14 December 2012
04 June 2012
28 May 2012 | St Helena, South Atlantic Ocean
28 May 2012 | St Helena, South Atlantic Ocean
25 May 2012 | Riviera Beach, Florida
23 May 2012 | Riviera Marina, Riviera Beach FL
23 May 2012 | Riviera Beach Marina, Riviera Beach, Florida
19 May 2012 | En route to Riviera Beach, Florida
18 May 2012 | En route to Riviera Beach, Florida
17 May 2012 | En route to Riviera Beach, Florida
16 May 2012 | En route to Riviera Beach, Florida
15 May 2012 | En route to Riviera Beach, Florida
14 May 2012 | En route to Florida
13 May 2012 | Destination:Riviera Beach Marina, Riviera Beach, Florida
12 May 2012 | Destination:Florida
11 May 2012 | On the way to the Caribbean


18 January 2012 | Simonstown, South Africa
My last post left us in light winds and calm seas on the night before arrival. How quickly things changed.

Yesterday, mid-day, and about 20 miles from entrance winds are light, sun is shining - all ok.
I approach the mouth of False Bay, sudden increase of wind to 20-25 knots - all still ok.
About 10 miles from the harbor at Simonstown, winds have climbed to 30 plus knots.
Visibility decreasing. White caps and breaking seas.
Call my friend Ben already in harbor. Conditions? Berth availability? Winds increasing, no berths, must anchor.
5 miles from the harbor, winds have increased, now near 40 knots - Im worried...
Called the harbor on VHF for an escort in case the wind overpowered my attempt to anchor close to shore.
No answer
I call the Navy Base
No answer
The wind is now sustained 40-45, spray inundates the boat.
Luckily I hear Cape Town Radio on the VHF in unrelated matter.
If I can hear them, maybe they can hear me.
I call them, they answer. I tell them my concerns, ask if they can rouse the Navy Base for an escort.
Now, one hour from landfall...wind steady at 45.
I cant turn back into wind and breaking seas, must go forward.
Cape Town radio calls, has alerted the NSRI, (the national rescue organization), to the unfolding situation.
Shortly "RESCUE 10" is seen making her way to Shearwater.
We talk on the radio, the captain indicates he understands the physics of a wing mast - will standby.
They come along side Shearwater and put a man on board.
A marina boat appears bringing Ben whom I had called earlier - he jumps on board.
Now there's genuine concern.
The winds are gusting to 50, we have reached the harbor - small water spouts everywhere.
As we approach the anchorage, all agree that anchoring now is impossible.
The Navy calls, offers their concrete wall. I jump at the offer.
I guide Shearwater nose first, into the wind, up to the wall.
Lines are thrown from both bows.
"RESCUE 10" pushes my starboard side toward the wall.
Not enough power to overcome the wing mast.
The winds now hitting 54 knots.
The marina boat pushes "RESCUE 10" and together they manage to get Shearwater side to wind, against the wall.
15 docking lines later she is secure.

And, as the crewman from RESCUE 10" is about to jump back aboard his boat, he remarks: "That was a good call on your part." And then, "By the way, what was the highest wind you noted on your instruments?" And when I answered "54 knots", he gave a rather wistful look and said: "To bad, not quite a record, welcome to "hurricane alley".

Note: I want to thank and congratulate "RESCUE 10" on a superb performance. In about 2 hours of wrestling Shearwater to the concrete wall in 50 knot winds, not only was there no damage, there wasnt even a scratch!

Vessel Name: Shearwater
Vessel Make/Model: CONSER 47 Racer/Cruiser Catamaran
Hailing Port: West Palm Beach Florida
Mango is a smart, funny, sensitive and totally unique wheaton/sheepdog. . He is my partner on this patently undoglike voyage but remains cheerful about the whole affair. [...]
Extra: Shearwater is a 47 foot, very sleek and light catamaran. She is part of a fleet of 11 that were built - its a sister ship of Shearwater that holds the unofficial speed record. 31 knots! Of the this fleet, only one has we are on the side of good odds!
Shearwater's Photos - Main
Lesley, Kelly, John, Karol and David successfully transit the canal....a few misc shots
27 Photos
Created 13 March 2010
2 Photos
Created 12 June 2009

Port: West Palm Beach Florida