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post #28 of Old 02-07-2008
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Originally Posted by vega1860 View Post
Yep Lion. I know what you mean.

Gotta run. The wife just called. Taking off work a little early and wants me to meet her at the brewery.

Malie ke kai
Well, you seem to have your sailorly priorities in order.

I think this brings up a fairly interesting debating point. Vega is evidently an experienced sailor, as is his wife, as not to be so doing a Hawa'ii to Vancouver trip in a 27-footer would be the height of folly.

But it does bring to the fore the need to "stay in touch" via satphones, SSBs and other wonders of the 21st century. A well-found small boat can make all sorts of trips with a handheld VHF, a sextant, an almanac and a compass.

Our distant ancestors were doing this sort of thing in the misty past of 1985 or thereabouts. Legend has it that virgins set out so equipped in vessels of possibly stone construction called Kon-Tes-sas or some no doubt native moniker, and said virgins, relying only on ancient scrolls called "almanacs" and the mysterious force called "WWV" and their innate, incorruptible virtue crossed seas and broad oceans, possibly ramming dragons in the process.

But because you can reach out and touch someone from the middle of an ocean passage (assuming, naturally, that your wallet is thicker than your hull lay-up), does this mean you should, or more to the point, that you must?

I am surprised to hear that a 27 footer could carry enough solar panels to run a watermaker off the house batteries, because I'm pretty sure that the fuel carried would be well under 100 hours of engine run time (plus a likely maximum alt output of 55 amps). Throw in a 150 watt SSB so you can say "still here!" to lubbers? You might be able to report dying of thirst!

There are many reasons to go to sea, and one of them is to "get away". The hazards are known, and the consequences of poor decision-making, indifferent attention to maintenance or sheer dumb luck (a bow ornament on a container ship, or the dinner of a rogue wave) are largely final and not fixable by any amount of SAR heroics, worthy though they might be.

The wife had it right: She provisioned for 90 days in anticipation of 30 days, and insisted on throwing in a little watermaker. 55 days was a longer passage, not a *bad* passage nor one that would elicit much comment before our modern world insisted on shrinking the globe to a set of time zones and due dates. The sea, magnificent in its indifference, has the last word.
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