-black night; the firmament of heavens above pressed down on us, not a cloud, totally moonless. And as if by magic, a firm breeze of 14-16 knots gently picked us up. Just like Ali Baba, in the most beautiful silence we slipped on our own magic carpet through the night, guided by the shooting stars above, and leaving our own stream of phosphoresecence, some 30 meters long, for onlookers from above that we can only imagine, to enjoy.

Only the Fairy Godmother could create Cinderella's magnificent gown, and our best ballgown, the Code 4 'Big Z' spinnaker had been reduced to Cinders tattered clothing a few days earlier, ripping across the top, and down both sides of leech and luff to a degree where most of us had written off any recovery of the sail, even in a professoinal loft. But night after night, day after day, like the Godmother's elves, Jeff, Dickie and Porge, the fairy Godmother sprinkled some magic dust, and this afternoon we once again hoisted the prettiest dress Zephyr owns! Truly, repairing this sail was an exceptional labor of skill and commitment to our race.

We are all in great spirits as we run down our lay-line: we are 198 miles from Diamond Head Honolulu, with a fair breeze, wearing our prettiest outfit; we have 7 apples left; enough eggs & bacon for one more breakfast (brilliant by Chris); half a tin of coffee; and 4 Earl Grey T bags which have already had a couple of 'brews'! [And we do have a reliable supply of freeze-dried food with exotic Indian-sounding names which all tastes more or less the same (to me!)].

One last magical picture of a different nature to share: yesterday morning the ocean in front of us erupted, and one could be forgiven for thinking we were approaching a dangerous reef. But instead we were witness to a huge pod of bottle-nose dolphin rounding up a school of small tuna for their breakfast.

Magic comes in unlimited shapes and forms, and seeing Mother Nature waving her wand always serves to remind us how interdependent this planet and its occupants truly are; the role of mankind in serving that balance- or not - is at at our collective cost. Given by the amount of rubbish and rogues netting materials we have encountered, we are way out of kilter!


From the Lone Yank on the Boat

14 July 2017 | 23 23'N:152 08'W, Transpac LA to Hawaii
After being sold on the idea of a day sail on the sailing yacht Zephyr in Long Beach California, I was held captive and taken out to sea, only to discover that they were headed to Hawaii. With this realization that it was going to be a long journey I settled into the routine of the boat.

As time progressed I was pressed into service to do all kinds of repairs on the boat, fixing the tack point on the pole after a spectacular break shortly after this trip began. Then I was told to fix the spinnaker that we blew up in the night not much longer after that. Mend most of the running gear on the boat. Working on all the watches non stop. Then we were flying a spinnaker well out of its wind range with the standing order from the skipper to go faster but don't blow this thing up or we have nothing left.

Lots of stress including writing this blog. Now to touch on the lack of understanding of the English language, it does create quite a barrier when trying to communicate with the crew. All kidding aside this has been a wonderful trip with great crew that each brings something to the experience. Still miss a lot of the humor but I am catching up.

I hope to have some more adventures with this lot again. Thanks to all who made this happen. Until I am forced to write something nice again.

Aloha and Mahalo, Jeffrey

Celebrate Good Times...!

12 July 2017 | 25 46'N:148 51'W, Transpac LA to Hawaii
Sabre your champagne, drop your main sails & raise a glass! It's the Colonel's birthday and he is celebrating his 21st for the 53rd time and he hasn't changed a bit... A very happy birthday from all the crew on Zephyr - we have got a few surprises but ssssshhhhhhh, don't tell him!

Just a few reflective notes from me as we sail under an almost cloudless sky, with the trade winds puffing at a steady 17-20kts and with 570 miles to go to Hawaii.

Having been fortunate to be part of the TransAtlantic Race on board Zephyr in 2015 I feel that I have a reasonable place to compare and contrast.

The main thing, and the saddest thing about our crossing from Los Angeles to Honolulu, is the rubbish. We have been literally dodging various articles of fishing tackle and other wastes from the human race (old ropes, fish caskets, oil drums, buoys and other flotsam and jetsam) on an hourly basis. This has struck every member of the crew and in some ways made us all self-conscious - even when it comes to throwing paper towels over board!

As an indication of this, we have had to back the boat down (by sailing dead upwind) 3 or 4 times now to try and remove things from the keel. As well as one swimmer in the water... (although I did LOVE it!).

There has also been a distinct lack of wildlife (make that zero). I had expected to be joined daily by dolphins jumping in the bow wave, whales idly checking out the keel and a plethora of sea birds inspecting Zephyr's crew from above (probably the safest place!). There has (so far) been none of it. Apart from a few lost looking Sheerwaters.

Despite the above, the Transpac has been a downhill sleigh ride where the trade winds have been fairly constant and the sun has now (finally) come out - ideal!

Not only this but on a more sentimental note - very few people on planet earth ever have the chance to do anything like this in their lifetime. I (and the rest of the team) feel extremely privileged to be out here, witnessing featureless 360 degree horizons every hour and being part of only 140 internationally flagged pleasure boats that visit Hawaii each year!

Spirits and humour onboard are high as we are reassured that we not only have enough wind to make it across the finish line without the devil�'s orchestra (flogging sails) playing too much, but we also have enough food and water... Phew!

In the meantime, I need to sabre the Champagne, I won�'t drop the mainsails (although if anyone can persuade Draconis or Locomotive to do that, we would be eternally grateful) and I will be raising a glass to our watch captain - 'The Colonel'.

For the time being, it is 'OUT' from me.

Bloody busy onboard this ship

11 July 2017 | 27 17'N:146 22'W, Transpac LA to Hawaii
Towards the end of last night watch, as the moon finally showed its face for the first time, we managed to spot a slight tear in the Code 2 red spinnaker. Being able to catch it early, Jeff and Billy repaired it right on the foredeck and hoist her up again within minutes (well under an hour but still bloody impressive).

Porge was sent up the mast...again. Whilst up there he managed to take multiple photos and videos and more photos until we demanded he came down, but we had the halyard sticking a bit so Porge saved the day. All the while, Chris and Billy kept helm for 7 straight hours, whilst Jeff, Mick and me helped in the ongoing mend of the poor little code 4 (the big Z sail). Dave and Porge spent most of the day taking apart the water maker and putting it all back together and finally, at 3pm we had a bodged water maker sputtering a small but steady stream of water and many a wash was had to celebrate!

Finally, we made our first gybe since Catalina, this can mean only one thing - we're getting close to the finish line (that and the fact that we moved time zones again today).

Watch A is now settled into her 6 hours watch with most of us only having two hours sleep. Watch B is tucked up and tuckered out. Brilliant crew we have aboard Zephyr, no one stops till the job is done.

Finally, the last of the cabbage was eaten today, it is a sad day we say goodbye to the sole vegetable we have had along this journey, but I feel we will not be ordering cabbage on the side once we arrive in Hawaii. Now it's freeze-dried food and hot dogs - delish.

love to all Rooey xox

Cabbages & Kings

10 July 2017 | 27 24'N:141 39'W, Transpac LA to Hawaii
For the first time since we passed Catalina, the sun has seriously threatened to shine, the water temperature is in excess of 23 degrees and there is little requirement for sleeping bags. As I write we have passed to 1,000nm mark and there is 957nm to go to Diamond Head. We are now reularly surfing and the current record (soon to be exceeded) is 16.43 knots. Our faithful red spinnaker is pulling us along at an average speed of 9.5 knots.

It has to be said that the skipper's expertise at fixing things has been sorely tested with the watermaker. On the other hand the genset is working so we have absolutely no need to use the main engine. Wonderful!

Watch B is performing superbly. Thanks to George we are holders not only the top speed recorded of this passage but also the distance run in a single watch. However we have to admit that the other watch has their own array of expertise and dare I say it, a great deal of charm and cameraderie. Jeff is facing a herculean task with the "Big Zee" spinnaker, but we are convinced he will get there in the end for a final flourish.

On the domestic front, Patrick will be relieved to hear that we should, with a little prudence, have sufficient LaVazza coffee to see us through and there are sufficient tea bags. And yes we did find another cabbage lurking in the fridge. Its days are numbered I think. However the spices provided by Seth were not allowed on board and are on their way to Hawaii. There is not even flour allowed for a white sauce so to show off ones'culinary expertise is frankly a little difficult. Instead our pre-cooked food provided for us by a lady rejoicing by the name of Cindy Bambam has been voted a huge success. It will last until tomorrow and then its freeze-dried time. I cannot wait!

Chris C

Trash Collection

09 July 2017 | 27 40.535'N:138 50.711'W, Transpac LA to Hawaii
There are some days on long passages when it seems that very little has been happening when it comes to writing the blog but today has been exactly the opposite!

Before breakfast was even served Porge donned his swim gear and plunged over the side to inspect the water-maker intake and a vibration that we had felt on the rudder. His uncle was in charge of safety precautions and ensured that at all times a lifeline was in easy reach. Following the comments from some of the other racers it appears that we have not been alone in having to back down or send someone over the side to clear debris or kelp. In fact the amount of rubbish including fishing nets, floating buoys, canisters and a 45 gallon oil drum has been extraordinary, with the disappointing corollary that there has been very little wildlife in evidence with one notable exception in the form of a flying fish smacking Jeff in the left eye as he negotiated a particularly challenging wave!

One of the joys of racing on Zephyr has historically been the efficiency of our water-maker ensuring that everyone was able to take a daily shower. Sadly for this passage it seems unlikely that we will be able to continue this luxury and will instead have to wash sparingly or saltily as it has stopped working.

With our main spinnaker in the process of repair under Jeff's excellent guidance we have spent two days with the A2 providing a very impressive level of support. The overnight steering with this sail close to its limits proved challenging to us all but was probably the most exciting sailing that we have seen to date.

This afternoon with gusts of up to 27 knots we decided that we had tested the limits enough and resorted to the tried and tested wing-on-wing rig that we had used for so much of the Transat 2015.

We are holding our own against most of our fleet with one exception who are quietly taking back some of what we had claimed from them. The challenge is still to achieve line honours amongst those who started on the first day.

We have really enjoyed the comments that so many of you have posted on the blog (please continue) and in particular would like to take full advantage of Penny's redcurrant jelly succeess to place an order for two jars for our next passage.

We have now passed the halfway mark and spirits are high and a hoped-for arrival by next weekend.

Lines of Play

09 July 2017 | 27 52.4'N:137 33.0'W, Transpac LA to Hawaii
Pic from left to right of rudder, saildrive and keel. More re this later...

More cabbage than coffee!

08 July 2017 | 28 05.2'N:134 00.9'W, Transpac LA to Hawaii
Pic of Jeff and his 1845 Partagas Gold Rush stogie.

Yesterday afternoon, Friday July 7, our breeze stiffened, gusting up to a nice 18-21 knots; prudence led to a beautifully timed call by our Skipper to protect our remaining downwind Code 2, and we reverted to our reaching AO spinnaker. This made our sailing course less direct, but provided some chomping good sailing, with a voyage top speed of more than 12.5 knots and some mini-surfing, all the while protecting our most vital asset, 'big red'. But by sunset we were back in 12-15 knots of following wind, and we switched back to the Code 2 once more.

Our task at hand from now for the next 1,360 miles into Hawaii is to maximize our skill at downwind sailing, hunting for speed by avoiding dead downwind, while holding ourselves to account to avoid any wastage by sailing too wide an angle. This 'threading of the needle', as we have learned from TransPac lingo, is known as 'slot-car racing'; and as I rather nervously point out, slot racing tends to sort the wolves from the lambs in TransPac racing! However, our numbers are better each Watch, and a wolverine new on-board competition (with a prize that I am not sure Micky has completely signed off on!!) known as the Rolex Reward, are telling us we are a crew of keen sailors and fast learners!

On the domestic front having a warm fresh shower at a whim makes Zephyr more comfortable than the Four Seasons on any day. But in a most unlikely turn of events, we still seem to have more cabbage than coffee on board, with just one tin left and yet still 2 more cabbages! Micky announced this morning we may have to have a coffee rationing regime! And we are already sharing T-bags, and re-using our disposable food bowls to make 1 bowl cover one day.......such was our commitment to light-weighting the boat, we keep saying to each other!

All is well. Please keep us updated on Wimbledon and thank you for all the Posts which we love.

Vessel Name: Zephyr
Vessel Make/Model: Shipman 50
Hailing Port: Lymington
Home Page: www.yachtzephyr.com
Zephyr's Photos - Main
the boat
6 Photos
Created 22 August 2014