All Waypoints

LatLonBoat nameNoteCreated at
43º 47.262' N156º 21.744' ETumbleweedJuly 21, 2019 <BR/><BR/>Winds are just beginning to veer tonight, that is to move clockwise, giving us a chance to gain more easting, the past few days the winds have offered us the options of some variant of north or south so this is appreciated. Winds dropped this afternoon and the seas settled down a bit so we added a reefed genoa to the double reefed main and stays’l, Tumbleweed’ is responding. The sun has just set and it is an overcast, chilly night, we are adding layers each day, I’ll see if I can add a seal skin parka to my wardrobe once we hit Dutch Harbor. Currently sailing at 5 knots, 45 degrees course over ground, winds 14 knots coming from 115 degrees. All's well on Tumbleweed. <BR/>about 10 hours  agoShow

42º 30.732' N155º 11.928' ETumbleweedJuly 20, 2019 <BR/><BR/>Another day of slogging NNE, into the wind with large seas that slow our pace and force is to climb over wave after wave, each slowing is for a moment before we can move forward, caught in a jerky rhythm. Occasionally we are hit by an outsized wave that knocks us off course and sends a shudder through the whole boat. But overall we are managing fine, not as swiftly as we would like and with a little more north in our heading than would be ideal but all things considered we are making good progress with the weather at hand. Dutch Harbor is looking more and more likely as a stop over, still another 1500 miles ahead but we are thinking it will be a nice respite. We have another 4 or so days of this weather in the forecast and then the promise of downwind sailing after that, so the forecast is looking positive..All's well on Tumbleweed. <BR/>1 day  agoShow

41º 22.752' N154º 8.904' ETumbleweedJuly 19, 2019 <BR/><BR/>Sailing to weather over 2 meter seas we are riding the line between too much speed, which has us crashing into the waves each big impact a bone jarring thud, or not having enough speed up so that we lose way as we hit a wave and take a moment or two before we gather way and get moving again. Comfort is a factor, at higher speeds it is chaotic and loud below making it hard to sleep. But we need speed to keep ahead of a low pressure system building to the that’s the game of the day, a bit more sail for a while then maybe ease the main sail a bit later, fine tuning and searching for the best angle and right amount of sail. This morning we had our best sunrise of the passage, full on brilliant colors that washed over the horizon. Tonight we had a break in the Grey for a glimpse of the sun going out in a glorious red fireball. At the moment making 5 knots, heading of 60 degrees, winds in the low 20s.All's well on Tumbleweed. <BR/>2 days  agoShow

40º 7.248' N152º 34.176' ETumbleweedJuly 18, 2019 <BR/><BR/>Today’s excitement was a visit by the US Coast Guard. They appeared quickly with no warning, not transmitting on AIS, and hovered close by while asking us about our journey and vessel’s details. Comforting and intimidating. They would appear to be far from their home patrol grounds but I guess they roam the whole North Pacific. We had a mostly sunny day with fair winds and seas making good time sailing to weather in 15 to 20 knots of breeze. We have sailed more miles to weather since leaving japan than we have since leaving the US. The seas were mostly calm today so minimal bashing though it is pretty noisy below decks and we fell off by several degrees, settling Tumbleweed and easing our angle of heel, to make lunch. We appear to b on the edge of the shipping route that takes the great circle across the top of the pacific, several massive cargo ships passed in the distance today. Just passed the 3500 miles to Port Townsend mark, heading 70 degrees, 15 knots of breeze, 4.5 knots over ground.All's well on Tumbleweed. <BR/>3 days  agoShow

37º 26.688' N148º 35.58' ETumbleweedJuly 17, 2019 <BR/><BR/>Winds have veered and we have been getting in our easting today. Took advantage of a calm spell this morning to end for end the Genoa furling line, although new it somehow picked up a nasty bit of chafe that is now safely aft of the clutch when Genoa is reefed. Sorting through all the excellent advice regarding our starter troubles, think we have some good time d leads. Temperatures have dropped dramatically, for the first time in memory I’m on watch tonight wearing a wind breaker, rain pants, fleece and thick watch cap and boots. As we head north I’ll keep adding layers until I can’t move. Currently making 5.5 knots, 60 degrees COG, 17 knots of wind. 3620nm to Port Townsend. All's well on Tumbleweed. <BR/>4 days  agoShow

37º 26.688' N148º 35.58' ETumbleweedJuly 16, 2019 <BR/><BR/>Today we struggled against the Kuroshio current trying to gain more easting while being shoved 20 degrees to the north. The current is this area is strong but we are reaching its edge and are now starting to see our heading and course over ground closing with each other, with our course setting us more to the east. We had light winds at sunrise but since then we’ve been blasting along clear we hauled with winds in the mid teens over a variety of sea states, earlier in the day we were slamming over steep choppy seas but they have since mellowed and we are currently sailing in much more comfort over gentler waters. A 99 percent waxing moon is lighting up the clouds and will keep us company much of the night turning the sea silver in its path. We have been bedeviled by our engine, starter problems of some sort, and put out a request for thoughts on troubleshooting to friends and have been heartened by the in depth and generous responses. Think we have a few excellent possible solutions to check through tomorrow. Feeling grateful for our community of fellow sailors. Miles Smeeton’s memoir of the sailing life “The Sea Was Our Village” gets it right with the title. All's well on Tumbleweed. <BR/>5 days  agoShow

36º 3.246' N148º 17.196' ETumbleweedJuly 15, 2019 <BR/><BR/>As forecast we had a wild ride for much of last night, many hours at 35 knots gusting to 50 with large waves, making for some white knuckle moments but mostly Tumbleweed seems to revel in these sort of conditions and we made good progress while bashing along. The low blew through quickly and as the sun began to light up the sky the winds died and we were left with not enough wind to make way in the large seas that are the aftermath of these fronts. We rolled, drifted and tried to make the best of it for a few hours. We have had some issues with our engine starting, we continue to trouble shoot the source of the problem, so we’re happy when the engine started on the first attempt. We motored all afternoon, due east, as the grey skies broke apart and gave us blue skies for a change. For several hours we were surrounded by a large school of what looked like skip jack tuna, the same type w saw yesterday, also calls bonito and when fermented, dried and smoked then shaved into golden flakes, are the base for dashi. We admire them and recommended they keep well clear of Japan to avoid the soup pot.tonights forecasts for light winds a welcome break, we’ll motor a few more hours charging batteries, running the watermaker, and getting closer to the Kuroshio current. A near full moon is on the rise, 3825 miles to Port Townsend. All's well on Tumbleweed. <BR/>6 days  agoShow

35º 59.352' N147º 5.256' ETumbleweedJuly 14, 2019 <BR/><BR/>We had a restful night and easy day of light wind sailing under grey and of late rainy skies. In the late afternoon the winds nearly died but are now building as another low pressure system begins to pass over us. Winds currently in the low 20s with a forecast to build through the night. Much of the day we have been in the Kuroshio current and our speed overground has been as high as 8 knots even with light winds, we will see how that impacts our speeds tonight. Currently sailing under staysail and trys’l flying northward. All's well on Tumbleweed. <BR/>7 days  agoShow

35º 34.914' N144º 55.53' ETumbleweedJuly 13, 2019 <BR/><BR/>Last night proved to be pretty wild with winds at a steady 30knots gusting to 50 knots with challenging seas. We headed downwind for several hours through the worst of it and other than a few crashing waves that sent water into the cockpit it as all pretty manageable. Two flyers go fish were washed aboard and died in the mayhem. At dawn the winds moved on and the waves stayed behind leaving us sloshing about for a couple hours until the winds filled in and we were able to get back underway. Today has been uneventful, with grey skies and moderate winds in the mid teens. Currently passing over an area of confused seas that we attribute to the Kuroshio current. This afternoon we were visited by three dolphins that put on a short post lunch performance before blasting off to whatever exotic destination these characters seem to always been hurrying to. This morning we woke to only 4005 miles remaining to Port Townsend but Douglas realized that number did not include the 85 miles from the mouth of the strait of Juan de Fuca to port Townsend. That has been corrected but I feel somehow conned by having a sub 4K distance yanked away from me. All's well on Tumbleweed. <BR/>9 days  agoShow

34º 25.194' N143º 26.808' ETumbleweedJuly 12, 2019 <BR/><BR/>Our fair weather days of sailing have given way to a steady 25 knots with gusts to 38, the seas whipped up and the skies flat grey with passing showers. We are down to double reefed main and stays’l and yet making six knots. We’ve seen a couple mean spirited waves, including one that launched much of lunch from the sauce pot into the space behind the stove where plates are stored, a low point of the day - black beans with tofu worked into all sorts of corners and crevices. Forecast is for a spirited evening, the upside is we are making miles to our first destination point, getting us away from Japan and the summer typhoon alley, a point roughly 1000miles east that we plan to hit before heading north. All's well on Tumbleweed. <BR/>10 days  agoShow

33º 22.59' N141º 47.088' ETumbleweedJuly 11, 2019 <BR/><BR/>We have had good conditions over the past 24 hours, mostly settle seas with winds around 10 knots from the NE, making 5-6 knots over ground with bursts to 7 knots that we guess we owe to the current in our favor. Mid afternoon saw a lull to 6ish knots bringing us down to only a few knots of speed but at the moment we are hustling along at 6.5 knots, with a heading of 36 degrees. Winds are forecast to veer and bring us closer to our desired course closer to 90 degrees, winds to stay in this range for a few days, very happy with these conditions. Along with giving us a little push the Kuroshio current is keeping the waters around us warm so we are enjoying warm conditions and long summer days, sun was casting a glow as early as 3:30 this morning. Another batten pin failed today, our 5th so far, but with calm seas it was an easy repair. I don’t. Know what Schaefer Spec’d for the part but must be low grade stainless. 4,177 nm to port Townsend. All's well on Tumbleweed. <BR/>10 days  agoShow

32º 40.95' N140º 40.116' ETumbleweedJuly 10, 2019 <BR/><BR/>Coming on watch at 04:30 as the sun’s glow was beginning to light the sky, Hachijo Shima island stood out in silhouette off our port bow. It stood watch over us through the day and only began to recede in to the haze of clouds in late afternoon. We spent Last night and much of today wrestling our miles from the sea. With 20 knot headwinds much of the past 24 hours and choppy confused seas we have had many ungentlemanly hours of going to weather. It is a slog bashing into the seas hour after hour with water crashing over the deck and at times washing all the aft up and over the dodger and spraying inside the cockpit. Below it is like being hit by a wrecking ball during the worst of it but this afternoon the weather has eased and we are making a comfortable 5 knots on a heading of 120:degrees, not perfect but getting us away from the Japanese coast. We’ve made 330 miles VMG, or actual miles toward Port Townsend since departing Wakayama. All's well on Tumbleweed. <BR/>11 days  agoShow

33º 25.206' N138º 49.668' ETumbleweedJuly 9, 2019 <BR/><BR/>This is actually our third day out, I should have listed yesterday as day two, time is already flying by. Although the forecast called for light winds we have seen winds hovering around 20 knots since last night. We are crossing the Kuroshio current and have been experiencing short choppy waves while sailing closed hauled making for a bumpy ride, last night was boisterous and we were knocked around a bit. Last night we replaced a pin that holds one of the mainsail battens, it had rusted through, tonight we repaired a section of the Genoa furling line that chafed last night, a first, not sure what caused that, will monitor closely. Otherwise we are doing fine, just the usual issues with starting a passage after so many months of coddled sailing. We were visited by four what I took to be whales, three doing a synchronized surface and dive near where I watched from the cockpit. Maybe Minke whales? Still not clear of Japanese waters but making good progress and are well out of the shipping channel tonight. All's well on Tumbleweed. <BR/>12 days  agoShow

33º 35.862' N137º 9.324' ETumbleweedJuly 8, 2019 <BR/><BR/>At six yesterday morning we pulled away from our slip at Wakayama Marina City Yacht Harbor after watching Catherine and Bruno on Nosy Be depart a few minutes earlier for Dutch Harbor Alaska. We motored out under a sky coming alive with daybreak and light winds, flat waters. It was a Sunday and already the bay was filled with commercial and recreational fishermen along with the never ending convoy of commercial vessels running from Osaka bay out to ports all over Japan and the world. Our goal for the day was to get off shore and away from shipping traffic and all the seaweed and man made debris closer to shore to that end we took on extra diesel and planned for motoring when the winds proved too light for sailing. We motor sailed part of the day until late morning winds let us sail most of the afternoon but as they died late in the day we motored all night to dodge ship traffic and move away from shore. The engine is handy but such a noisy beast it was nice to have winds again this morning and be able to sail today. It’s beautiful here, silver overcast skies, 13 knots of wind sailing close hauled. Tonight we will tack toward Tokyo bay a few hours before tacking back away from shore to head east. 4400 miles to Port Townsend, feels really good to be at the beginning of this long planned and awaited passage. All's well on Tumbleweed. <BR/>14 days  agoShow

34º 9.312' N135º 10.674' ETumbleweed <BR/>April 20, 2019 <BR/> <BR/>Team Tumbleweed has arrived at Wakayama Marina City, ending another chapter in our visit to Japan, putting our adventures in the Seto Naikai behind us and beginning our preparations for leaving Japan to sail back to the Pacific Northwest. We have had our nephews joining us for the past couple of weeks in the Inland Sea and have had a super time visiting various islands with them. It has been a highlight of our travels in the pacific to have them aboard, we have had more adventures and done more sightseeing with them than in all the time since we left Chichijima. I think Junko and William would be a good match in terms of how to fit as much fun as possible into a day, never enough daylight hours! We are spending the next few days wrapping up final small tasks and provisioning for the next leg.Wakayama Marina City has nice facilities, friendly staff, and is close to many restaurants, and a train station. Haven’t found a grocery yet but I’m confident there is a large market not too far based on the many restaurants in the area. No electricity or water at the visitor’s dock but only $10 a night, we are happy to jerry can the water for that cost. Our target departure date is June 27, though there is a tropical depression starting to spin up that looks like it might head this way and check our departure date. We have thoroughly enjoyed our time in Japan. Chichijima, Kyushu and the Seto Naikai have all been great places to visit and travel through, we highly recommend adding Japan to your short list of cruising destinations. Once we are back in the states I plan to add a page to the blog with some of our observations on cruising here. All is well on Tumbleweed. <BR/> about 1 month  agoShow

34º 13.554' N134º 24.474' ETumbleweedApril 20, 2019 <BR/> <BR/>We had a calm few hours motoring - again! - from Shodoshima to Hiketa Ko. We tied along a seawall in an active fishing harbor, and walked all over the village. A beautiful day, many fields of rice growing, winding small village streets. Harbor was active but otherwise not much was open, we walked nearly a mile out of town to find an open restaurant. Very calm night, well sheltered by breakwaters. We tied to the end of a large Tee dock. All is well on Tumbleweed. <BR/> about 1 month  agoShow

34º 28.602' N134º 10.974' ETumbleweed <BR/> <BR/>April 19, 2019 <BR/> <BR/>Very light winds gave us another few hours of motoring to Shodoshima, a compact town along an open bay. We moored alongside a pontoon with two large signs with illustrations of motor yachts that said in Japanese and English that mooring was forbidden. We asked for permission at the nearby cafe and the owner said we could stay one night. There is a large commercial dock and we had first moored on the seaward side of that and it was incredibly rolly even with very light winds. A Japanese sailboat arrived at night and anchored in the bay. Shodoshiima is a large island with several recommended places to moor, this location has an excellent grocery store and a nearby itzakaya where we had a nice dinner. Wish we had more time to explore the island, there is a network of buses that run to a soy sauce museum and various olive oil museums etc. Lots of walking and exploring though and a pleasant night along the pontoon. All is well on Tumbleweed. <BR/> about 1 month  agoShow

34º 27.426' N133º 58.344' ETumbleweedJune 17, 2019 <BR/> <BR/>Several hours of motoring and motor sailing into headwinds, dodging various commercial vessels and seaweed as we tend to do in this region, through scenic waters with beautiful islands and shoreline. We had reserved a space along the ferry pontoon at Nashima and arrived mid day with time for a bit of exploring before dark. Entrance is clear and well marked, good depth along pontoon, no water or electricity, experienced high winds and choppy waters that had Tumbleweed bucking like a spooked bronco for one night and another day that was uncomfortable. We deployed all fenders, and our two car tires to keep us off the pontoon. The island is a great place to wander and explore several museums designed by Tadao Ando with various minimalist art installations. James Turrell is the running favorite. Our nephew Hayden joined us, it was a bit of an epic day to take the ferry then a series of trains to Narita. We now have two of our nephews with us and are having a great time. Tomorrow morning we head for Shodoshima and will then make our way to Wakayama. All is well on Tumbleweed. about 1 month  agoShow

34º 24.516' N133º 31.482' ETumbleweedJune 13, 2019 <BR/> <BR/>Yesterday we motored from Onomichi to Shiraishima a small island that has excellent walking paths and a several nice shrines. The small village, like many we have visited, feels like it is in decline. It has a nice beach and a few businesses along the water and looks like during the tourist season it gets a bit more lively, but at this time of year it is pretty dormant. We checked out Moo Bar that had been recommended as a nice cafe run by a couple of expat cruisers but it was closed. We found space along a large pontoon. The main comment that comes up about this location is that there are several unmarked drying rocks 100 meters or so south of the entrance. We noted some rocks as we approached near low tide, hard to imagine they are not charted, they are fairly large and prominent. We kept a bit to the east and had no issues. There is a small market in town and a harbor with a ferry on the other side of the island, but that seems pretty small with mostly local fishing boats. Highly recommend the walk along the ridge, we walked to the temple with what looks like a stupa and followed a trail up behind the temple complex. about 1 month  agoShow

34º 24.474' N133º 12.174' ETumbleweedJune 6, 2019 <BR/> <BR/>We arrived mid day to the small marina at Onomichi, light winds, clear skies, calm water, motoring over from Miyaura. The city of Onomichi is focused on shipbuilding and the waterfront is chock a block with dry docks, warehouses, cranes, and a mix of active and what appear to be abandoned yards. The current can run as much as 6 knots when the tide is running so we timed appropriately and arrived at slack tide. The marina is small but mostly empty, we caught a bit of current as we entered our slip that challenged our docking skills, we made a quick decision to roll with a port side instead of a starboard tie. A good reason to have lines and fenders on both sides! We have already experienced massive wake from passing ships and ferries, as I started to type this post I heard a massive bang and ran on deck to see that we were bucking like a crazed horse and the anchor had pounded into the floating dock. Douglas and I quickly reset our lines and think we’ll be ok but a note to fellow cruisers to have ample fenders and consider the strong current for this spot. Looks like a great city to explore and will be a good base to have our nephew Will join us for couple weeks of exploring the Seto Naikai. All’s well on Tumbleweed. about 2 months  agoShow

34º 14.838' N132º 59.652' ETumbleweedJune 5, 2019 <BR/> <BR/>We are spending the night in Miyoura on Omishima island, home to the 3rd most important Shinto shrine in Japan and also to a museum that houses a stunning collection of samurai armor and swords, many from the 12th century. At one time the shrine was visited by samurai who wanted blessings for battle, when they had success they would return to the shrine and donate their armor and swords. The craftsmanship is exquisite. The shrine itself is beautiful in the understated manner of a shinto shrine. We were witness to the blessing of a new automobile. The priest invited the owners, two women, into the shrine where an acolyte beat a large drum for a couple of minutes, then the priest chanted for several minutes and offered a blessing to the women while the acolyte played a flute, then the priest walked with the women over to the new red station wagon and blessed the car. To an outsider it seems sacriligious that on the grounds of the temple where samurai came to have their weapons blessed as they went to battle, modern people come to have their cars blessed. It was a sunny, windless day coming over from Horie, working our way around endless convoy of commercial shipping that runs through the main channels in the area. We had a large ship pass us then do a full 180 so quickly we questioned whether what we were seeing was actually happening. Kirk Patterson sent us a note on the best dock to moor to as we were approaching the port, but in the haste of approach and using the coordinates that Bosun Bird had posted we ended up at the overflow pontoon and not at the best option available. If we had followed Kirk’s advice we’d be tied to the main, long pontoon that is in a state of good repair and has lots of room with full bumpers, instead we are tied to the overflow dock that is somewhat of a chafe menace - if you wind up here I’d recommend getting a tetanus booster. The hardware on the dock has mostly rusted to a point of disintegration, large chunks of metal flaking off and scattered all around. At the low low tide of the day we briefly touch bottom and so sat for a few minutes looking over the heavily rusted hardware to the beautifully maintained ferry pontoon with two yachts moored alongside. Tomorrow we make for Onomichi where we’ll get organized for our nephew Will’s visit. All’s well on Tumbleweed. about 2 months  agoShow

33º 54.432' N132º 44.934' ETumbleweedJune 4, 2019 <BR/> <BR/>We are tied to a pontoon at Horie after a long day of motoring with a small amount of motor sailing. Light winds, and flat seas most of the day, beautiful landscape and a constant flow of ship traffic. I don’t recall ever seeing so much ship traffic, much of it moving in or out of the Kanmon Kaikyo, a bit unnerving but never any issues. Horie is a sweet spot, we reserved a spot on the main pontoon and shared it with three boats and their solo crews, all guys we had met at Nagasaki. A nice welcome. The restaurant across the street takes payment for the night’s stay, its specialties are ramen and udon. We walked around the neighborhood, bought a few things from a small local market and marveled at the old houses while the sun set with a strong warm cast to the sky. All’s well on Tumbleweed. about 2 months  agoShow

33º 59.43' N131º 43.272' ETumbleweedJune 3, 2019 <BR/> <BR/>A challenging start to the day leaving Shinmoji for Otsushima, wind on the nose, choppy seas and a slight current against us, had us moving along at 3 knots for the first couple hours of the day. We slowly gained wind and favorable angle as the current began to ebb and then to work in our favor. By afternoon the winds had faded and the seas calmed to near flat while the constant flow of ships continued to flow in and out of the Kanmon Kaikyo. Mid afternoon we arrived at Otsushima and after docking at the large pontoon with the ferry on one side we set out to explore the island. Kirk Patterson recommended this spot to us and we’re thankful for his suggestion, we would not have visited otherwise. The island was the training base for the kaiten submarine effort during the war. These were human operated torpedoes, kamikaze subs, used at the end of the war. There is a thoughtful museum on the grounds of a memorial for the men who died and other artifacts of the training facilities on the island. The island itself is beautiful and set among a small group of other islands off the shores of Honshu. After being waved away from the fishermen’s pontoon we docked on the pontoon used by the ferry. This time of the year the island is very quiet and we wondered about mostly by ourselves. Highly recommend a visit. All’s well on Tumbleweed. about 2 months  agoShow

33º 53.436' N131º 0.21' ETumbleweedJune 2, 2019 <BR/> <BR/>We have transited the Kanmon Kaikyo and are now in the Seto Naikai, the inland sea. This is something we have been looking forward to for some time and marks a new chapter in our visit in Japan, we have left the coast of Kyushu and for the reminder of our time in Japan we’ll be sailing in the waters that are surrounded by the main island of Honshu, as well as Shikoku with Kyushu to the south. The Kanmon Kaikyo passage is about 10 miles long and around a kilometer wide, which doesn’t seem very wide when you are on the water with cargo ships passing. It averages 550 vessels a day and we passed through with cargo ships, oil tankers, car carriers, of all sorts and sizes, the car carrier was a complete monstrosity, many of the ships appear to be local coastal cruisers delivering goods around Japan. There is a well organized official group, the Kanmon MARTIS, that organizes all the large vessels and checks in with vessels. We discussed our transit plan with MARTIS and they recommended we pass under the bridge a half hour later than we had projected based on a two sources for the slack tide under the bridge. MARTIS was correct and we had a knot of current against us that switched to total slack water a few minutes after we passed under the bridge. Our plan of the day was to exit the strait and sail to Otsushima a small island about 40 miles to the north. But we completed our passage near noon and faced strong winds on the nose, and high choppy seas. We realized that we would not be able to make Otsushima by nightfall so we diverted to Shinmoji marina. A little over 4 miles from the north end of the Kanmon Kaikyo, we arrived a little after 13:00 and had a few local sailors direct us to a slip. A note for cruisers, as others have noted there are many fishing nets across the bay and there is a well marked pass to the marina, the nets are shown on the New Pec charts. Today as we entered the bay we had to dodge many fishing markers in addition to the marked nets. Many of the markers - these are the floats with flags attached that appear just about everywhere in Japanese waters - were in the marked channel. There were not a lot of slips available but we are in a nice spot and are looking forward taking a bike ride shortly, the marina has bikes to borrow. All’s well on Tumbleweed. about 2 months  agoShow

33º 59.286' N130º 49.158' ETumbleweedJune 1, 2019 <BR/> <BR/>Yesterday we attempted to leave Odo Marina in Fukuoka but after a couple hours of pouring rain, strong headwinds and choppy seas we returned to port. We would not have been able to arrive at Ainoshima before dark and sailing after dark in this area would most likely result in calamity. This morning we made another attempt, the sun was out, the wind was gone and the sea was flat as a pond. Although we were forced to motor, I’m not sure it’s realistic to actually sail in this area if you want to avoid the dreaded handawarra seaweed. Douglas was on the bow all day constantly directed us around patches of the stuff. When we’ve sailed through the seaweed we’ve just collected it on the prop and as soon as we started the engine we had a large clump wrapped around the shaft. A yacht a couple miles ahead of us and a yacht a couple miles behind us both stopped for some time and I’m guessing it was to clear their props of seaweed. There are several spots recommended in this area to stage for yachts wanting to transit the Kanmon Kaikyo, Kirk Patterson recommended this harbor to us and it is an excellent spot. We are very close to the passage into the Seto Naikai and the harbor is well sheltered, the seawall we are tied to one of the nicer designs, many massive rubber strips to keep us off the concrete. Tomorrow morning we will attempt to make our way through the infamous Kanmon Kaikyo. This is one of the main passages into the inland sea, the Seto Naikai in Japanese. Today we watched a continuous convoy of tankers, cargo ships, barges and all other sorts of vessels from humble to massive. Tomorrow morning we’ll join the line up and aim to pass through at slack tide. This afternoon after the tide had turned we were contacted by the Kanmon authorities and warned that the current speed was running 7 knots and would be dangerous for us. I think we’ll have a pleasant evening here and the weather looks good for tomorrow. All is well aboard Tumbleweed. about 2 months  agoShow

33º 35.55' N130º 18.702' ETumbleweed<BR/>May 20, 2019 <BR/><BR/>A beautiful departure from Hirado this morning, light just beginning to break over the town, the harbor waters pond still, we timed our early departure for slack tide to exit Hirado and it all went smoothly. Hugging the a coastline mostly hidden by mist and fog we had light to very very light airs most of the morning. Twice the winds built to a 12 knots and we had the Genoa up for a heart beat, but as soon as we were set the winds dropped and we motored on. The coast line has many islets and rocks offshore and the coastline is stunning, it was a gorgeous morning until we were swallowed by fog. Once again we were bedeviled by seaweed and we have a slight vibration leading us to believe we have a chunk of something wrapped around the prop. On our approach to Fukuoka we passed into a rain front and made our way to Odo Marina in an absolute deluge. With light winds and a 1.5 knot current on the beam we were mostly parked onto the dock by the elements. Now that we are all settled in the winds have built and the rains continue to pour. Spring yachting at its finest! Odo looks like a great marina to have as a base while we explore Fukuoka and work at a couple projects. All's well on Tumbleweed. <BR/>2 months  agoShow

33º 22.272' N129º 33.288' ETumbleweedMay 16, 2019 <BR/> <BR/>Another beautiful morning on the water. We had attempted to sail to Hirado yesterday but were chased back by strong winds on the nose and rough seas, we had a narrow time window to make the tide and that was not going to happen. We also picked up sea weed on the prop and removed a massive ball back at Uku. We arrived at Hirado mid afternoon, timing our arrival with slack tide. There are strong currents in the approach to the harbor and at near slack we passed through a strong rip line, at max current it is reported that the current can run to five knots, a port worth planning for. We tied to the guest pontoon with a roof, on the west side of the pontoon there are now extra large fenders, of the type used for ships, and this gives enough room to keep the shrouds from tapping the roof. On the east side a sailboat would need really large fenders or a clever method to keep from rolling hard and tapping the roof, there is a ferry dock next to the guest pontoon and we rolled a lot when we first arrived before we finalized our lines. There is also a guest pontoon further in the harbor that has no roof. Check in was simple, at the visitors center, staff was really friendly. It is free. Hirado is a lovely village and we walked the narrow side streets after arriving. There is a castle on the hill, our view astern. All is well on Tumbleweed. <BR/> 2 months  agoShow

33º 15.39' N129º 7.746' ETumbleweed<BR/>May 14, 2019 <BR/><BR/>Light winds in the morning had us sailing much of the passage today but in the afternoon winds built to 11 knots and we were able to sail for a couple hours. It was nice to have the sails up after the past few weeks of light winds. The sea was mostly flat and a mist or light fog in the air made the islands in the distance look like they were brushed in place with a light wash of water color. Uku Shima is a nice compact village behind multiple sets of break waters. Just inside the main double break waters is a another breakwater that shelters a small marina with slips for perhaps 20 yachts. There are only a couple small local fishing boats in the marina tonight. One of the nicer places we've had for the night at 1130 yen. Water and power are available. We walked around the village and enjoyed the views to the sea. We've been told it is possible to rent electric bicycles to tour the island. All's well on Tumbleweed. <BR/>2 months  agoShow

32º 53.316' N129º 36.306' ETumbleweed<BR/>May 13, 2019 <BR/><BR/>We set out from Nagasaki after lunch, light winds kept us motoring all the way to Ikeshima. Weird hazy light all afternoon, a lot of moisture in the air and the light was flat and grey. Kind of perfect for Ikeshima. We arrived late in the afternoon to Ikeshima and island that was once a coal mining community that abandoned the island and mine when the mine was no longer profitable. The entire town and mine stand much as they did when the people left, the mining equipment rusting and falling apart, the homes and apartment buildings covered in ivy and slowly falling to ruin. 300 or so people are reported to be living on the island and we saw signs of habitation in various spots, a few people in various apartment buildings, people in houses at the top of the hill, people in buildings by the ferry dock. Our spot for the night is along a dock with nice large rubber bumpers. The dock sits in a well protected basin and is near windless with flat water. A slightly eerie spot for the night but surely interesting. Several ferries have come and gone since we arrived, each ferry might have a single person on it, the infrastructure seems out of proportion with the population. All's well on Tumbleweed. <BR/>2 months  agoShow

32º 44.616' N129º 52.206' ETumbleweedMay 5, 2019 <BR/> <BR/>This morning we arrived at Nagasaki after motoring over calm waters with no wind from Nomo Ko. It is overwhelming to be in our first real city since we passed through Auckland in March of last year. We have spent the past year in the islands mostly in small towns, remote anchorages or villages. This is quite the change. A busy port with a large shipyard and many shipworks, docks, repair facilities, ferry terminals, etc lining the waters. We are tied up at Dejima marina in the heart of the city. This is the spot where the Dutch had set up their trading post and where they were confined in Japan. A lot of history in this city. We plan to spend a week visiting. <BR/> 3 months  agoShow

32º 35.016' N129º 45.222' ETumbleweed<BR/>May 4, 2019 <BR/><BR/>We arrived at Nomo Ko after several hours of motoring from Ushibuka. Big day for fishing, the last weekend of Golden Week and the waters are calm so many boats hit the water today. Nomo Ko is a lovely village, very quaint. We attempted to dock at the floating pontoon recommended by previous cruisers but were asked to tie at the sea wall instead, the pontoon is to be used only by small, light craft. A Japanese cruiser moved to another pontoon and gave us his spot on the sea wall so we can go ashore, otherwise it would be tricky getting to shore at low tide, the top of the wall was well above us as we arrived. We spent a couple hours wrangling fenders and line and fender boards and tires to try and keep us from being gouged by oysters and barnacles. We lost a bit of gel coat at the bow coming in when we barely touched one of the rubber fenders bolted to the wall but covered in rough shells. Extra large fenders are on the wish list for Nagasaki. We'd been warned and thought we were covered with fenders, but I don't think you can have too many or too large of fenders. These harbors are set up for working fishing vessels not yachts. We were reminded again of how kind and gracious people are in Japan. The port manager, after asking us to move, which we completely understood and after we apologized for inconveniencing him, came back a few moments later with beers and ice for us. And the kindness of the yachtsman who saw our predicament with the sea wall and no access to a ladder, etc. and somehow negotiating the ability to move to another pontoon that would accept his lighter boat but not Tumbleweed, both examples of the interactions we are experiencing during our visit. All's well on Tumbleweed. <BR/>3 months  agoShow

32º 12.03' N130º 0.624' ETumbleweed<BR/>May 3, 2019 <BR/><BR/>Another near windless day, though beautiful with clear sunny skies, as we crossed from the harbor of Sato Ne to the town of Ushibuka back on Kyushu. There is a series of concrete basins inside the massive breakwater that shelters the town and harbor, we worked our way back to the innermost basin but found that it was filled with fishing boats. In the next basin we found a spot along the sea wall and made ourselves fast at 13:30 this afternoon. The infrastructure is geared toward fishing vessels, mostly on a scale a couple magnitudes larger than Tumbleweed. We arrived at low, low tide and the bollards were far above our heads, we were down below aligned with the barnacles. A fisherman came to our rescue and Douglas was able to heave a line up to him and he helped get us tied alongside. Though the innermost basin if full, the outer enclosures are mostly empty and there were many options for tying alongside. We had a walk through town and stopped to buy produce from a little truck that was stopped in one of the neighborhoods, a woman gave us some sort of candy and the owner of the truck gave us some bread. We got good laughs out of the neighbor ladies. Later we stopped at a smoke house to ask what they were smoking and if we could buy some, it smelled delicious. A man sold us a bagful of small smoked fish for a dollar. We found out later they are for katsuobushi, so we'll make some soup and dashi broth from them. Tumbleweed is now smelling of sweet smoked fish. The town was very quiet as we walked around, it is Golden Week, but it might be quiet in general. All is well on Tumbleweed. <BR/>3 months  agoShow

31º 50.814' N129º 55.338' ETumbleweed<BR/>May 2, 2019 <BR/><BR/>We are tied to a concrete sea wall in small fishing village on the island of Kami Koshiki Jima, some twenty miles off the coast of Kyushu. We had a sunny, near windless day crossing over from Kasasa, avoiding kelp and arriving in the early afternoon. Until recently there was a large hotel here that kept a pontoon in front that was reported by previous cruisers to be a good spot to tie to, but we were told by Kirk on Silk Purse that the hotel had recently closed and the pontoon was no longer available so we were prepared to find a spot on the sea wall. A man from the fuel station drove over with his son and directed us to a spot where we could tie up. It is really kind when we people take the time to help out us confused sailors. We knew we could tie up somewhere but we want to avoid spots that are preferred by or reserved for the fishing fleet. We had a short stroll around the neighborhood, this end of town is where the local fishing fleet and fish processing plant is located. It is pretty quiet here as in the other towns we've visited it appears commercial fishing is in decline. We stopped into the local market for a few supplies. While walking around Ravens were working over our cockpit looking for snacks, when we were a few hundred yards away they took flight leaving snack wrappers and a shiny marlin spike that were in the cockpit bag out on the cockpit benches. They also left a present to show their unhappiness at finding no snacks. All is well on Tumbleweed. It's a beautiful, wind still night and we are looking forward to a glass of wine and some pasta. <BR/>3 months  agoShow

31º 24.954' N130º 8.064' ETumbleweed<BR/>April 30, 2019 <BR/><BR/><BR/>Pouring rain, grey, chilly, green,gorgeous rugged shoreline. Are we in Japan or back in the Pacific Northwest? Yesterday a gale was blowing and there was a high seas warning so we stayed in Makurazaki. Today the winds had died and the seas calmed but for a large gentle swell. With winds at 3-5 knots we were forced to motor and keep a watch for the floating seaweed. We arrived at the Ebisu hotel at 13:30 and were surprised to see Ken on the Yacht Happy, who we met in Yamagawa, waving to us from the hotel. He was tied to the dock and came down to move his his yacht to the shorter end tie and let us take the long side of the dock. Very nice, as we would have not fit on the end. We are at the dock now and enjoying the luxury of being on a dock vs a sea wall with fresh water available. We have not had the convenience of fresh water to the boat since Fiji. This is a big deal for Tumbleweed. Depending on weather, and depending on how addicted we become to easy water, we'll either stay another night or head for Sato Ne in the morning. All is well on Tumbleweed. <BR/>3 months  agoShow

31º 16.104' N130º 17.64' ETumbleweed <BR/>April 28, 2019 <BR/> <BR/> <BR/>We had a short day on the water, out of Yamagawa at 08:20, tied to the wall at Makurazaki at 13:30 - quite a change from the passages we've been doing the past few months. Fluky winds would gust to 20 knots then drop to 8 knots, one moment dead downwind, then on the beam with seas that were confused with a growing swell that had us surfing the last hour and past the breakwaters. Most likely influenced by the topography, we passed a couple headlands, a volcano and the valleys between, the southern end of Kyushu is basically open to the East China Sea and the Pacific so all that ocean is rolling up on the shelf here. Makurazaki is a fishing village and looks quiet from where we've tied to a sea wall surrounded by fishing boats, a couple streets off the water there are several large stores, the biggest grocery we've seen since Saipan and a mega pachinko parlor. We attempted to tie to the a green floating dock we thought was a municipal dock but were waved off by man driving a forklift. With winds gusting to 20 knots as we tried to tie along the sea wall we cast an envious eye at the deserted green dock down the way. We had planned to go to Kasasa tomorrow but the forecast is calling for stronger winds than today so I think we'll stay put until that system passes. All's good on Tumbleweed. <BR/> 3 months  agoShow

31º 12.192' N130º 38.028' ETumbleweed<BR/>April 21, 2019 <BR/><BR/>Yesterday as the sun dipped behind the hills of Yamagawa we tied up to a green industrial floating dock, killed the engine and enjoyed the quiet murmur of a small Japanese town. It was wonderful to be at rest. The last three days of this passage were stretched out by sailing through a gale into light airs, twice fouling our prop requiring dives overboard to hack out clumps of seaweed and old fish net, and working against the formidable out flowing current of the Osumi Kaikyo. The seas around Kyushu are covered with floating mats of a devilish seaweed that absorbs all sorts of sea trash and wraps the propeller shaft up into massive balls debris. With light airs below our ability to sail and our prop fouled two nights in a row we were forced to wait for sunrise as the heavy out flowing current had us drifting away from our goal while the chartplotter lit up with AIS targets. At night we watched a steady stream of tankers, cargo ships and fishing vessels streaming in and out of Kagoshima, at times over 20 vessels with many within a few miles of where we were drifting. Yesterday I dove the prop as the sun rose, we were greeted by another massive pod of dolphins and motor sailed for Yamagawa. The current was strong throughout the day and we kept watch for ships and kelp, keeping free of both. It felt incredibly good to be at rest last night and get deep sleep. The crew of Tumbleweed is looking forward to a couple months of day sailing in Japan. All's well on Tumbleweed. <BR/>3 months  agoShow

30º 45.456' N131º 39.024' ETumbleweed<BR/>April 19, 2019 <BR/><BR/>Closing in on Kyushu. This morning we had a gorgeous sunrise with dolphins swimming all around us, calm seas, very light winds. All lovely and comfortable but wishing for more winds at the moment, we passed over the Kuroshio this morning, the infamous heavy current that sweeps up from Okinawa and runs up the east coast of Japan. We are nearing the Osumi Kaikyo, the passage that we need to transit to get to Kagoshima. There is heavy traffic in this area, at the moment there are 17 vessels on AIS. Yesterday we had light winds and were motor sailing until we hit patch after patch of floating seaweed that jammed up our propeller. We have been able to mostly clear the prop with heavy forward and reverse of the engine but after doing that several times we are going to try drifting and sailing as we can until we are out of the seaweed area. Hoping to reach Kagoshima late tomorrow afternoon if the winds pick up tonight. We plan on hoisting our light air Genoa later today to see if we can make better progress. All's well on Tumbleweed. <BR/>3 months  agoShow

28º 6.708' N136º 0.174' ETumbleweed<BR/>April 16, 2019 <BR/><BR/>A beautiful morning of sailing after a night lit up by a half moon. Today the sun is out and we are drying out and getting warm. Seas are much settled compared to yesterday. We are in our passage groove with our routines. We are on beam reach with winds out of the north, making our way due west. A low is forecast for tonight, we are to pass through the edge of the system. Expecting stronger winds and rain. Will enjoy the perfect weather while we can. All is well on Tumbleweed.<BR/>3 months  agoShow

28º 6.366' N137º 49.344' ETumbleweed<BR/>April 15, 2019 <BR/><BR/>Our second day on passage to Kagoshima has given us a wide range of weather and sea. A couple hours ago we passed through the line between two weather systems, the winds dropped, it rained lightly, we were surrounded by walls of grey. We passed quickly to the system coming from the north. In moments Tumbleweed did a 180 degree turn and sauntered back the way we had come from, No banging of sails or much to indicate we had turned around completely except we were keeping an eye on wind direction and our heading. The winds have built back up and we were just hitting 8 knots. We've decided to fall off a little and now the sailing is much more comfortable. We have seen a couple cargo ships and a large fishing vessel but otherwise not much going on out here. Trying to get used to the cold weather, last night on watch I wore boots, long underwear, a fleece jacket, two wool shirts and foul weather gear. I am missing the good ol' days of sailing in sandals in a tee shirt and shorts. Currently heading 270, due west, winds in the low 20's, making 6 knots. All is well on Tumbleweed. <BR/>3 months  agoShow

27º 34.326' N140º 16.17' ETumbleweed<BR/>April 14, 2019 <BR/><BR/>Yesterday morning we had a beautiful departure from Chichijima. We left the dock with 8 knots of sheltered wind that turned to winds in the low 20's once we left the shelter of the harbor. We had brisk sailing with good weather that turned cool forcing us into our foul weather gear through the night. Chichijima was one of the more lovely islands we've visited in the Pacific and we were sad to depart. We met wonderful people and enjoyed great hospitality during our visit. This morning we are sailing in organized seas with a gentle one meter swell, making good time under Genoa, stays'l and double reefed main. Our plan is to head westerly to the Okinawa islands and then turn north to take advantage of weather and the Kuro Shio current. At the moment we are heading more NW than projected but winds are veering throughout the day and at some point we'll jibe. Brilliant bioluminescence last night and many sea birds, including a couple albatross. Feels good to be back at sea. All is well on Tumbleweed.<BR/>3 months  agoShow

27º 5.916' N142º 12.006' ETumbleweed<BR/>March 12, 2019 <BR/><BR/>We arrived yesterday afternoon to Chichijima after a boisterous last day of sailing. It feels good to be in Japan, it feels like we've been working our way towards this island since we left Port Townsend. Our final day at sea gave us the the wildest weather of the passage, winds of over 20 knots with large seas with heavy rains for most of the final morning, we hove to 10 miles off the entrance to the bay and waited for the weather to pass. After a few hours the weather calmed and we had a nice sail into the harbor. We are tucked away in the inner harbor behind a breakwater a few minutes stroll from town. Clearing in was incredibly polite with two Coast Guards waiting at the wharf to take our lines followed by the usual cast of characters. At 5pm there were chimes over loudspeakers and a soothing woman's voice issued some sort of calm statement. At the grocery store "Please release me, let me go" was on rotation with a host of other classic crooner hits from I'd guess the 50's. Vending machines abound stocked with beer, ramen, soft drinks, canned coffee and various snacks. We found one garbage can, slightly hidden in an alley but the town is spotless. We plan to spend a couple weeks here and then watch for a weather window to Kyushu. All is well on Tumbleweed. <BR/>4 months  agoShow

25º 27.324' N142º 40.674' ETumbleweed<BR/>March 10, 2019 <BR/><BR/>We are closing in on Chichijima, currently 112 miles to the south. This passage has been notable for its light winds and gentle seas. As we enter the home stretch we are hitting a patch of rough weather, the seas are ugly and the winds temperamental, running up into the 20s before dropping to 11 or 12 knots, all the while veering from 10 degrees to 150 degrees at the moment. The veering winds have left confused seas and we are making our way through large troughs on the beam and the somewhat frequent big smacker that jolts Tumbleweed as thought we've been Tee-boned by a truck. We are now north of the tropics, wearing long pants, layers of warm clothes, and socks! Bizarre. This morning the sun rose to reveal curtains of rain showers and a grey world. Udon is sounding real good. If the weather holds we are on track to arrive tomorrow.. All is well on Tumbleweed. <BR/>4 months  agoShow

24º 3.12' N143º 3.774' ETumbleweed<BR/>March 9, 2019 <BR/><BR/>We are 200 miles south of Chichijima making our way ever so slowly into wind and waves. Weather is altering to plan but a bit slower than forecast. We have had to revise our arrival from Sunday to Monday. We won't be able to arrive in Chichjima during daylight at this speed. But the weather is forecast to continue to veer and become more favorable. We tried raising more sail and being more aggressive with these conditions but it was really uncomfortable and hard on Tumbleweed. We're in no hurry and we'd only be rushing into unfavorable conditions. Highlight of the past day was a visitation last night by a cheeky bird that first rooster on the stern pulpit and then hopped into the cockpit and seized control of the space for over an hour. I abandoned my spot tucked up in a corner near the companionway and the bird spent several minutes standing on my light up kindle. I would try to shoo it away and it would flap its wings and drift around the bimini then alight in some spot or another. Relieving itself frequently. It spent a period of time in love with its own reflection in the companionway boards, then tried to find a way out. Finally I lifted it gently on a seat cushion, now soiled, and escorted it off the boat. What passes for entertainment out here. We are under stays'l and trys'l crawling along at 2 knots, mostly comfortable though there is the occasional extra large wave that tosses us around. Looking forward to arrival. All is well on Tumbleweed. <BR/>4 months  agoShow

23º 26.016' N144º 6.03' ETumbleweed<BR/>March 8, 2019 <BR/><BR/> Winds have picked up and we are moving along easily, it is overcast and cooler in this area with occasional rain showers. The forecast for the next couple of days as been adjusted slightly and we are now projecting to arrive Sunday mid-day. We've been trying to control our arrival to take advantage of favorable winds and avoid headwinds which are forecast to be strong in the Chichijima region, it looks like we'll be able to continue plodding along and avoid the headwinds. Our plan was to arrive at our current location on Saturday and be lined up for the final stretch but although we are sailing under only a stays'l and trys'l we are still managing 3.5 knots. Turns out that is just as well and we'll be in good position for the next couple of days. We are currently 245 miles south of Chichijima, sailing comfortably. Yesterday was an excellent day on the water, gentle seas, sunshine and the company of a variety of sea birds that spent their day fishing around us. All is well on Tumbleweed. <BR/>5 months  agoShow

22º 14.208' N144º 20.586' ETumbleweed<BR/>March 7, 2019 <BR/><BR/>320 miles south of Chichijima in very light winds drifting NW with a little current. A repeat day of a repeat day of a... Weather forecast continues to hold and Saturday is looking like a good day to break free for Chichijima. Looking at a Monday arrival. Yesterday a large lavender billed booby took possession of the bow pulpit. I watched at is swooped past the bow on a couple of recon runs checking us out before landing and spending the rest of the day and all night gripping the bow, rolling with the waves and preening constantly. I was surprised to see it still up there this morning as the sun rose, still preening, glancing around constantly and gnawing away at whatever sort of critters must make there home on a large sea bird. It was a large white bird with black markings along the wings, yellow feet and a massive lavender beak. Hopefully it did not leave to disgusting of a mess at the bow. All is well on Tumbleweed. <BR/>5 months  agoShow

21º 45.696' N144º 34.152' ETumbleweed<BR/>March 6, 2019 <BR/><BR/>Light winds and a slight current are keeping us moving in a slow curve to the NW. Favorable winds are on the way and it looks like Saturday will be our day to make our move to Chichijima. If the forecast is correct we will be able to take advantage of veering winds over the weekend and avoid headwinds as we make for the Chichijima harbor. Currently 350 miles south of Chichijima. Weather is cooling as we near the northern end of the tropics - another 100 miles and we'll be out of the tropics. Last night I wore a long sleeve shirt and watch cap.. All is well on Tumbleweed. <BR/>5 months  agoShow

21º 6.888' N144º 49.068' ETumbleweed<BR/>March 5, 2019 <BR/><BR/>Another day of very light wind. We are drifting northward against a light current, perhaps a knot. We have lost sight of the volcano and this morning saw the last of the moon. Chichi Jima is 387 miles to the north and the winds are forecast to appear tomorrow. Until then we'll continue to enjoy the beauty and solitude. All is well on Tumbleweed. <BR/>5 months  agoShow

20º 55.236' N144º 45.69' ETumbleweed<BR/>March 4, 2019 <BR/><BR/>We have drifted south toward the gorgeous volcanic cone of Farallon de Parajos most of yesterday and then caught a bit of wind and perhaps another current to drift our way back north of our furthest point this morning. Our course as described on our chart plotter looks like a child's scribbled line, first northward then south toward the volcano then looping off to the west to make a lazy arc back the the apex. The volcano continues to be beautiful and this morning a bit after 5 the slight sliver of the moon rose through a golden haze to climb into the delicate blue light of the morning sky. Although we are both looking forward to arriving in Chichi Jima and the promise of a great island to explore we are content at the moment to be caught here in time. All is well on Tumbleweed. <BR/>5 months  agoShow

20º 48.702' N144º 55.212' ETumbleweed<BR/>March 3, 2019 <BR/><BR/>The active volcano Farralon Pajaros is still in view to the south, the wind barely brushes the surface of the sea, gentle swell continues to slide past us rolling us gently from side to side. We are waiting for wind which is forecast to build in our favor over the next couple of days before turning to head winds out of the north. We debated motoring for a couple of days to get in a better position for the winds but decided against that idea, we tend to be conservative with fuel and two additional days of motoring on top of the day we spent motoring to Maug and then to get ourselves north of Maug would use more than we'd like. We'll wait, if the winds come up a couple more knots we'll try our genneker, a large lightweight sail much like a spinnaker. We haven't had much use with that sail during our ocean passages, it tends to collapse with the swell. There is a slight current here that is drawing us south, we had a few knots of wind and were making slightly under a knot but last night the current overwhelmed our efforts and we've moved back to where we had shut down the engine yesterday. It is incredibly beautiful out here, the ocean is calm and all is so quiet. The sight of a volcano in the distance adds a level of magic to the scene. All is well on Tumbleweed. <BR/>5 months  agoShow

20º 56.754' N144º 55.368' ETumbleweed<BR/>March 2, 2019 <BR/><BR/>There are times when through the writings of others and our interpretation of what a chart presents us we create and image of a place in our minds that is counter to the reality. Our image of Maug was one of those times. We passed by Pagan imagining that we'd instead anchor at Maug, enjoy the remote splendor a few days while waiting out a few windless days. Maug is the most remote spot on earth I can recall visiting, and there is a splendor and beauty to it that puts it in a category of its own. The remains of an ancient volcano, now reduced to three large chunks of islands in the Pacific. Descriptions maintain that there is an anchorage tucked up against the eastern most island on a shelf of rock hard against the steep shore and it technically exists but I can't imagine anchoring there, there is slight shelter, though enough to dramatically reduce the ocean's swell. The reality is that the depths in the crater go from over 400 feet up to a shelf of 75 feet and then a couple boat lengths later run up onto a steep scree covered shore that runs steeply to the summit. The water covered many large boulders and the remains of a wrecked yacht are also in the water and here and there on the shore. We had read that a large yacht was discovered here several years ago but to see the remains along with the forbidding conditions sent us on our way. Maug was gorgeous and I am glad we stopped, to take Tumbleweed into the crater of an extinct volcano and to pass by the cliffs of the islands was a rare experience. But I can't recommend anchoring there. Approaching Maug the winds died and we motored for much of the day to arrive there by late afternoon. We left as the sun began to close the horizon and motored through the night to put some distance between us. We are now floating on a calm sea with a few knots of breeze fluttering about. We are 400 miles from Chichi Jima and need to decide how we'll spend the next few days that are forecast to be windless followed by a couple days of northerlies. I highly recommend a visit to Maug, and regret not stopping at Pagan. All is well on Tumbleweed. <BR/><BR/> 5 months  agoShow

17º 16.692' N145º 23.184' ETumbleweed<BR/>Feburary 28, 2019 <BR/><BR/>Day one of our passage to Maug we've had excellent conditions since departing Saipan. Super Typhoon Wutip has reset the weather conditions and the NE trades that we rode from Majuro have been replaced by souther easterlies, giving us excellent conditions for our passage to Muag. We sailed basically due west from Majuro and have pivoted at Saipan to head due closet to due north to Maug. The change in the wind direction is incredibly fortunate. Instead of beating our way to Maug in high seas we are currently on a beam reach with winds hovering around 20 knots and settled seas enjoying outstanding sailing. We maxed 120 miles in the 20 hours since we departed Saipan and have 165 miles to go to Maug on a heading of 355 degrees. We had planned on stopping at Pagan, and will likely regret not visiting the island, but we want to take advantage of these excellent conditions as long as we can. Last night we had a 44 percent waning moon lighting the seas, it was a nice welcome back to the sea. All is well on Tumbleweed. <BR/><BR/> 5 months  agoShow

15º 14.022' N145º 44.088' ETumbleweed<BR/>Feburary 14, 2019 <BR/><BR/>Day Eleven. An epic day to end an epic passage. After 10 days of full throttle sailing in the NE trades we rounded Tinian island to the south of Saipan in hopes of finding shelter in the lee of the two islands on our way to the harbor. That was not to be and we spent 9 hours tacking our way up the west side of the islands arriving to Saipan harbor just as the sun set in a glorious display. We might have made more tacks and sail changes yesterday than we have done since we left Opua. Saipan harbor is pretty dialed, excellent markings and top notch harbor staff who were in constant contact. They directed us to a fine anchorage with no other vessels nearby where we dropped the hook at 19:30 and set well in muddy bottom. We had pasta with a walnut sauce and dried peas for dinner, with a cabbage salad of course. This was a passage for the books, we've never had such a full throttle set of continuous days, in such big seas. Tumbleweed was great and though we took on some water through various events and small leaks everything else held together surpassingly well, a testament to how strongly built and well designed the Valiants are. Check in was smooth and professional, Douglas walked to the Marina and we are hoping to find a berth there for the next couple of weeks. All is well on Tumbleweed. <BR/><BR/> 5 months  agoShow

13º 29.988' N147º 40.926' ETumbleweed<BR/>Feburary 13, 2019 <BR/><BR/>Day Ten. Trying to make our way north, stealing back a few degrees by sailing to weather in rough seas has made for a pretty bumpy ride this morning, our daily run dropped to 141 miles and we spent several hours bashing hard into the waves. We have fallen off a few points to the south of Tinian and plan to work our way up to Saipan's harbor from the shelter of the islands. A Thursday arrival is looking far less likely though Friday is looking good. Valentine's Day at sea! What could be more romantic? Temperature in the cabin has dropped to 81 degrees this morning and I wore a long sleeve shirt on watch last night, feels good to have it a little cooler. 172 miles remaining. All is well on Tumbleweed. <BR/><BR/> 5 months  agoShow

12º 47.04' N149º 43.242' ETumbleweed<BR/>Feburary 11, 2019 <BR/><BR/>Day Nine. 138 miles made good in the last 24 hours. We often talk about how the highs out here are pretty high, and that the lows can be a real drop off the emotional cliff. On night watch with good conditions, the night sky open above and moonlight silvering the seas around us it feels like we are riding a magic carpet, Tumbleweed bucks and slides, is hit by a large wave, slews off a wave, comes back up and charges forward. I can spend hours enjoying that performance, it is thrilling and what makes sailing offshore so appealing. These NE Trades we've been riding since we left Majuro have made for some of the swiftest sailing we've had, day in and day out just charging along. If our speed drops below 6 knots it isn't for long. Tumbleweed is so solid in these conditions, we hold on tightly and do our best to keep sails trimmed and properly reefed and enjoy the ride. The emotional lows out here are compounded by feeling so distant from shore, and realizing that whatever is happening at the moment must be dealt with and worked through at that moment. There is not time out to walk down to the local coffee shop for a breather, or to step into the next room to ignore when something is heading south. When you pop open a hatch, for just a moment, in what seems like fine weather, when you haven't seen a wave crash over the boat for hours, and yet when just at that moment with tortillas on the stove and lunch about to be served, a massive wave crashes aboard and a couple gallons work through the hatch, onto your head, all over the stove dripping down and flooding the galley sole, it might give one pause for a moment or so to reconsider this whole sailing thing. But after the salt water has been sponged up, clothes changed, lunch reset, sitting in the cockpit enjoying lunch a game of backgammon, emotions level out and it's easy to once again see the magic of the experience. 272 miles remaining to Saipan, heading of 297. All is well on Tumbleweed. <BR/><BR/> 5 months  agoShow

11º 59.7' N152º 12.648' ETumbleweed<BR/>Feburary 10, 2019 <BR/><BR/>Day Eight. 160 miles made good yesterday, quite the day. Mostly good weather with strong winds in the mid-20s and organized seas. Last night on watch I was admiring the night sky and checked the radar for squalls, all looked clear and I went back to reading. A few minutes later we were hit by a strong squall that appeared suddenly. Winds so strong I was pinned to the leeward cockpit seat for a few moments, it was a struggle to get to the helm and try to get so to fall off the wind. For several moments the winds were screaming and the lee rail was buried, water rushing back into the cockpit. Douglas was immediately awake and on deck to lend a hand. A big adrenaline rush for us both as we worked to take in the Double reefed Genoa. I saw winds of 35 knots and the gusts were larger. We were hit again an hour later but I was able to get to the helm quickly and with only a stays'l and trys'l flying it was much more manageable. Douglas reports several more squalls on his watch this morning. They are strange in that they materialize, hit us, then move off to disappear. Otherwise, a pretty typical day out here, feeling good about our mileage and looking forward to Saipan. 423 miles remaining, heading 280 degrees. All is well on Tumbleweed. <BR/><BR/> 5 months  agoShow

11º 14.7' N154º 53.652' ETumbleweed<BR/>Feburary 10, 2019 <BR/><BR/>Day Seven. We made 136 miles yesterday through volatile seas and a handful of squalls, the excitement level of this passage has dramatically moved up. Once again the night brought bouts of heavy winds north 30 knots sustained, with gusts into the 40s, several rain showers, then clearing of the night skies. Yesterday was a mix of a rain, cloudy skies and high winds followed by a clear sky with winds in the high teens in the late afternoon. All this keeps us on our toes trying to guess the best sail configuration. Last night we kept it conservative with the stays'l and trys'l, this morning the winds dipped again and we unfurled the double reefed Genoa. Making good time at the moment, the sun is out and it is shaping up to be a good day. 580 miles to Saipan on a heading of 288 degrees. All is well on Tumbleweed. <BR/><BR/> 5 months  agoShow

10º 34.512' N157º 1.758' ETumbleweed<BR/>Feburary 09, 2019 <BR/><BR/>Day Six. Another 150 mile daily run, we are enjoying constant strong winds and making good progress toward Saipan. At times the winds and seas have been a bit much and last night we were forced to fall off course to keep from being inundated, we had some large seas break over the cockpit soaking us and filling the cockpit. Once we fell off a few degrees we settled down a bit and avoided the worst of the seas. It was a bumpy, wet night, and dark with no moon. I could hear the rush of a large wave and would brace for the impact, there would be a roar and then the ocean would overwhelm us, smack hard against the hull and crest up, dropping a few gallons in the cockpit and spraying whoever was on watch. It was never much water that made its way into the cockpit, it was more the blast of the sea and know we might be in for a dousing. Fortunately it's warm and once soaked it wasn't that bad to finish off my watch and then clean up and try another set of dry clothes. We'll work today to get back the miles lost when we fell off to the south, with this weather Saipan is looking like a next Friday arrival. All is well on Tumbleweed. <BR/><BR/> 5 months  agoShow

10º 14.952' N159º 35.208' ETumbleweed<BR/>Feburary 08, 2019 <BR/><BR/>In the past 24 hours we had a run of 148 miles, making good speed with the benefit of the current and strong winds. The weather continues to move through various cycles, we'll have patches of bigger seas, as we are in at the moment, then hours of more settled seas. Squalls materialize quickly, with gusts into the 30s and a good dousing of rain. We will soon cross the halfway point. Currently 963 miles to go, COG 275, making 7.5 knots at the moment, but that tends to fluctuate, we've had periods in the 5 knot range as well that pull our average down. We continue to sail under a double reefed genoa and stays'l. The times the winds dip down into the teens are short lived and when the squalls hit we are glad to be reefed and ready to run off. All is well on Tumbleweed. <BR/><BR/> 5 months  agoShow

9º 49.038' N162º 6.618' ETumbleweed<BR/>Feburary 07, 2019 <BR/><BR/>An hour after extolling the glorious, perfect sailing we were having we began to be run over by ninja squalls. At a distance they looked like the weakest of rain clouds, something that would drift over us with a gentle wash of a few rain drops, instead they would crash into us with gusts over 40 knots, causing us to round up and accelerate for a few thrilling minutes. These bookended our lunch break causing us to eat quickly with an eye to the NE as a disarmingly light grey cloud made its way to us crashing into us like a gleeful bumper car, dumping rain and sending us running off downwind. That has been our excitement of the day. The first hit late morning and the winds had dropped into the high teens, we were contemplating taking out the two reefs we have in the Genoa just as the first hit, glad we stayed reefed down. Sometimes I believe Neptune is listening and has a bit of humor... We are now running with a current giving us a one knot boost that should continue most of the way to Saipan. A free 24 knots a day! Who says there is no free ride? We have spent the morning cruising along near 8 knots, comfortably. Yesterday was a 150 mile day under double reefed genoa and stays'l, heading is 282 degrees, speed over ground is currently 7.2 knots, distance to Saipan is 1012 miles. All is well on board Tumbleweed. <BR/><BR/> 5 months  agoShow

9º 8.388' N164º 34.92' ETumbleweed<BR/>Feburary 06, 2019 <BR/><BR/>A good day of sailing to report. We passed two small atolls last night and our next waypoint is Saipan, 1200 miles to the west. Excellent conditions and comfortable sailing, double reefed genoa and stays'l, making 6.7 knots at the moment, COG 281. It feels a bit cooler than Majuro and we are each able to get good sleep in the off watch. 84 degrees in the cabin at the moment, it was mostly in the 90's when in Majuro so this feels pleasant. All is well on Tumbleweed. <BR/><BR/> 6 months  agoShow

8º 37.164' N166º 45.156' ETumbleweed<BR/>Feburary 05, 2019 <BR/><BR/>Getting settled into passage mode. We had 146 miles of excellent sailing in the past 24 hours. We passed the island of Kwajalein last night, at first a very dim glow on the horizon that grew to twin bright orbs off to starboard for several hours. No missiles incoming or directives issued from the military, seemed pretty calm over there. We were hit with several sneaker waves yesterday, we would get these perfect combinations of wind and sea that would twist us quickly into the seas putting us beam to just as a large wave smacked us, I was doused with a good bucket of water twice. Once when I was over confident in the uniformity of the seas and had a portlight open below - it was like someone outside had taken a bucket and tossed it neatly through the portlight right at my head. The other times were in the cockpit, with no warning we'd head up just as a wave came crashing aboard. Since passing Kwajalein the seas have settled considerably but we still have decent winds. Making 6 knots, COG 270. All is well on Tumbleweed. 6 months  agoShow

8º 10.212' N169º 9.864' ETumbleweed<BR/>December 19, 201 <BR/><BR/>It feels good to be back at sea, on passage, sailing to Saipan after 6 weeks visiting Majuro. We cleared out Friday and sailed to Anemwonet where there are several nice moorings. We scrubbed the dinghy, put Tumbleweed into passage mode and enjoy a couple quiet nights before departing yesterday. We are in the NE trades the blow consistently across Majuro and on to Saipan. So far the winds have been consistently in the 20 knot range, something dipping into the teens, and sometimes running up into the higher 20's but it's been consistent without squalls or major changes. Seas are uniform and moderate with an occasional good smack, this is wonderful blue water sailing. Forecast is for these sort of conditions to Saipan. The full passage is about 1500 miles. Last night we had another encounter with a fishing vessel, this one had lights and we could see it from miles away, but no AIS and continually changed direction until it lay across our path, we tacked south to get clear of it and it came to a stop. Our attempts to communicate were fruitless. Kind of a mad 1am scramble but we are learning to be wary of fishing vessels and try to give them as much space as possible. Points for using light! All is well on Tumbleweed. 6 months  agoShow

7º 6.168' N171º 22.44' ETumbleweed<BR/>December 18, 2018 <BR/><BR/>We arrived yesterday afternoon in Majuro capping our epic 28 day passage from Fiji. It feels really good to be on a boat at rest. We had a mix of weather coming in our last day, had some fine sailing in the final hours, gave into the temptation to motor through most of our last night. Cary from SY Seal met us at the mooring field and helped us with what I think was the last mooring, for which we are very grateful - it was partially submerged and we would have never found it. We met with customs yesterday and will go in to see immigration shortly. Sleep deprivation caught up with us and we were out pretty early. Majuro looks interesting and all that we have met have been friendly. Christmas vibes are incongruently in full swing here, lots of classic holiday tunes on the radio, decorations out in the tropical sun. 7 months  agoShow

6º 40.062' N172º 39.846' ETumbleweed<BR/>December 16, 2018 <BR/><BR/>The strong winds that had been forecast to sweep us along the final miles to Majuro have not appeared. Last night we had a forecast for several hours of 30 knot winds and never saw anything over 18, mostly much lower. Today the winds are back to low teens or single digits directly downwind of our course and we are slogging along at a few knots. Tomorrow's much anticipated arrival is looking to be receding back to Tuesday. Today is overcast with a long period swell coming off the starboard quarter. It's a fairly settled motion today and though we're both a bit disappointed that the prospects for arriving tomorrow look poor we are comfortable and it's not raining. All's well on Tumbleweed. 7 months  agoShow

6º 16.758' N173º 33.996' ETumbleweed<BR/>December 15, 2018 <BR/><BR/>Another night of squalls, high winds and blasts of rain. All time sea going gust high of 60 knots with several gusts at 50, sailing in high 20's for several good stretches. Thankful to be under only trys'l and Stays'l, we romped along comfortably. This morning the winds have died down and the sea state has calmed to a slight swell with only an occasional large bump every few minutes. We continue to roll from side to side but not as abruptly - this has been a 26 day mega core workout, I think I'm clenching my stomach while sleeping. A visit last night by a cranky bird that wanted to set up shop on the end of the boom, shrieking out its good find to all friends, neighbors, winged fellows in the area. I tried firm voice directives, bright lights in various patterns calculated for mental anguish and finally brandishing our mop. No reaction other than more indignant squawking. In the end I resorted to draping the ends to the mop over its head, that was too much and it flew off and took up a position off the starboard stern quarter where it cursed me for some time. A gorgeous moon last night that once it dropped behind the horizon left the sea utterly black. All's well on Tumbleweed. 7 months  agoShow

5º 33.12' N174º 59.916' ETumbleweed<BR/>December 14, 2018 <BR/><BR/>This morning all is calm, winds are light and we are making our way slowly north west to Majuro. Last night we had winds mostly in the high teens with a few squalls that swept through and as they do hit us with blasts into the high 30's holding steady for a half hour or so in the 20's. Kept us on our toes and made the watches go quickly. We have been aiming to arrive in Majuro Monday morning but briefly toyed with the ideas of a Sunday arrival, but it would be close and we would like to arrive mid day, so instead of picking up the pace we are going to see how we can lose a few hours between here and Fordyce channel so we don't have to heave to through the night. Yesterday was Douglas' bday, it was far to rough for cake and pizza, he has a rain check burning a hole in his pocket. He loves being on passage and loves boisterous weather so I think he had a great day. All's well on Tumbleweed. 7 months  agoShow

4º 42.282' N176º 22.26' ETumbleweed<BR/>December 13, 2018 <BR/><BR/>Bit of a wild morning today. We just passed through a squallgusting to 45 knots, heavy rain and large seas. Glad to have only the stays'l and trys'l up. We had a good punch thrown in a few times, one strong enough to shoot a few ounces of water through the galley hatch, something that has never happened before. Early this morning was beautiful and ideal sailing, calm seas, brilliant night sky. We are through the squall now and it is much calmer, fair skies ahead. Last night we dealt with a crazy fishing fleet. Near 22:00 I watched a vessel pop up on AIS, I marked its position 7 miles away and kept an eye on it, then another vessel 8 miles in the other direction turned on its AIS. Our course took us well between them. Soon two other vessels had turned on their AIS, we were now sailing through a line of four vessels, none with any lights of any kind on, with 2 vessels to port and 2 to starboard with a healthy gap in the center, all drifting at a knot or so eastward. I was nervous that not all the vessels were on AIS or had turned them on. None of the vessels were lit. As we made to pass through the center of the fleet I noticed a very faint red flashing light directly ahead, of the sort that brought to mind a bicycle light. The boat turned on their AIS as we came closer. Only 1.3 miles away from it, still no lights on deck. I had jibed twice to give some distance between us and thread the fleet with more room and quickly jibed again and tried to make out the vessel with binoculars. Other than the faint red blinking light the vessel and the rest of the group were dark. Thankfully they all had AIS, baffling that they would keep their AIS off until we were upon them, also that they had no lights. A word of caution to others sailing this area. All is well on Tumbleweed. 7 months  agoShow

3º 32.778' N177º 45.648' ETumbleweed<BR/>December 12, 2018 <BR/><BR/>The weather is very settled today, a nice change following the bumpy ride we've had the past few days. Winds are 12 knots out of the east, we are making 4 knots. Managed to tear the topmost strop connecting the headboard on the mainsy'l to the car, will need to rig that back together to get the main back up. Will try a dyneema lashing. A much more pleasant ride with a gentle rock from side to side with none of the crashing cross wave train. Very distant lightning last night and a couple squalls but otherwise a good evening. We are now following the rhumb line to Majuro. All's well on Tumbleweed. 7 months  agoShow

2º 37.284' N178º 9.36' ETumbleweed<BR/>December 10, 2018 <BR/><BR/>We have been enjoying sailing for the past 12 hours. This morning brought steady winds in the mid-20s and have now subsided to 20 knots. For some time we were making 7 knots under trys'l and stays'l. Our goal is to time our arrival to Majuro behind a low that may or may not be forming, depending on wether the GFS or European weather forecast is correct. The GFS model is projecting a low over Majuro with winds between 40-50 knots, the European models shows much less wind. If possible, we'd like to arrive over the weekend but that depends on wether we can clear in or have to wait for Monday for customs and immigration. After so many days of drifting it does feel really good to be sailing, though the waters in this region are confused and we are dealing with 2 wave trains at the momen. One wave pattern is pretty hefty and every few minutes we get a pretty good wallop that staggers us for a moment with a loud bang. All's well on Tumbleweed. 7 months  agoShow

1º 45.822' N178º 23.124' ETumbleweed<BR/>December 10, 2018 <BR/><BR/>We are traveling through prime ITCZ weather. The past day has been overcast, rainy, frequent squalls of high winds, lightning in the distance followed by patches of no winds leaving us rolling heavily in large swell. Sunrise was beautiful, brilliant red piercing the cloud bank on the horizon, reflecting across the sea off the clouds above the western horizon. Forecast is for winds to fill in by Wednesday, though we are watching a low that is to develop over Majuro Thursday or Friday with potential high winds in the 40's. We'll aim to arrive at majuro on Monday if we get the winds that are forecast. All is well on Tumblweed, a bit bumpy, but well. 7 months  agoShow

0º 50.424' N178º 38.124' ETumbleweed<BR/>December 9, 2018 <BR/><BR/>This morning we are sailing again after a night with a bit of excitement. We had a large 190 foot fishing vessel near us most of the night, with a strong current - up to 3.5 knots - we drifted toward them in the middle of the night and unable to sail we motored for two hours to put some distance between us. Where we stopped had stronger current than where we started and we were soon racing eastward on the current. They decided the fishing looked better where we were and came at us at 10 knots, cutting across the 10 mile gap in quick order. We motored again. They picked up their operations and motored uncomfortably close. We hailed them to ask how we could best avoid their operation but the language gap was tough to cross. They asked our destination, we told them Majuro, but that we were heading due north. They repeated Majuro, then at 10 knots altered course on heading for Majuro and disappeared into the night. What passes for excitement out here. We also had several squalls roll over us, distant cloud to cloud lightning, heavy rains. The full ITCZ package. Overcast this morning but we have a steady 9 knots out of the NE and are making 5 knots at the moment. Seas are calm but have a bit more action to the swell than we've seen in the past few days. All's well on Tumbleweed.<BR/> 7 months  agoShow

0º 16.05' N177º 55.902' ETumbleweed<BR/>December 8, 2018 <BR/><BR/>We are back in the northern hemisphere. Yesterday we crossed, then drifted back south, then recrossed, then drifted south, then crossed again, the equator. At the equator we put aside our fears of a monster from the deep and took a quick swim. The water was as warm as a bath and the clarity of the water was like nothing I've experienced. We had little pockets of cool water below the surface but it was very warm at the top layer. Tumbleweed was drifting at a knot but with the stays'l we could just make way northward, then the wind would die and we'd slice south again. Feels good to be back in the North Pacific. We had a nice late afternoon meal, made a toast to Neptune and considered the past 21 months we've spent in the Southern Hemisphere. We last crossed the equator heading south on our passage from Mexico, it was a bit after 22:00 if I recall correctly and a fairly low key affair. All is well on Tumbleweed.. <BR/> 8 months  agoShow

0º 4.116' S177º 30.69' ETumbleweed<BR/>December 7, 2018 <BR/><BR/>After drifting east with a touch of south we have picked up a light breeze and are making our way northwest once again. We have given up around 30 miles drifting to the east over the past few days so it feels good to take some of that back. Only 4 miles until we cross back over to the North Pacific. Our days of the South Pacific idyll are about to be in our wake. Looking forward to all that the North Pacific has to offer. Forecast continues to be for light winds for a few more days but we hope that this light breeze holds out for a while, we are making 2.5 to 3 knots over the last few hours and happily in the right direction. All is well on Tumbleweed. <BR/> 8 months  agoShow

0º 11.376' S177º 2.844' ETumbleweed<BR/>December 6, 2018 <BR/><BR/>We are drifting 11 miles south of the equator. So close we could row Tumbleweed there. We could certainly fire up the engine and chug along there in a couple of hours. And we have been asked just why on earth we don't. We have enough fuel to make our way to Majuro if we needed to, we prefer to sail. The engine is noisy, hot and generally unpleasant. We love being under sail, especially out here when the conditions are nice. It is so beautiful out here with the calm undulating seas and the beautiful clouds ringing the horizon in all directions that it is not much of a hardship. It is hot and the slight swell does roll us from side to side, and we do have a current that is pushing us to the east at 1.5 knots, but otherwise we are fine with waiting a couple of days for the winds to fill in then we hope to have a pleasant sail across the equator and back into the North Pacific. Another very large pod of dolphins passed us last yesterday, it was an impressive sight, diving under the boat, doing mid air 360's, they were around the boat for close to an hour with wave after wave visiting for a bit then moving on. Last night in the dark I could hear a couple of them just out of sight off the stern surfacing and doing their explosive exhale/inhale then dive. It was like being followed by a pack of friendly dogs. All's well on Tumbleweed. <BR/> 8 months  agoShow

0º 15.06' S176º 25.902' ETumbleweed<BR/>December 5, 2018 <BR/><BR/>A pretty quiet and calm past day out here. We were again visited several times by pods of dolphins, both during the day and in the dark of night. The moon was an impressive orange sliver when it rose this morning, we had clear skies letting the stars shine clearly. We are inching our way toward the equator and looking forward to once again being in the North Pacific. Fifteen miles to go. With a bit of current in our favor and occasional puffs of wind that visit us we've been able to make some mileage by sailing but much of the past 24 hours has been more dependent on drifting in the direction of Majuro. The cycle is we'll have enough wind to sail for an hour or so, then the winds will wander off and we'll sit in a pocket of calm for a few hours, then on again. Forecast continues to be for very light winds in the area though there is some hope early next week to the north of us. All is well on Tumbleweed. <BR/> 8 months  agoShow

0º 44.718' S176º 8.538' ETumbleweed<BR/>December 4, 2018 <BR/><BR/>Light winds but with a solid current boosting us along we are inching our way to the equator. Last night we sailed ever so gently based the island of Beru, getting the smallest glimpse of the island off in the distance this morning, a thin line barely breaking the edge of the horizon. We had been working our way around the southern tip and along the east side of the island through the night with very little wind but enough current to push us along. Our friends the Dolphins paid us several visits again last night. The sliver of moon that rose during my night watch was spectacular, set against a sky vivid with stars. Seas continue to be smooth with long period swell rolling underneath. Currently making 4 knots with 6 knots of wind speed. All's well on Tumbleweed. <BR/> 8 months  agoShow

0º 15.06' S176º 25.902' ETumbleweed <BR/>December 5, 2018 <BR/> <BR/>A pretty quiet and calm past day out here. We were again visited several times by pods of dolphins, both during the day and in the dark of night. The moon was an impressive orange sliver when it rose this morning, we had clear skies letting the stars shine clearly. We are inching our way toward the equator and looking forward to once again being in the North Pacific. Fifteen miles to go. With a bit of current in our favor and occasional puffs of wind that visit us we've been able to make some mileage by sailing but much of the past 24 hours has been more dependent on drifting in the direction of Majuro. The cycle is we'll have enough wind to sail for an hour or so, then the winds will wander off and we'll sit in a pocket of calm for a few hours, then on again. Forecast continues to be for very light winds in the area though there is some hope early next week to the north of us. All is well on Tumbleweed. <BR/> 8 months  agoShow

2º 5.664' S176º 18.42' ETumbleweed<BR/>December 3, 2018 <BR/><BR/>Another fine day on our passage from Denarau. Light winds continue to be the rule, though this morning winds piped up to ten knots and we made a mad dash to drop the whisker pole, tack and hoist all sails for the hour or so we had those winds. They are in the process of dying down and our speed is slumping from our exhilarating 6 knots to a more familiar 4 knots. With these calm seas the 6 knots with a very slight heel felt amazing after days of very little wind. Yesterday we passed the small island of Tamana, a tiny spot so removed from the outside world, we could see the roofline of a large building, perhaps a copra shed, shining in the sun, but otherwise all was quiet. It took us hours and hours to make our way past the island, skirting a few miles to the south before tacking up along the east side. In the light winds of yesterday is seemed at times that we were stuck to the island and would carry it with us on our hip to the north. Last night we were visited by a pair of boobies, just as Ed and Fran predicted, they squabbled noisily from their perch on the solar panel, crabby angry squawking , resisted our attempts to dislodge them with a bright light, defecated shamelessly, and finally under threat of a waving mop, flew off. Also visited throughout the night by several pods of dolphins, one group timing their arrival with the sunrise, surfacing and breathing noisily with a background of golds and reds, South Pacific magic. All's well on Tumbleweed. <BR/> 8 months  agoShow

3º 10.758' S175º 32.682' ETumbleweed<BR/>December 1, 2018 <BR/><BR/>Slow going out here. Although the forecast calls for no wind we are enjoying sporadic winds that are keeping us moving north. Last night we had a few small squalls come through and were able to make 6-7 knots for a few hours, we also spent much of the night with the sails of the edge of collapsing. We are currently making 2 knots with winds hovering around 5 knots. We are on the edge of our ability to sail, below 2 knots we start to lose steerage and below 6 knots the sails are unhappy. But somehow we are managing to make mile after mile just on the edge. Maybe a current? The slow going makes for a kindly motion, we are just rolling gently side to side making tasks aboard a bit easier to pull off. Cabin temperature dropped from yesterday's high of 99 degrees to a comfy 90 degrees at the moment. Time for a pot of soup and a cardigan. All's well on Tumbleweed. <BR/> 8 months  agoShow

4º 9.6' S175º 32.508' ETumbleweed<BR/>November 30, 2018 <BR/><BR/>This morning a medium sized turtle swam up to and passed us. We were drifting north at 1.5 knots when Douglas spotted the turtle off the stern. It slowly swam up to the monitor wind vane and caught sight of its reflection, it spent some time admiring itself and trying to kiss the shiny stainless version of itself. It spent a half hour dawdling alongside us with a small collection of fish gathered around. The sun was ruthless and I think it enjoyed the shade. Soon it tired of our slow speed and paddled off for the horizon. Wind has been light since the last posting but picked up in the last hour while changing direction. We tacked the Genoa and are now making 4 knots or a tad better. Hoping this holds. Seas are very calm, there is a long slow swell that keeps us rolling when the wind drops but otherwise we are comfortable. Night sky was amazing last night. We spotted a Chinese fishing vessel in the distance but it has drifted off astern. All is well on Tumbleweed. <BR/> 8 months  agoShow

4º 53.166' S175º 29.214' ETumbleweed<BR/>November 29, 2018 <BR/><BR/>A calm day out here, light winds as forecast with a slight swell. Our average speed over the past 12 hours was 1.5 knots. We have just finished setting the whisker pole as winds have moved to the SE (by winds I mean air moving around 5 or 6 knots, "winds" sounds a bit large for the reality). This morning as the sun rose, pod of dolphins visited as they made their way west, a few would swim around the boat, spouting, diving under the hull, but as we were moving so slowly they soon were bored and moved on. It was a nice way to greet the new day. Moving slowly but still making progress, the whisker pole is adding a half knot or so but will come in handy as the wind fluctuates, below 6 knots the Genoa starts to flog and snap without the pole up. Current course over ground is 345, speed over ground is 1.5 knots, wind speed is 5.5 knots. I watched a large tanker move across the horizon last night but otherwise no sign of other vessels. All is well aboard Tumbleweed. <BR/> 8 months  agoShow

5º 50.31' S175º 41.052' ETumbleweed<BR/>November 28, 2018 <BR/><BR/>This morning as the sun rose we passed the small island of Nanumanga of the Tuvalu group. Winds from the north forced us to the west of the island by a few miles, it was a nice sight after so many days at sea. The morning light washed the sky with pastel pinks and light oranges with small well defined puffs of cumulus clouds on the horizon, like the cover to a Jehovah's Witness tract, missing only a lion sleeping peaceably among the sheep. The sea around Nanumanga was a bit choppy I think due to the elevation gain from the seabed to sea mount. Winds continue to keep us a bit more to the west than we'd like but we are still on the rhumb line to the Marshalls, we might have to make up some easting up the line but for the moment all is well. Forecast is for very very very light winds, as in maybe no winds, for the next few days. But we are in the doldrums, no surprise there. No lightning last night and only a couple short lived bouts of squally confused winds. All's well on Tumbleweed. <BR/> 8 months  agoShow

6º 36.576' S176º 59.976' ETumbleweed<BR/>November 27, 2018 <BR/><BR/>We had an excellent day out here. Only two distant flashes of lightning last night and a few rain squalls. Last night we had a few bouts of flakey winds but for the most part we settled in with 14 knots, sailing close hauled, making 6 knots. The winds can be contrary though and our overall average is much lower. We continue to be squeezed to the west by the winds, we try to snatch back whatever easting we can but find ourselves dodging the islands and atolls out here mostly on their westward side. When the wind is up the sailing is the stuff of South Pacific dreams, making 6 plus knots over gentle seas, but when the winds drop out the sails slat and bang, Tumbleweed wallowing side to side in the swells, and it begins to drill down on my nerves. Happily, the dead winds have mostly been occasional pockets and we are soon back to sailing. Very little out here. A boobie investigated us a bit this afternoon, three nights ago we crossed paths with the tanker "Andes", a coconut, a length of PVC pipe, an adrift fishing float and a plastic bottle that looked like it might have once contained iced tea, have all drifted past as well. Today we had our last avocado, the fresh fruit has gone - much of it killed by the heat. As I write this we are being visited by a pod of dolphins, about 10 have been playing around the boat for a few minutes, such amazing creatures. All's well on Tumbleweed. <BR/> 8 months  agoShow

8º 16.692' S178º 3.534' ETumbleweed<BR/>November 26, 2018 <BR/><BR/>One week down. Last night we passed Funafuti, it appeared as a warm glow against the clouds on the eastern horizon. We lingered some 15 miles to the west for hours as we dawdled through a series of squalls and were entertained by frequent displays of lightning. In the hours before sunset a series of cumulus clouds built along the horizon in all dirctions, towering systems with the tell tale black vertical bands of heavy rains under many of them. We had another night of squalls, light winds piping up in moments to 18 or 20 knots, winds chasing around us from all directions, intense rain. Light winds would come from the north for a few minutes then move around to the south, then back up to the north. At first each of us tried while on watch to keep working Tumbleweed around to stay on our northerly course but as the winds were light and we were only making 1.5 knots or so, each of us figured out in our time to drift in circles with sails furled until a legitimate breeze picked up. We were hit by many massive rain showers through the night. One that approached sounded like an army of beetles, the rain pounding the sea with such force it was like a million insects clacking until the rain hit and I was immediately drenched. Today was a slow but pleasant day out here, cloud cover helped to keep temperatures down, the few rain showers that passed were light. Winds are keeping us a bit further to the west than we had planned but we are still a bit east of our rhumb line. All is well on board. <BR/> 8 months  agoShow

9º 5.532' S178º 50.73' ETumbleweed<BR/>November 25, 2018 <BR/><BR/>A calm day of gentle South Pacific sailing after a wild night of lightning squalls that chased us for hours. Around 22:00 I glanced astern to see a massive black front had formed with pockets of lightning across the horizon. Douglas was off watch and trying to sleep but the lightning would fill the cabin with blasts of light that forced him from sleep. We spent several hours trying to dodge the weather front as it bore down on us. We were hit with a refreshing downpour before the winds died to a few knots. We ran under motor for several hours, the cabin was in the high 80's before we fired up the engine and opened the engine compartment to increase airflow, the heat in the cabin soared. I did not glance at the thermometer but I felt like a chunk of sous vide pork when I tried to catch some sleep. John Prine writes in "Mexican Home" about lightning burning the sky like alcohol and I saw the phenomenon he described - we'd have flashes of lightning that were like the blue flash of burning alcohol, sections of night sky going up like a flambé. Reefing, dousing, hoisting, reefing. It was a busy night. Today has been light winds, mostly under 7 knots. We are still making way - a surprising 4 knots or so on average. Slowly making our way toward Funafuti, should pass by the island early this evening. We have been trying to check in with a couple of SSB nets, we could hear Eric on Scoots very clearly but he could hear us this morning, we could also hear a yacht en route to NZ who came in fairly clearly but their yacht name was hard to catch, a mix of Kiwi accent and interference. All's well on Tumbleweed. <BR/> 8 months  agoShow

10º 20.49' S178º 43.05' ETumbleweed<BR/>November 24, 2018 <BR/><BR/>Lighter winds today, dropping down below 10 knots, but still on the beam and we are making 4.5 knots on average. Funafutti is 130 miles to the north, seas are calm, sun is tropically intense. Lightning in the distance last night, today we the classic tropical sea clouds, giant cumulus building on the horizon into towering structures that look like nuclear detonations. 95 degrees in the cabin, hatches and port lights covered with tinfoil is helping some. Cooking is a cruel chore, Mexican food for lunch today but will consider salads for the near future. Full moon last night, watching the moon set while the sun rose with the sky cast in pinks and oranges was magical. All's well on Tumbleweed. <BR/> 8 months  agoShow

12º 40.644' S178º 14.466' ETumbleweed<BR/>November 23, 2018 <BR/><BR/>We have had an excellent run of weather the past few days, sailing average over 7 knots often making hull speed of 8 knots with 13-15 knots on the beam settled seas, comfortable. Last night was a full moon, made for a beautiful night on watch. Temperature is climbing but we have decent airflow and fans at full. The restored wind generator and solar panels are keeping us topped up. One pod of dolphins joined us two nights ago, many flying fish and sea birds. All's well aboard Tumbleweed. <BR/> 8 months  agoShow

16º 51.528' S176º 50.79' ETumbleweed<BR/>November 21, 2018 <BR/><BR/>We set sail from Denarau, Fiji for Majuro in the Marshall Islands yesterday. With headwinds we added a few miles to the 14 between the marina and the pass, tacking our way south. It was a glorious day to be on the water and with the mild headwinds the tacks were pleasant and it felt like a Sunday outing. After being in marinas the past couple of months it was ideal weather to work out a couple of gremlins. We cleared Navula pass around 17:30 and made a bit of westing to get us away from the reefs and islands west of Viti Levu. Last night and today continued the pattern of light winds, we've average 4 knots and at this time can still see the outer islands of the Yasawas. We'll be some time clearing Fiji. We have a large 80 percent waxing moon, it reflected off the clouds and was beautiful last night, it set around 4 this morning, red and glowing. A good beginning to the passage. Winds forecast to build later tonight but at the moment the seas are calm, winds are 12 knots, we are making 4 knots with all sails set. <BR/> 8 months  agoShow

17º 46.206' S177º 11.448' ETumbleweed<BR/>September 26, 2018 <BR/><BR/>We had a great passage from Fulaga to Musket Cove, on the west coast of Viti Levu. First two days of sailing were magic, full moon as company at night, comfortable seas, winds on the beam in the high teens. The tide had us departing Fulaga at 17:00, so we went right into night watch mode early in the trip, the timing of the pass at Fulaga and the timing of entering the pass at Viti Levu were a bit off given the great weather window. To have us arrive with light we had to add 70 miles to our trip and slow down at the last stage. It all worked out fine and we crossed into the sheltered waters early this morning. Last night was a bit of a wild ride - the seas built and the winds were gusting over 35 knots. With a double reefed main and stays'l we still sailed fast but all in good control. Looking forward to enjoying Musket cove for a few days, then look for a spot with access to Nadi and Lautoka for provisioning. <BR/> 10 months  agoShow

19º 8.364' S178º 34.542' WTumbleweed<BR/>August 31, 2018 <BR/><BR/>An excellent overnight sail from Taveuni brought us to Fulaga. This atoll in the southern Lau group is a keen example of the South Pacific fantasy - scattered islets of undercut limestone, topped with Dr. Suessian dollops of tropical foliage, appearing to hover over waters of the most brilliant aquamarine. We used waypoints from SV MeToo and from Curly in Savu Savu.Navionics was very accurate for the pass. Lots of coral around the pass coming in so good light and watch on the bow highly recommended. We entered at high water slack with the sun over our shoulder, 6 knots of wind, perfect conditions. Anchored in 14 feet of water, over sand, good holding, surrounded by several of the fore mentioned islets. Let's keep this place our little secret.<BR/> 11 months  agoShow

16º 56.112' S179º 53.928' ETumbleweed<BR/>July 18, 2018 <BR/><BR/>Tumbleweed has arrived in Paradise. After a perfect day of sailing from Savusavu we took a mooring at Paradise Resort at the southern end of Taveuni Island. We left at first light from Savusavu and after motoring through no winds for the first two hours the winds built to 14 knots and we had ideal conditions, the Koro Sea was near calm and we were sailing close reached on one tack all the way to Taveuni. The mooring is open to the Somosomo strait with wide vistas of the sea with Vanua Levu in the distance backed by Taveuni rising dramatically shoreward. We just went ashore for a loaf of bread and bag of ice, and the facilities look great, very welcoming. One navigation note - our chartplotter is acting up as we get close to the dateline at 180 degrees. Mostly very slow to respond to commands or redraw charts when moving around. A heads up to others heading this way - each system will probably act differently. <BR/> 11 months  agoShow

16º 46.656' S179º 19.86' ETumbleweed<BR/>July 11, 2018 <BR/><BR/>We arrived yesterday to Savusavu, Fiji. Feels wonderful to be tied to a mooring here at the Copra Shed Marina. The water is flat, the winds are calm. We had a smooth check in with the friendly Fijian customs/health/immigration/bio security folks. A lifetime memory will be of me ferrying three lady officials from the marina to Tumbleweed in our tiny dinghy. Lots of laughing and comments in Fijian from the ladies. Of course the outboard conked out several times after the rough passage adding to the humor and outbursts. A nice welcome. <BR/> about 1 year  agoShow

23º 39.42' S178º 54.042' WTumbleweed<BR/>June 30, 2018 <BR/><BR/>We are anchored at Minerva Reef after a great week at sea and a particularly thrilling last night at sea. What a strange and wonderful anomaly! Out in the middle of the ocean, a small reef encircling a motu with a narrow strip of reef that is exposed at low tide around a pretty shallow body of water - we are currently in 40 feet. Feels great to not be moving after a week of being slammed around. Sighted two whales as we worked our way in to the pass. <BR/> about 1 year  agoShow

27º 41.946' S178º 9.846' ETumbleweed<BR/>June 27, 2018 <BR/><BR/>Closing in on our halfway mark to Fiji. Winds have picked up the past couple of days, averaging 20knots with periods sustained in the high 20's, squalls hitting with gusts to 48 knots, well developed seas. It's been a bumpy couple of days. We've been sailing under stays'l alone at night and have handled the squalls fine. All's well on board, enjoying some sunshine. It's taco Wednesday, this crew is easy to please. Not much wildlife out here, a few Gannets skimming the wave tops and a couple others we have yet to identify. Moonlight has been a magical addition to night watches.<BR/> about 1 year  agoShow

30º 14.286' S177º 24.828' ETumbleweed<BR/>June 26, 2018 <BR/><BR/> Beautiful day at sea. 20 knots of wind, well developed sea, Tumbleweed is settled and making 6 plus knots under Genoa alone, with a single reef. Last night was wild, winds in the high 30s, gusting to high 40's, made for a bumpy night but we made good way. Glad to have pre-cooked so many meals! The moon at night, lighting up the clouds and the waves was magical. Lots of bioluminescence in the sea last night as well. <BR/> about 1 year  agoShow

33º 2.346' S175º 38.598' ETumbleweed<BR/>June 24, 2018 <BR/><BR/>Calm seas, 13knots on the beam, making good way to Fiji. Yesterday wth winds left us and we motored for 7 hours, then spent the evening and morning drifting. A front is coming our way and we hope to be able to ride it to Savusavu. All well on board. Thai red curry for lunch. <BR/> about 1 year  agoShow

35º 12.966' S174º 13.242' ETumbleweedOut to the islands <BR/><BR/>June 14, 2018 <BR/><BR/>Hard to believe it's winter in New Zealand. We had a gorgeous day out on the water. Very light winds so we motored from Opua out to Urupukapuka, a nature preserve in the Bay of Islands. Had a sunny afternoon walking around the island checking out the Shags, Tuis and other birds. Feels really good to be at anchor. We are giving Tumbleweed a bit of a shakedown before heading for Fiji. Hoping to be heading north with the next weather window. Later next week is looking good. <BR/> about 1 year  agoShow

35º 19.302' S174º 7.218' ETumbleweedWe had a swift, exhilarating passage from Tonga. 8 days, 1200 miles, the first 6 days at near hull speed. Bay of Islands marina is beautiful, customs and check in went smoothly, really happy to be hear. Looking forward to be being based out of here for a while.over 1 year  agoShow

25º 37.788' S178º 30.984' WTumbleweedOutbound Tonga inbound Opua<BR/><BR/>October 31, 2017 <BR/><BR/>Happy Halloween! We are about 500 miles from Tonga, 690 from Opua making excellent time with 25 knots average wind speed mostly on the beam, and averaging 7.4 knots boat speed, swift for us, feels like a nice sleigh ride. Weather has been mixed but sunny and beautiful at the moment. Left the tropics yesterday and feeling cooler already, long sleeves, pants and last night blanket! Oh how our world has changed.<BR/> over 1 year  agoShow

18º 42.792' S174º 2.352' WTumbleweedVavau, Tonga<BR/><BR/>August 24, 2017 <BR/><BR/>Currently anchored near Nuku Island, a beautiful spot protected from the easterlies, with a promising looking area for snorkeling not to far. We had an excellent though short sail this afternoon and are secure for the night. <BR/> almost 2 years  agoShow

18º 39.648' S173º 58.89' WTumbleweedVavau, Tonga<BR/><BR/>August 22, 2017 <BR/><BR/>We had a good sail from Pago Pago and are now comfortably on a mooring. Check in was straightforward, the harbor here is well protected and near windless at the moment. The island has high cliffs and many small islands, coming in through Faihava Passage we were reminded of the islands of Northern British Columbia, solid rock undercut where the tide has worn an underlying shelf. almost 2 years  agoShow

13º 14.874' S163º 6.498' WTumbleweedSuwarrow, Cook Islands<BR/><BR/>July 22, 2017 <BR/><BR/>After six boisterous days of sailing from Bora Bora we are anchor down in Suwarrow. It is beautiful and ever so remote. One other sailboat and two park rangers, many sharks - black tips and rumors of a Tiger shark, I'll skip swimming. Fully developed seas offshore gave way to a nicely protected and calm pass through the atoll, Navionics chart was very accurate. We've already had our check in to the country and tomorrow will explore the main island. almost 2 years  agoShow

16º 29.982' S151º 45.402' WTumbleweedBora Bora<BR/><BR/>July 13, 2017 <BR/><BR/>Tied to a mooring a couple boat lengths off the Maikai Yacht club. Wonderful to be in fabled Bora Bora after an overnight passage from Mo'orea. Today we started our clearing out process for French Polynesia. Sad to be leaving this magnificent collection of islands, looking forward to adventures out to the west. about 2 years  agoShow

17º 32.418' S149º 34.344' WTumbleweedPapeete, Tahiti<BR/><BR/>June 26, 2017 <BR/><BR/>After a two night passage from Fakarava South Pass we are docked at the marina in Papeete. Passage was a bit mixed weather, mostly cruising along at 6 knots, last night the winds left us and we were forced to motor the last few hours. It has been three months since we left La Paz and this I the first "city" since then. The marina is a nice facility and we are on the outside dock with a nice view through the pass of the island of Mo'orea. We intend to spend a week here provisioning, taking care of some minor repairs, and seeing the sights. about 2 years  agoShow

16º 26.94' S145º 21.936' WTumbleweedFakarava, Tuamotu Archipelago<BR/><BR/>June 15, 2017 <BR/><BR/>A perfect day of sailing from the north end of Fakarava to the south end, beam reaching with 15 - 20 knots, making an average of around 7 knots, near flat waters, blue skies and views of long white sand beaches, Palm trees, the Pacific Ocean spotted through breaks in the atoll. Anchor down in white sand, 18 feet, view of the pacific over a long white sand spit.about 2 years  agoShow

16º 3.234' S145º 37.428' WTumbleweedFakarava, Tuamotu Archipelago<BR/><BR/>June 11, 2017 <BR/><BR/>Last night we had an excellent sail from Tahanea, 12-14 knots of wind on the beam. Now tied to a mooring buoy off the sleepy village of Rotoava. Clear, calm waters in a full spectrum of turquoise and emerald. Entrance through the pass a bit more boisterous than we bargained for, we surfed through on large swell. Once inside it was a pretty clear line to the anchorage/mooring area. about 2 years  agoShow

16º 57.168' S144º 34.8' WTumbleweedTahahea, Tuamotu Archipelago <BR/>May 27, 201 <BR/><BR/>After an overnight sail from Makemo we had a straightforward crossing through the pass into the lagoon. It took several hours to work our way from the pass to this anchorage, watching for coral heads and rocks. But it was well worth it, we are anchored over white sand with a view of a long white beach backed by palm trees, with a view over a long spit of sand to the pacific. Raw, remote, gorgeous. about 2 years  agoShow

16º 37.698' S143º 34.368' WTumbleweedMakemo, Tuamotus, French Polynesia. After a 5 day passage from Nuku Hiva we dropped anchor at Makemo, off the small village by the NE pass. Sailing was a mix of very light days with confused days, with a few days of perfect conditions - beam reach with 15 knots, us at hull speed in comfort. I'm a convert to trade wind sailing. Makemo is beautiful, the waters clear - we can see to the bottom in 45 feet. Timing of the pass was a bit off from the "Guesstimator" spread sheet we were using, fortunately the crew of "Magic" radio'd us with the updated conditions and we had a good trip through. about 2 years  agoShow

8º 56.772' S140º 9.93' WTumbleweedHakaenu Bay, Nuku Hiva. Beautiful anchorage, surrounded by cliffs and views to lush valleys. A tropical paradise. Sheltered from winds from the sea but experiencing strong gusts from the valley. about 2 years  agoShow

8º 55.014' S140º 6.06' WTumbleweed04/17/2017 0337 utc DAY 28: Landfall on Nuku Hiva. Surreal, after so many days on the expansive ocean. Morgan and I are ecstatic. We are in our dream. The Seas hail, The Oceans cry, Adventcha! Adventcha!over 2 years  agoShow

8º 23.514' S139º 32.178' WTumbleweed04/16/2017 0337 utc DAY 27: Landfall at Nuku Hiva predicted 4/16 2200z After another night of restful 1.5 kt sailing, we were greeted at sunrise by a very large school of Pantropical Dolphins...very slow, at rest or sleeping, something we had not seen before. Some of them were right next to Tumbleweed. (BTW, our guide states these dolphins "school".) 62 nm distance made good in the last 24 hour cycle (1330-1330). During that cycle we motored 8 hours and sailed 16. The seas in the morning were without wind waves, only long wave swell...mesmerizing. 50 nm to go.<BR/><BR/>=== Progress towards destination: 62 nm<BR/>=== Boat Heading, Speed: 210T, 2.2 kts SOG<BR/>=== Wind Direction, Speed: 65T, 7 kts<BR/>=== Combined Seas Direction, Height: 130T, 1.5m mixed, calming<BR/>=== Pressure: 1016 mb (I think our barometer is high ~3-5 mb)<BR/>=== Weather Observations: Mostly clear. Spectacular cloud formations.over 2 years  agoShow

7º 19.764' S138º 54.498' WTumbleweed04/15/2017 0300 utc DAY 26: Landfall predicted for 4/17. Absolutely stunning nights with a bright moon and active cloud production with stars sprinkled in. 62 nm distance made good in the last 24 hour cycle (1330-1330). During that cycle we motored 8 hours and sailed 16. Winds have dropped to SE 6 kts. Swell has become unsettled at 1.5 meters from the SE.<BR/><BR/>=== Progress towards destination: 62 nm<BR/>=== Boat Heading, Speed: 210T, 1.5 kts SOG<BR/>=== Wind Direction, Speed: 150T, 5 kts<BR/>=== Combined Seas Direction, Height: 130T, 1.5m mixed<BR/>=== Pressure: 1016 mb (I think our barometer is high ~3-5 mb)<BR/>=== Weather Observations: Mostly clear.over 2 years  agoShow

6º 29.808' S138º 23.502' WTumbleweed04/14/2017 0420 utc DAY 25: Still in the doldrums. 47 nm distance made good in the last 24 hour cycle (1330-1330). During that cycle we motored 3 hours and sailed 21. Winds have dropped to SE 5 kts. The seas have mellowed to a long wavelength swell at about 1.5 meters. While calm, at low boat speeds the swell induces a roll on the boat which can be hard on sails that aren't full. The whisker pole had helped, but now we have SE winds. We are sailing with just a stays'l --- it handles the rolling well, without wear. Making headway at 1.5 kts. That won't do. We have adopted a mixed motor and sail plan. 179 nm to go.<BR/><BR/>=== Progress towards destination: 47 nm<BR/>=== Boat Heading, Speed: 210T, 1.5 kts SOG<BR/>=== Wind Direction, Speed: 90T, 5 kts<BR/>=== Combined Seas Direction, Height: 130T, 1m, relaxed, long wavelengths<BR/>=== Pressure: 1016 mb (I think our barometer is high ~3-5 mb)<BR/>=== Weather Observations: Mostly clear.over 2 years  agoShow

5º 37.41' S138º 12.186' WTumbleweed04/13/2017 0420 utc DAY 24: Still in the dooooldruuuuums. 74 nm distance made good in the last 24 hour cycle (1330-1330). During that cycle we motored 3 hours and sailed 21, squeezing what we could out of shifting variable winds. The good news is the seas have settled, enabling us to sail in 5 kts or drift if the winds go to zero. We are hoping that the winds will pick up this evening like they did last night. Forecasts for the area do not look good for sailboats seeking wind.<BR/><BR/>=== Progress towards destination: 74 nm<BR/>=== Boat Heading, Speed: 200T, 2.3 kts SOG<BR/>=== Wind Direction, Speed: 90T, 5 kts<BR/>=== Combined Seas Direction, Height: 130T, 1m, relaxed, long wavelengths<BR/>=== Pressure: 1016 mb (I think our barometer is high ~3-5 mb)<BR/>=== Weather Observations: Mostly clear.over 2 years  agoShow

4º 16.578' S137º 28.674' WTumbleweed04/12/2017 0420 utc DAY 23: Still in the doldrums. Winds fell again today to 5-8 kts with continued shifts in direction. Combined with the mixed sea-state, it is becoming difficult for Tumbleweed to maintain course with the wind vane. Prospects do not look good for the coming days: winds go to 0 and the ITCZ expands, according to the gfs model. We have been motoring for a bit in the hopes that we can catch easterlies to the south of us.<BR/><BR/>=== Progress towards destination: 65 nm<BR/>=== Boat Heading, Speed: 190T, 5.5 kts SOG - motoring<BR/>=== Wind Direction, Speed: 90T, 8 kts<BR/>=== Combined Seas Direction, Height: 70T, 1m, confused, rolly<BR/>=== Pressure: 1016 mb (I think our barometer is high ~3-5 mb)<BR/>=== Weather Observations: Overcast, squalls.over 2 years  agoShow

3º 19.206' S136º 58.842' WTumbleweed04/12/2017 0231 utc DAY 22: Slow-going down south in the doldrums. Prepared for thunderstorms last night and today but they never came. We had a few minutes of light rain at noon but that was it. Otherwise, sunshine sunshine sunshine. Big winds left around noon and it don't look like they're coming back soon. On the bright side, we have always had enough wind to sail...even though we go just 3 kts. Found a little bit of chafe on a whisker pole control line. We were able to isolate it such that it is not a risk. Reading more about Oceania and the Marquesas...we're looking forward to a big hike up a high peak on Nuku Hiva. <BR/><BR/>=== Progress towards destination: 89 nm<BR/>=== Boat Heading, Speed: 210T, 3.5 kts SOG<BR/>=== Wind Direction, Speed: 60T, 10 kts<BR/>=== Combined Seas Direction, Height: 70T, 1m, confused, rolly<BR/>=== Pressure: 1016 mb (I think our barometer is high ~3-5 mb)<BR/>=== Weather Observations: Partly cloudyover 2 years  agoShow

2º 5.55' N136º 8.094' WTumbleweed04/11/2017 0356 utc DAY 21: Relaxed sailing with winds 8-13 kts NE with a genoa on a whisker pole maintaining 3 - 5 kts over ground. If only the seas would settle a bit...the boat rolling is constant and vigorous. We're changing how we measure our daily progress. Instead of focusing on distance over ground or water, we're going to track how much closer we are to our destination relative to where we were 24 hours earlier. For example, we may make wide jibes to avoid being beam-to-seas logging 150 nm through the water, but at the end of 24 hours be only 100 nm closer to our destination. We will now report the latter. <BR/><BR/>=== Progress towards destination: 87 nm<BR/>=== Boat Heading, Speed: 210T, 4.0 kts SOG<BR/>=== Wind Direction, Speed: 60T, 11 kts<BR/>=== Combined Seas Direction, Height: 70T, 1m, confused, settling<BR/>=== Pressure: 1018 mb (I think our barometer is high ~3-5 mb)<BR/>=== Weather Observations: Clear. Moonlightover 2 years  agoShow

1º 11.412' N135º 26.376' WTumbleweed04/10/2017 0417 utc DAY 20: Sunny day, but not so great sailing. Neptune let us pass over the equator last night, now we are shellbacks. We put the whisker pole back up so that we could sail DDW. That was nice until the winds dropped to 11 kts this afternnon as the seas continued to be confused. We have yet to turn on the propulsion engine, but these crazy seas are testing our resolve. Another slow day with about 110 nm. But the fresh muffins were excellent.<BR/><BR/>=== Boat Heading, Speed: 210T, 4.0 kts SOG<BR/>=== Wind Direction, Speed: 60T, 11 kts<BR/>=== Combined Seas Direction, Height: 70T, 1m, confused<BR/>=== Pressure: 1020 mb (I think our barometer is high ~3-5 mb)<BR/>=== Weather Observations: Clear. Moonlightover 2 years  agoShow

0º 16.488' N134º 54.576' WTumbleweed04/08/2017 0417 utc DAY 19: Beautiful sailing. After slow sailing through the night with 8 kts of wind, as the sun rose the winds climbed, to a solid 15 kts east wind. We beam reached all day with a full genoa and main. What made the sailing excellent were the coherent seas...long wave single train at about 1 m. Morgan made delicious pita bread. Tonight we will cross the equator and become shellbacks. A liitle rum for us and neptune, along with a sea poem.<BR/><BR/>=== Boat Heading, Speed: 210T, 6.5 kts SOG<BR/>=== Wind Direction, Speed: 90T, 15 kts<BR/>=== Combined Seas Direction, Height: 70T, 1m<BR/>=== Pressure: 1020 mb (I think our barometer is high ~3-5 mb)<BR/>=== Weather Observations: Clear. Moonlightover 2 years  agoShow

1º 34.122' N134º 5.76' WTumbleweed04/07/2017 0417 utc DAY 18: Slowing down... Before daybreak, we had solid 18-20 kts NE winds with gusts into the mid-20s. But after the sun rose the winds fell to 10-12 kts, and then slowly declined from there to 9 kts now. With our genoa whiskered, we are making 3 kts slightly off of our track with the Monitor windvane still in control. We have yet to motor since leaving San Jose del Cabo, but if the winds die completely and we are unable to keep Tumbleweed square to the waves, we will motor. We fixed our SSB tuner-to-backstay connection today. We will try to tune in to PPJ net tomorrow.<BR/><BR/>=== Boat Heading, Speed: 220T, 3 kts SOG<BR/>=== Wind Direction, Speed: 90T, 9 kts<BR/>=== Combined Seas Direction, Height: 60T, 1m<BR/>=== Pressure: 1018 mb<BR/>=== Weather Observations: Partly cloudy. Big blue sky mostly. Some rain after sundown.over 2 years  agoShow

2º 59.064' N133º 10.158' WTumbleweed04/06/2017 0426 utc DAY 17: A serene, comfortable sailing day. Last night the seas settled at about 1.5m, and the winds dropped to 9-12 kts. These calm conditions continued until noon, allowing us to relax. We managed to sail DDW and our heading was right towards Nuka Hiva. Our lazy sail plan resulted in only 3 kts though. After noon, we set our whisker pole for the genoa, and the winds climbed to 13 - 17 kts. This produced 6.3 kts SOG, bringing our day total to a modest 111....but it was so relaxing. Blue sky, big puffy white white clouds, blue settled seas, lunch on the cockpit table, talk of the South Pacific...<BR/><BR/>=== Boat Heading, Speed: 200T, 5.9 kts SOG<BR/>=== Wind Direction, Speed: 60T, 13 kts<BR/>=== Combined Seas Direction, Height: 60T, 1.5m<BR/>=== Pressure: 1016 mb<BR/>=== Weather Observations: Partly cloudy. Big blue sky. No rain.over 2 years  agoShow

4º 38.064' N132º 36.162' WTumbleweed04/04/2017 2346 utc DAY 16: Dynamic weather continues to keep us busy. Squalls, calms, cloudy, lightning, sunny, light winds, high winds, rain, NE winds, E winds, SE winds. If we were better or more energetic sailors, we'd be making better headway, but on a two-handed boat we can only muster complete sail plan changes a couple times a day. We started noticing signs of fatique a couple of days ago and have been sleeping more. That means Tumbleweed is essentially single-handed most of the time. We have a rule that no one goes forward on deck while the other is sleeping - even though we're tethered. As a result of all this, sometimes Tumbleweed has the funniest sail configs, and sometimes we're sailing in the wrong direction. Our daily VMG-course has fallen and we haven't seen another 170 nm day. But we don't care...we're getting to see more of the Pacific Ocean. Birds roosted on deck last night, drying their wings. <BR/><BR/>=== Boat Heading, Speed: 180T, 5.8 kts SOG<BR/>=== Wind Direction, Speed: 45T, 15 kts<BR/>=== Combined Seas Direction, Height: 45T, 1.5m<BR/>=== Pressure: 1015 mb<BR/>=== Weather Observations: Partly cloudy. High clouds. Fewer squalls.over 2 years  agoShow

5º 38.064' N131º 28.056' WTumbleweed04/03/2017 1907 utc DAY 15: [!updated data section] We found no north arm of the ITCZ at ~8N 130W as forecasted by some US national services. Instead we found calming seas and winds from NE at 10-15. Later on last night and into this morning, we struggled to find a sail configuration that was safe at night for a 2-handed boat with varying conditions, including squalls and thunderstorms. The most challenging to us was the light winds combined with moderate seas. If the wind went to 8 knots, it was hard to keep the boat and rigging from strong swings as the 1.5 m waves passed. Now we are wing-n-wing with a whiskered genoa. Low VMG-course, but are pretty much headed directly for Nuka Hiva<BR/><BR/>=== Boat Heading, Speed: 210T, 3.5 kts SOG<BR/>=== Wind Direction, Speed: 50T, 8 kts<BR/>=== Combined Seas Direction, Height: 45T, 1.5m<BR/>=== Pressure: 1017 mb<BR/>=== Weather Observations: Partly cloudy. Squalls to 20 kts. Rain. Beautifulover 2 years  agoShow

5º 39.06' N131º 28.056' WTumbleweed04/03/2017 1907 utc DAY 15: We found no north arm of the ITCZ at ~8N 130W as forecasted by some US national services. Instead we found calming seas and winds from NE at 10-15. Later on last night and into this morning, we struggled to find a sail configuration that was safe at night for a 2-handed boat with varying conditions, including squalls and thunderstorms. The most challenging to us was the light winds combined with moderate seas. If the wind went to 8 knots, it was hard to keep the boat and rigging from strong swings as the 1.5 m waves passed. Now we are wing-n-wing with a whiskered genoa. Low VMG-course, but are pretty much headed directly for Nuka Hiva<BR/><BR/>=== Boat Heading, Speed: 210T, 6.5 kts SOG<BR/>=== Wind Direction, Speed: 40T, 20 kts<BR/>=== Combined Seas Direction, Height: 0T,35T,45T, 3m, chaotic<BR/>=== Pressure: 1019 mb<BR/>=== Weather Observations: Partly cloudy. Some light to medium rain.over 2 years  agoShow

8º 26.604' N129º 56.508' WTumbleweed04/02/2017 0400 utc DAY 14: Predawn lightning caused us to jybe to the south. The rest of the morning and early afternoon had light showers with winds from NE 15-20. In the late afternoon we sailed into big 3m seas at about 8 30'N 129 30'W... three different wave trains. We are now headed south to the equator along the 130th meridian. Our NOAA analysis shows the north arm of the ITCZ at 8 N, about where we are now. If the winds die but the heavy seas persist, we may be forced to motor through...something we hope to avoid.<BR/><BR/>=== Boat Heading, Speed: 190T, 6.5 kts SOG<BR/>=== Wind Direction, Speed: 40T, 20 kts<BR/>=== Combined Seas Direction, Height: 0T,35T,45T, 3m, chaotic<BR/>=== Pressure: 1019 mb<BR/>=== Weather Observations: Partly cloudy. Some light to medium rain.over 2 years  agoShow

9º 46.152' N128º 36.126' WTumbleweed04/01/2017 0359 utc DAY 13: Half way to Nuka Hiva. 1325 nm from Baja, 1325 nm to go. We were struck with a bit of panic today when we realized how fast our passage that we have dreamed and talked about for so long was happening. Not to worry though, our lazy sailing habits and the coming doldrums will make it last. For instance, we are too slothful to reset the whisker pole, so instead we are gybing our way southwest. Shake that reef out? Nah, we'll just have to put it back soon. DOLPHINS: At 0200 this afternoon, we noticed about 20 boobies when the normal count is 2...and then we saw the dolphins. Hundreds of dolphins were swimming towards our boat, leaping four or five at a time in perfect synchronization. They performed aerial acrobatics that included double twists with back flips. Twenty or so would be riding our bow wave at a time. We could see them swimming towards us from hundreds of meters away. They swam with us for hours. We think they were Pantropical Spotted Dolphins.<BR/><BR/>=== Boat Heading, Speed: 245T, 6.5 kts SOG<BR/>=== Wind Direction, Speed: 35T, 22 kts (15 kts until late afternoon, then in the 20s)<BR/>=== Combined Seas Direction, Height: 35T, 2 m, building<BR/>=== Pressure: 1019 mb<BR/>=== Weather Observations: Cloudy, overcast all day. Some light rain.over 2 years  agoShow

10º 3.42' N126º 20.226' WTumbleweed3/31/2017 0336 utc DAY 12: Another blue sky blue sea day with steady winds 18 - 22 kts. This afternoon the seas began to stretch out and sober up, so even the waves are helping. Taking a tip from Shindig, we are sailing west, southwest to take advantage of the waning northeasterly winds, so instead of crossing the equator at ~129W, we will aim for 132 - 135W. <BR/><BR/>=== Boat Heading, Speed: 235T, 6.5 kts SOG<BR/>=== Wind Direction, Speed: 35T, 20 kts<BR/>=== Combined Seas Direction, Height: 35T, 2 m, calming<BR/>=== Pressure: 1019 mb<BR/>=== Weather Observations: Clear all day, some clouds at sundownover 2 years  agoShow

10º 31.866' N124º 27.408' WTumbleweed03/30/2017 0327 (utc) DAY 11: Similar to Shindig, we're heading a bit more westerly to keep in the NE trades. We haven't changed our target equator meridian yet ( ~129W), but may push it westward. We had a solid 20 kt average wind all day, but the minute to minute speed was quite variable at 15 to 25. There were also at least two wave trains with significant seas at 2 - 3 m ( again, i'm not good at judging SWH). Some stats for our first 10 days: 1440 nm on water, 6 kt average speed. Distance from origin: 1124 nm, for ~ 80% course efficiency. Distance to destination: 1504 nm. Extrapolating from first 10 days: 13 days to destination. But I bet it will be longer. <BR/><BR/>=== Boat Heading, Speed: 235T, 6.5 kts SOG<BR/>=== Wind Direction, Speed: 35T, 20 kts<BR/>=== Combined Seas Direction, Height: 45T & 35T, 2-3 m, confused<BR/>=== Pressure: 1020 mb<BR/>=== Weather Observations: Clear all day, some clouds at sundownover 2 years  agoShow

11º 56.76' N123º 5.688' WTumbleweed03/28/2017 0402 (utc) DAY 10: Heading a bit more southerly today after surviving the night with our whisker pole deployed. It was a classic chess-like example of how in just a couple of moves one can go from winning to losing. The yankee-cut genoa on the whisker pole was great at 20 kts in beautiful sunshine, but not-so-great at 24 kts in darkness...and building seas. The catch was that we could not convince ourselves that the risk of leaving it deployed has high enough to warrant the risks of taking it 24 kts and darkness. So we were stuck fretting about it all night. (What saved us is the high clew on the yankee, which results in the end of the whisker pole being about 16 feet above the water.)<BR/><BR/>=== Boat Heading, Speed: 200T, 6.5 kts SOG<BR/>=== Wind Direction, Speed: 45T, 20 kts<BR/>=== Combined Seas Direction, Height: 45T, 2 m, calming<BR/>=== Pressure: 1022 mb<BR/>=== Weather Observations: Clear all day, some clouds at sundownover 2 years  agoShow

13º 37.638' N121º 47.964' WTumbleweedDAY 9: Trade winds. Steady 15 kts this morning, 20 kts this afternoon, and now 22 kts this evening. All from 45T. These actuals winds were somewhat consistent with yesterday's GFS forecast for where we are at. It's grand to have these NE winds, but they've built considerable frisky seas at 2 - 3 meters. We passed a tanker 27 nm away according to AIS, but did not see it, so still no sightings of other boats. Just three birds who seem to like us.<BR/>03/28/2017 0402 (utc)<BR/>=== Boat Heading, Speed: 236T, 7.0 kts SOG<BR/>=== Wind Direction, Speed: 45T, 22 kts<BR/>=== Combined Seas Direction, Height: 45T, 2-3 m, frisky<BR/>=== Pressure: 1022 mb<BR/>=== Weather Observations: Clear all day, some clouds at sundownover 2 years  agoShow

14º 39.666' N120º 2.172' WTumbleweedDAY 8: Lazy beautiful day. All we managed to do in our slothdom is jibe the whisker-poled genoa once...and read novels. Based on GFS weather models, we decided that we might find more winds west of us, instead of south, so we pushed our heading up to 240T, requiring a jibe. We'll have to make up for this westerly heading with a southerly one later...but we wanted to keep in the fresh breeze. The variable winds in the 10 kt range have reduced our daily run rate from the earlier 170 nm/day, so now we're considering the prospect of a 29+ day passage based on slow day estimates in the doldrums.<BR/>03/27/2017 0411 (utc)<BR/>=== Boat Heading, Speed: 236T, 6.5 kts SOG<BR/>=== Wind Direction, Speed: 25T, 10-18 kts<BR/>=== Combined Seas Direction, Height: 15T, 1+ m, building?<BR/>=== Pressure: 1022 mb<BR/>=== Weather Observations: Partly cloudy, overcastover 2 years  agoShow

16º 12.564' N119º 11.346' WTumbleweedDAY 7: After seven days of big seas, we are happy to see them settle tonight to about 1 m. This morning we struggled to realign with our planned track's heading, but the confused seas and shifting winds made it difficult. We are now sailing happy with a whisker-poled genoa --- directly towards our equator meridian (129 W). Not many VMG-course miles today.<BR/>03/26/2017 0328 (utc)<BR/>=== Boat Heading, Speed: 212T, 6.2 kts SOG<BR/>=== Wind Direction, Speed: 25T, 10-18 kts<BR/>=== Combined Seas Direction, Height: 15T, 1 m, calming<BR/>=== Pressure: 1022 mb<BR/>=== Weather Observations: Partly cloudy, clearingover 2 years  agoShow

16º 56.148' N118º 2.55' WTumbleweedDAY 6: Winds speeds have fallen from 20-25 kts. to 15-20, but the combined seas are still at 2-3 meters SWH. The big seas remind us of stormy days off the coast of Washington & Oregon. To play it safe and make it easy to adjust to variable winds and seas, we've been sailing with just a double-reefed 110% genoa at about 135 degrees off T wind. We've been able maintain about a 6.3 kts speed-in-water. Since we left the coast of Baja, we have not seen another boat --- not even lights at night. The two of us are just now getting into a good sleep/watch rhythm. <BR/>03/25/2017 0357 (utc)<BR/>=== Boat Heading, Speed: 240T, 6.6 kts SOG<BR/>=== Wind Direction, Speed: 30T, 15-20 kts<BR/>=== Combined Seas Direction, Height: 15T, 2-3 m<BR/>=== Pressure: 1023 mb<BR/>=== Weather Observations: Mostly cloudy.over 2 years  agoShow

17º 34.2' N114º 41.964' WTumbleweedDAY 5. Adventcha! Last night was a bit rough. After sailing all day and early night with a nice fresh 20 kts from 0T, the winds jumped to a solid 30 kts. with gusts to 35 at 1030 utc. Even though we had both a double-reefed genoa and main when the 30's hit, we developed powerful weather helm that overwhelmed our Monitor windvane. We had a hell of a time dropping the main completely. Big swell is forecasted to arrive in this area later today, but we already have a good 3 meter swell (I'm not good at judging SWH, so I tend to be conservative with my estimates.)<BR/>03/23/2017 1803 (utc)<BR/>=== Boat Heading, Speed: 230T, 7.2 kts<BR/>=== Wind Direction, Speed: 30T, 25 kts<BR/>=== Combined Seas Direction, Height: 0T, 3+ m<BR/>=== Pressure: 1023 mb<BR/>=== Weather Observations: Partly cloudy. Beautiful seas.over 2 years  agoShow

19º 11.208' N112º 42.72' WTumbleweedWe are sailing faster than expected, and we have yet to see weather that wasn't sailable. Sometimes we have had to sail west or south, rather than southwest -- our planned route's dominant heading --- but our overall VMG-course is good, at about 6.3 kts./hour. Weather forecast is for stronger gradient winds through the area, along with 2-3 m. swell.<BR/>03/22/2017 2000 (utc)<BR/>=== Boat Heading, Speed: 230T, 6.5 kts<BR/>=== Wind Direction, Speed: 0T, varies 10 - 18 kts.<BR/>=== Combined Seas Direction, Height: 330T, 1.5 m<BR/>=== Pressure: 1022 mb<BR/>=== Weather Observations: Cloudy/hazyover 2 years  agoShow

21º 13.506' N108º 34.284' WTumbleweedWinds shifted to 315 T. Bigger seas than expected. May try upwind a bit to see if we can catch the gfs forecasted NE winds not far west of us. Have not seen a single tanker, but they are all around us according to AIS.<BR/>03/20/2017 1647 (utc)<BR/>=== Boat Heading, Speed: 180T, 7.1 kts<BR/>=== Wind Direction, Speed: 315T, 20 kts.<BR/>=== Ocean Current Direction, Speed: -<BR/>=== Wind Wave Direction, Height: 300T,-<BR/>=== Swell Direction, Height: 315T, 2.5 m<BR/>=== Pressure: 1022 mb<BR/>=== Weather Observations: Clearover 2 years  agoShow

22º 27.126' N109º 10.818' WTumbleweedSuper happy to begin the paasage. San Jose del Cabo for fuel, arrived noon, no wind/waves. Left 1330, with 18 kts NE, then 2O kts SE with boxy seas. Tonight is a bit rough, solid 25 kts, with gusts to 30...from 270 T. Decided not to beat to wind through night so we are sailing off the wind with heading of 150 T, which has more east in it than we would like. We are hoping winds will shift to NW once we get away form los cabos. Beautiful sunset.<BR/>03/20/2017 0442 (utc)<BR/>=== Anchored<BR/>=== Boat Heading, Speed: 150T, 7.0 kts<BR/>=== Wind Direction, Speed: 270T, 25 kts.<BR/>=== Ocean Current Direction, Speed: -<BR/>=== Wind Wave Direction, Speed: 270 T<BR/>=== Swell Direction, Speed: 270 T<BR/>=== Pressure: 1022 mb<BR/>=== Weather Observations: Clearover 2 years  agoShow

23º 22.692' N109º 25.338' WTumbleweedWe are anchored at Los Frailes. Our weather forecasts show building winds southwest of here beginning Sunday 3/19. We plan to leave Los Frailes early Sunday, slip into San Jose for fuel, and then sail westward offshore.<BR/>03/18/2017 1436 (utc)<BR/>=== Anchored<BR/>=== Boat Heading, Speed: 120T, 0.0 kts<BR/>=== Wind Direction, Speed: 45T, 0.0 kts.<BR/>=== Ocean Current Direction, Speed: 90T, 0.0 kts<BR/>=== Wind Wave Direction, Speed: 0T, 0.0 kts<BR/>=== Swell Direction, Speed: 0T, 0.0 kts<BR/>=== Pressure: 1022 mb<BR/>=== Weather Observations: Clearover 2 years  agoShow

23º 59.232' N109º 49.596' WTumbleweedAt noon local on Tuesday 3/14 we began motoring south from Bonanza in hopes of afternoon winds which never came. At times we had 0 true wind. We are now anchored at Los Muertos. Forecasts of wide bands of just 5 knots southwest off the southern tip of Baja do not excite us. We are going to wait for winds to build before we leave coastal Baja.<BR/>03/15/2017 1617 (utc)<BR/>=== Anchored<BR/>=== Boat Heading, Speed: 120T, 0.0 kts<BR/>=== Wind Direction, Speed: 45T, 0.0 kts.<BR/>=== Ocean Current Direction, Speed: 90T, 0.0 kts<BR/>=== Wind Wave Direction, Speed: 0T, 0.0 kts<BR/>=== Swell Direction, Speed: 0T, 0.0 kts<BR/>=== Pressure: 1022 mb<BR/>=== Weather Observations: Clearover 2 years  agoShow

24º 26.814' N110º 18.492' WTumbleweedLeft La Paz 3/13 2130 utc. Surprisingly sailed to Playa Bonanza, Isla Espiritu Santo on the same tack, 45 degrees awa, as the wind direction shifted gradually. Motored last 3 nm when winds died at sundown. Plan to sail south as soon as local winds build 3/14.<BR/>03/14/2017 0254 (utc)<BR/>=== Anchored<BR/>=== Boat Heading, Speed: 120T, 0.0 kts<BR/>=== Wind Direction, Speed: 45T, 0.0 kts.<BR/>=== Ocean Current Direction, Speed: 90T, 0.0 kts<BR/>=== Wind Wave Direction, Speed: 0T, 0.0 kts<BR/>=== Swell Direction, Speed: 0T, 0.0 kts<BR/>=== Pressure: 1017 mb<BR/>=== Weather Observations: Clearover 2 years  agoShow

24º 12.984' N110º 17.964' WTumbleweedIn La Paz, Mexico, at the Costa Baja Marina. Preparing to set sail March 13, 2017 on our passage to French Polynesia. Light winds in the Sea of Cortez will not help us.<BR/>03/10/2017 1912 (utc)<BR/>=== Boat Heading, Speed: 120T, 0.0 kts<BR/>=== Wind Direction, Speed: 45T, 5.1 kts.<BR/>=== Ocean Current Direction, Speed: 90T, 0.0 kts<BR/>=== Wind Wave Direction, Speed: 0T, 0.0 kts<BR/>=== Swell Direction, Speed: 0T, 0.0 kts<BR/>=== Pressure: 1020 mb<BR/>=== Weather Observations: Partly cloudy   over 2 years  agoShow

24º 12.948' N110º 17.952' WTumbleweedIn La Paz, Mexico, at the Costa Baja Marina. Preparing to set sail March 10, 2017 on our passage to French Polynesia. <BR/>… 03/08/2017 2100 (utc) <BR/>… Boat Heading, Speed: 120T, 0.0 kts <BR/>… Wind Direction, Speed: 45T , 5.1 kts. <BR/>… Ocean Current Direction, Speed: 90T, 0.0 kts <BR/>… Wind Wave Direction, Speed: 0T, 0.0 kts <BR/>… Swell Direction, Speed: 0T, 0.0 kts <BR/>… Pressure: 1019 mb <BR/>… Weather Observations: Partly cloudy    over 2 years  agoShow

24º 12.99' N110º 17.964' WTumbleweedIn La Paz, Mexico, at the Costa Baja Marina. Preparing to set sail March 17, 2017 on our passage to French Polynesia. <BR/>03/08/2017 2100 (utc) <BR/>Boat Heading (T), Speed (kts): 120, 0.0 <BR/>Wind Direction (T), Speed (sustained kts): 45, 5.1 <BR/>Ocean Current Direction (T), Speed(kts): 90, 0.0 <BR/>Sea State Wind Waves, Swell (swh meters): 0.0, 0.0 <BR/>Pressure (mb): 1019 <BR/>Weather Observations: Partly cloudy    over 2 years  agoShow

24º 12.99' N110º 17.964' WTumbleweedIn La Paz, Mexico, at the Costa Baja Marina. Preparing to set sail March 10, 2017 on our passage to French Polynesia.   over 2 years  agoShow

24º 12.99' N110º 17.964' WTumbleweedIn La Paz, Mexico, at the Costa Baja Marina. Preparing to set sail soon on our passage to French Polynesia. over 2 years  agoShow

24º 12.99' N110º 17.964' WTumbleweedAt Costa Baja Marina. Dialed, top notch marina. Quirky little jog into the marina, right at the mouth of the channel into La Paz proper - we were in the marina before we knew it. over 2 years  agoShow

24º 26.904' N110º 18.39' WTumbleweedLarge anchorage with sweeping white sand beach, backed by a red earth landscape. Jade green waters, we anchored out a bit further than the other boats, there is a whole line of sailboats much closer in. over 2 years  agoShow

23º 59.238' N109º 49.602' WTumbleweedAustere landscape behind a long white sandy beach. Dropped anchor in darkness, radar outline of coast and our navionics charts lined up well. Well set in about 30 feet over sand. over 2 years  agoShow

24º 34.902' N112º 3.87' WTumbleweedAnchored off Punta Belcher, 24feet under the keel, tucked around the corner from the opening to the bay with a clean view of the pacific. The bay is massive - the far eastern side a sliver of tan with a bit of smokestack. Just a layover, tomorrow we'll head southward, so can't comment on the villages,etc. over 2 years  agoShow

24º 47.094' N112º 14.31' WTumbleweedLarge, wild bay, open to the Pacific Ocean. We are tucked up near the mouth of the estuary. Welcome respite after the two night passage from Bahia Tortuga. Miles long sandy beach with ocean swell breaking in long runs. Anchor well set in 24 feet. over 2 years  agoShow

27º 40.932' N114º 52.998' WTumbleweedMassive bay, easily hold over a hundred boats - and does during the Baja HaHa. Beautiful landscape, small town on shore, anchored well in 26 feet, bay is protected from swell by a reef and two points of land. over 2 years  agoShow

31º 51.42' N116º 37.344' WTumbleweedCruiseport Marina, Ensenada. Nice marina, well run and organized. Short walk to downtown. Friendly staff, helped us with the check in process. over 2 years  agoShow

34º 14.622' N119º 15.672' WTumbleweedVentura, CA. Nice marina, seems quaint and quiet after the bustle of Santa Barbara. Shallow depths at the harbor master dock and our slip. At low tide last night we had 6 inches under the keel, with six feet of draft. Staff is friendly, about 1.5 miles to groceries, a couple miles to town, so a little out of the way. over 2 years  agoShow

34º 1.242' N119º 32.238' WTumbleweedLarge, open bight on the south end of Santa Cruz island, space for many boats in settled weather. Well set in 35 feet not too far from shore. Sound of the surf filling the cabin.over 2 years  agoShow

34º 24.42' N119º 41.322' WTumbleweedTied up at the impeccable Santa Barbara marina with views of the San Ynez mountains. Clean, well run, with cleats large enough to secure a battleship. over 2 years  agoShow

34º 3.264' N120º 21.444' WTumbleweedGorgeous anchorage in the Channel Islands, long white sand beach, extremely arid island. After sailing from Half Moon Bay it's a welcoming spot.over 2 years  agoShow

37º 29.904' N122º 29.202' WTumbleweedBack on the move after a month working on boat projects in Berkeley. Revisiting Half Moon Bay for a few days to avoid a weather front. This is a convenient stop just out of the city. Good holding, well protected. almost 3 years  agoShow

38º 26.598' N122º 31.56' ETumbleweedDocked at Berkeley Marina. Good facilities, walking distance to downtown Berkeley. Note - it is really shallow getting into the marina - we saw 8.5 feet at one point near high tide. We wouldn't be able to enter or leave except near high tide with our 6 feet of draft. almost 3 years  agoShow

37º 29.856' N122º 29.268' WTumbleweedShallow anchorage with good holding, well protected, nice spot after 7 days at sea. almost 3 years  agoShow

44º 37.512' N124º 3.144' WTumbleweedTied up at Newport OR marina. Excellent spot to rest up and get ready for the next move south. Lots of interesting folks at the dock, most heading south as we are. Crossing the bar here was an experience. almost 3 years  agoShow

49º 17.784' N125º 58.776' WTumbleweedWest Whitepine Cove, Vancouver Island, BC - Well protected on all sides, quiet, easy access.almost 3 years  agoShow

49º 21.702' N126º 13.872' WTumbleweedHoot la Kootla, Flores Island, BC - Unnamed on the chart but called Hoot La Kootla in the Douglass' guide book to the west coast. A beautiful fair weather anchorage if you want to duck out of Hot Springs Cove. View out to the ocean, protected in a little cove with nice sandy beach.almost 3 years  agoShow

49º 39.03' N126º 31.2' WTumbleweedBligh Cove, Bligh Island, BC - Favorite cove on the west side so far. Whales visited after dinner, the cove is remote and well protected surrounded by pristine wilderness.almost 3 years  agoShow

49º 45.054' N126º 31.074' WTumbleweedHisnit Inlet, BC - Tucked in deep in Nootka Sound this is a quiet and well protected anchorage in about 60 feet. Not secluded as there is road access and a couple of campers and a few sport fishing boats but I think it comes with the territory.almost 3 years  agoShow

49º 46.884' N126º 50.262' WTumbleweedMary Basis, Nootka Island, BC - Far from the ocean's swell, surrounded by mountains (with a fair amount of clearcut) anchored in about 25 feet of water. Quiet and calm spot to wait for some weather to pass by. The route in from the pacific is gorgeous. almost 3 years  agoShow

50º 31.776' N127º 6.3' WTumbleweedTahsis, Vancouver Island, BC - Tied up at Westview marina in Tahsis, a small community focused on sports fishing. Picturesque spot at the head of Tahsis Inlet. Friendly staff and good amenities.almost 3 years  agoShow

49º 49.716' N126º 58.08' WTumbleweedRosa Harbor, Vancouver Island, BC - Beautiful anchorage nestled up against a small island, protected from swell, close to the mouth of Esperanza Inlet. about 3 years  agoShow

49º 58.224' N127º 14.754' WTumbleweedRugged Point, Vancouver Island, BC - tucked off to the side of Kyuquot Channel with a long sandy beach and short walk through rain forest to a gorgeous beach on the Pacific.about 3 years  agoShow

50º 2.94' N127º 11.742' WTumbleweedDixie Cove, Vancouver Island, BC - Well sheltered, plenty of swinging room, scenic, several boats anchored in the "Inner" cove, only us in the "Outer" cove.about 3 years  agoShow

50º 8.292' N127º 41.544' WTumbleweedColumbia Cove, Vancouver Island, BC - Gentle swell with views heading down the island headlands, up against the Brooks Peninsula. Anchored in 11.25 feet at mid-tide.about 3 years  agoShow

50º 15.372' N127º 43.926' WTumbleweedKlaskish Basin, BC - signs of clear cutting are a knock against this spot. But it is secure, and scenic facing south. The narrow channel into the basin is stunning. Took two tries to set anchor in 18 feet solid holdabout 3 years  agoShow

50º 40.17' N128º 17.904' WTumbleweedSan Josef Bay, BC - Expansive, shallow bay open to the pacific. Calm but rolly on this fair weather day. Remote, rugged, with nice beaches to explore. Anchored in 18ft about 3 years  agoShow

50º 55.026' N127º 56.268' WTumbleweedBull Harbour - just around the corner from Cape Scott and the top of Vancouver Island. about 3 years  agoShow

50º 51.366' N127º 39.918' WTumbleweedPort Alexander - beautiful cove with sandy beach. Well sheltered to the north. about 3 years  agoShow

50º 31.398' N126º 33.684' WTumbleweedBoat Bay, West Cracroft Island<BR/>Excellent views down Johnstone Strait, tranquil spot. Wouldn't recommend in strong winds but beautiful on a calm night.<BR/>about 3 years  agoShow

50º 28.968' N125º 44.988' WTumbleweedDouglas Bay, Forward Harbor<BR/>Beautiful spot, nice beach and path through forest.<BR/>about 3 years  agoShow

50º 35.568' N127º 5.382' WTumbleweedPort McNeillabout 3 years  agoShow

48º 36.72' N123º 9.702' WTumbleweedalmost 4 years  agoShow

48º 49.236' N123º 12.648' WTumbleweedalmost 4 years  agoShow

48º 59.004' N123º 38.778' WTumbleweedalmost 4 years  agoShow

49º 29.742' N124º 21.462' WTumbleweedalmost 4 years  agoShow

50º 21.054' N125º 27.93' WTumbleweedalmost 4 years  agoShow

50º 37.218' N126º 15.606' WTumbleweedalmost 4 years  agoShow

50º 36.03' N126º 40.428' WTumbleweedalmost 4 years  agoShow

50º 50.808' N126º 51.708' WTumbleweedalmost 4 years  agoShow

51º 3.42' N127º 30.408' WTumbleweedalmost 4 years  agoShow

51º 29.262' N127º 45.594' WTumbleweedalmost 4 years  agoShow

52º 3.75' N128º 0.888' WTumbleweedalmost 4 years  agoShow

52º 23.688' N128º 15.792' WTumbleweedalmost 4 years  agoShow

53º 5.346' N128º 25.998' WTumbleweedalmost 4 years  agoShow

54º 19.224' N130º 19.2' WTumbleweedalmost 4 years  agoShow

53º 33.51' N129º 34.17' WTumbleweedalmost 4 years  agoShow

54º 20.406' N130º 28.476' WTumbleweedalmost 4 years  agoShow

54º 35.28' N130º 53.502' WTumbleweedalmost 4 years  agoShow

54º 57.006' N130º 56.478' WTumbleweedalmost 4 years  agoShow

55º 52.878' N132º 35.868' WTumbleweedalmost 4 years  agoShow

56º 32.082' N132º 58.398' WTumbleweedalmost 4 years  agoShow

57º 6.468' N134º 23.64' WTumbleweedalmost 4 years  agoShow

57º 28.254' N135º 17.328' WTumbleweedalmost 4 years  agoShow

57º 14.28' N135º 37.914' WTumbleweedalmost 4 years  agoShow

57º 3.366' N135º 21.036' WTumbleweedSitka!almost 4 years  agoShow

57º 26.676' N135º 37.656' WTumbleweedalmost 4 years  agoShow

57º 9.168' N135º 35.286' WTumbleweedShallows quickly to the west of anchorage. We saw a fellow sailboat run aground. The shallows go quickly into water shallow enough to stand in.almost 4 years  agoShow

57º 4.614' N134º 49.53' WTumbleweedalmost 4 years  agoShow

56º 51.42' N134º 44.58' WTumbleweedRed Bluff Bay - a favorite on the trip. Watch out for the depths at the head of the bay - waters shallow much further from the stream mouth than indicated on charts. about 4 years  agoShow

57º 6.474' N134º 23.682' WTumbleweedabout 4 years  agoShow

56º 32.112' N132º 58.698' WTumbleweedabout 4 years  agoShow

56º 26.502' N132º 57.564' WTumbleweedabout 4 years  agoShow

56º 21.762' N132º 0.51' WTumbleweedabout 4 years  agoShow

55º 59.022' N131º 56.832' WTumbleweedabout 4 years  agoShow

55º 39.402' N132º 26.808' WTumbleweedabout 4 years  agoShow

55º 35.364' N131º 37.212' WTumbleweedabout 4 years  agoShow

55º 20.64' N131º 39.186' WTumbleweedKetchikan! We've made it to Alaskaabout 4 years  agoShow

54º 57.006' N130º 56.472' WTumbleweedabout 4 years  agoShow

54º 28.044' N130º 57.0' WTumbleweedabout 4 years  agoShow

53º 48.582' N130º 11.532' WTumbleweedabout 4 years  agoShow

53º 27.42' N129º 47.208' WTumbleweedabout 4 years  agoShow

53º 7.926' N129º 31.398' WTumbleweedabout 4 years  agoShow

52º 44.808' N128º 44.568' WTumbleweedabout 4 years  agoShow

52º 42.588' N128º 23.994' WTumbleweedabout 4 years  agoShow

51º 38.52' N127º 50.334' WTumbleweedabout 4 years  agoShow

51º 29.256' N127º 45.396' WTumbleweedabout 4 years  agoShow

55º 20.64' N131º 39.186' WTumbleweedWe are anchored off Port McNeill for the next couple of days before heading to the Broughton Islands.about 4 years  agoShow

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