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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Hello!

I would like to do a solo non-stop circumnavigation. I have sailed/crewed on the west coast and crewed to Hawaii from LA.

In my estimate about several thousand miles of coastal and off-shore will be sufficient to gain the experience necessary.

Two questions:
1. What is an optimal amount of training time/miles?
2. From SF area to where for coastal and off-shore training?

Thank you,

Andy
 

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What kind of boat? Not a San Juan 24, I hope :)

This strikes me as yet another of those unanswerable questions, only you will know when or if you're ready...

I'd suggest heading that north, a RT from SFO up to a spot like Sitka, or out to the Aleutians, would seem a good place to start...
 

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Bristol 45.5 - AiniA
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What kind of boat are we talking about? Doing a non-stop, rtw implies going south of the capes. From your experience it does not sound like you have background in the kind of conditions you are going to get - downwind, windy, often cold, big waves. If you have time and money you could do something like buying a spot in the Clipper race. Might give you some sense of the pressures of performance when it turns nasty.

Our circumnavigation was fairly conventional in route, except we went to Easter Island rather the Marquesas from the Galapagos, so I have quite a bit of offshore experience. I have no particular interest in doing a west about non-stop, solo, but I wonder if i would be prepared for the rigours of such a journey. It is very serious undertaking.
 

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The trip from the West Coast to Hawaii is undoubtedly one of the easiest trips one can make on a sailing vessel, unless one has a mutinous crew, which would be interesting, if one was single handing. Navigation isn't even needed as planes fly overhead every 20 minutes or so. It has been said that an old lady in a bathtub can sail from California to Hawaii. Hawaii to Tahiti is not much more difficult, but it does require navigating, and it is a thousand miles longer. Things like the ITCZ and the doldrums can make that a very tiring trip.
If you really want to know if you are physically and mentally prepared for a singlehanded circumnavigation, and your boat is as well, then I would suggest you do a solo sail from SF to Seattle, unquestionably one of the most challenging voyages one can attempt, under sail.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 · (Edited)
thank you for your replies!

@JonEisberg: Sitka sounds very interesting.

@benesailor: have a fair bit of endurance and mental conditioning experience.

@killarneysailor: maybe the real test is to round cape horn. but perhaps one should do it when they are ready for the circumnav. why tempt fate twice? i understand that the eastabout vs westabout is a someday decision. also, maybe good to deal with cape horn on the front end vs the tail end. will look into the clipper race.

@capta: mutiny on a boat with a crew of one. nice!
 

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Why nonstop? Wouldn't you want to stop and see all the amazing places you'll be going past? I want to sail around the world someday, but I want to see all the different places. Even if it's a couple days here, a couple days there.

You can do what you want, but I just can't see passing Tahiti or South Africa or going through the Mediterranean and not stopping.
 

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@killarneysailor: maybe the real test is to round cape horn. but perhaps one should do it when they are ready for the circumnav. why tempt fate twice?
Having rounded the horn, from east-to-west, I can tell you that actually rounding the horn is the easy part. getting there and getting away safely is the real challenge. remember that you will be in the Southern Ocean for MONTHS(!!). it will be grueling. it will be cold and wet unlike what you have experienced mountaineering. i am not saying not to follow your dreams, just to be sure you have a true sense of just what you are getting yourself into.

for some more information, check out the movie Deep Water, it focuses on Donald Crowhurst, but that's not what you should focus on. Nine sailors (eight very experienced) set sail in teh Sunday Times Golden Globe Race to attempt what you are considering and only ONE finished.
 

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Bristol 45.5 - AiniA
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When I mentioned the capes I was also talking about the long bits in the Southern Ocean in between. Spent some time with Peter Smith, the Rocna inventor, and he was rolled 180° on a passage from the Falklands to Cape Town which is pretty much what the OP is talking about. Peter's boat is a very stout 52' aluminum cutter that l lives in the high latitudes (he was on his way from Patagonia to Greenland when we met him). If that boat got hammered no 34' is optimal or even close.

I am with the suggestion to take time to smell the roses. If you want a bigger challenge than the coconut milk run, go west about below the capes, but at least there are a few very interesting places to stop along the way.
 
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I suppose if the OP looks up the rules for any of the solo globe races, and can qualify for any one of those, that would be "sufficient".

Although I'd think that just one week and five hundred miles at sea would also be sufficient training, if that week was spent during hurricane season and in a hurricane. Kind of a "pass/fail" fast course.

High altitude mountaineering...this is reminding me of the traffic jams (!) on Mt. Everest. Somehow, the wrong reason to go.
 

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美国华人, 帆船
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Hello!

I live in California (SF Bay Area) and would like to do a solo non-stop circumnav. I sail/crew in the Bay and have crewed to Hawaii from SF.

In my estimate about several thousand miles of coastal and off-shore will be sufficient to gain the experience necessary.

Two questions:
1. What is an optimal amount of training time/miles?
2. From SF area to where for coastal and off-shore training?

Thank you,

Andy
Good luck, it is certainly doable. Is it for the passion of seeing the world alone or the bragging rights. ? :)

If I were you, I would prefer less fanfare and just do it. I would rather cast off and sail west further and further way until it is too far and too late to turn around. Just hope the world is round, you wouldn't fall off. LOL.

Whatever your reasons, go for it. :)
 
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Just hope the world is round, you wouldn't fall off. LOL.
I do believe that that is no longer a worry for those setting sail on the high seas. If I remember correctly, I read something about that in a New York Times article from 1492, or there abouts.
 

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Wind Magic
I think we start with your chair in the room, then lower the temperature. Have a wind machine with an average speed of 30 knots +/- 30 knots, then have cold water splash about every 10 seconds or so while scary music is played. Finally I guess have a machine (no people of course) tear up $50 bills in front of you.
 

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Frankly the best advice I can give you is don't. I have a number of friends that race Mini's and Open 60's and if you need to ask the question here you are years away from being able to make a realistic shot of doing this.

I am not saying you should never try it, but you need to build up to it.

Start off doing some distance crewed races, then distance short handed races, try picking up some delivery jobs solo and crewed. The more experience you have the more realistically you can plan.

The trick to a non-stop cicumnavigation is that it is a constant race not against the weather but against supplies. In order of necessity:

1) electricity- yup even more important than food or water. Electricity is needed to operate the autopilot, which is the only way to keep going solo.
2) water - you can't carry enough for this trip so you need some wat to make it, and a backup
3) food - freeze dried works best but requires more water generation.

To supply these needs you need reliable electrical production of multiple forms, and multiple water production methods. The food you have to start with. The electrical production however slows you down, so you can't just carry a huge generator and lots of batteries, since then you won't have enough load space left over for the food.....



Frankly this is the hardest thing to do in sports. More people have claimed Everest than have solo circumnavigated. It is doable, but you need an honest look at what resources you can bring to the task. You can't just jump on any boat with west marine equipment and leave the dock. You need specialized equipment, a huge familiarity with all the ships systems, a support team, lost of knowledge about how to provision the boat. (Both food and repair equipment ) knowledge of how to fix every system on board, and then spend a few years learning how cope with the crushing mental problems lack of sleep and isolation cause.

Your high altitude climbing while impressive is nothing compared to this task.
 

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Hello!

I live in California (SF Bay Area) and would like to do a solo non-stop circumnav. I sail/crew in the Bay and have crewed to Hawaii from SF.

In my estimate about several thousand miles of coastal and off-shore will be sufficient to gain the experience necessary.

Two questions:
1. What is an optimal amount of training time/miles?
2. From SF area to where for coastal and off-shore training?

Thank you,

Andy
Andy,
I think for your trip, an S&S34 is an excellent choice. I have the same boat and she is rock solid. I would suggest reading several books written by those who have single handed non-stop around the world on S&S 34: Jon Sanders, Jesse Martin, and Jessica Watson. Note that Jesse Martin was 17 and Jessica Watson was 16, and David Dicks 17 at the time of their finishes. Jesse Martin wrote an excellent book and has a lot of technical information about how to sail an S&S34 in storms. Jesse Martin also has an excellent movie of his trip.

For those that do not understand why someone would want to do an non-stop circumnavigation, I question why does one want to stop at every port they can along the way. In todays world, most ports are the same, and stopping is a big expense. The real excitement would be sailing the Southern Ocean. But I guess we all have our own interest and desires.

If you are looking for an S&S34 I would plan to head to Australia, quite a few down that way for sale at excellent prices.

Here are links to books and videos:

Amazon.com: Lionheart - The Jesse Martin Story: Jesse Martin, Jesse Martin, Paul Currie: Movies & [email protected]@[email protected]@http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51M%[email protected]@[email protected]@51M%2BtEkdC9L

Lionheart: A Journey of the Human Spirit: Jesse Martin, Ed Gannon: 9781865083476: Amazon.com: [email protected]@[email protected]@http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/[email protected]@[email protected]@51QOYc1dLdL

http://www.amazon.com/s/?ie=UTF8&ke...aps&hvadid=3527188370&ref=pd_sl_301psvphpb_pp

True Spirit: The True Story of a 16-Year-Old Australian Who Sailed Solo, Nonstop, and Unassisted Around the World: Jessica Watson: 9781451616316: Amazon.com: [email protected]@[email protected]@http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/[email protected]@[email protected]@51jvmdjdrTL

This book is about a man that sailed around the world two times in a row, non-stop around the 5 great capes in an S&S34:
Lone Sailor: Jon Sanders, Sir Charles Court: 9780867780208: Amazon.com: [email protected]@[email protected]@http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/[email protected]@[email protected]@41BdJLbIA5L

Good Luck
 

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Frankly the best advice I can give you is don't. I have a number of friends that race Mini's and Open 60's and if you need to ask the question here you are years away from being able to make a realistic shot of doing this.

I am not saying you should never try it, but you need to build up to it.

Start off doing some distance crewed races, then distance short handed races, try picking up some delivery jobs solo and crewed. The more experience you have the more realistically you can plan.

The trick to a non-stop cicumnavigation is that it is a constant race not against the weather but against supplies. In order of necessity:

1) electricity- yup even more important than food or water. Electricity is needed to operate the autopilot, which is the only way to keep going solo.
2) water - you can't carry enough for this trip so you need some wat to make it, and a backup
3) food - freeze dried works best but requires more water generation.

To supply these needs you need reliable electrical production of multiple forms, and multiple water production methods. The food you have to start with. The electrical production however slows you down, so you can't just carry a huge generator and lots of batteries, since then you won't have enough load space left over for the food.....



Frankly this is the hardest thing to do in sports. More people have claimed Everest than have solo circumnavigated. It is doable, but you need an honest look at what resources you can bring to the task. You can't just jump on any boat with west marine equipment and leave the dock. You need specialized equipment, a huge familiarity with all the ships systems, a support team, lost of knowledge about how to provision the boat. (Both food and repair equipment ) knowledge of how to fix every system on board, and then spend a few years learning how cope with the crushing mental problems lack of sleep and isolation cause.

Your high altitude climbing while impressive is nothing compared to this task.



frankly I disagree on MANY points particularily the electricity statement!

you can sail aorund the world with no electricity if you wanted to...its already been done many times...even non stop

vito dumas on his lehg, and even motissier for inspiration on frugal basic, yet extremely well prepared circumnavgiations...

a good windvane and kerosene for the lamps...if you wanted to

while a non stop has supplies issues like mentioned I would never tell someone that without it(electricity) and an autopilot is what implies a go no go scenario and for sure not the first thing on a list...

I always would consider an autopilot as a backup to a windvane especially for a small to medium sized boat and voyage...remember simplicity and redundancy is an offshore sailors motto

I know Ill get flung to high hell for this and criticised but thats what opinions are for...

about the boat while the s and s 34 is a nice tried and trued design(kudos to casey for the links) there are many out there similiar and well built and to your liking some you can pack more than others...

your choice

search around

boats I like:

contessa 32, yankee 30, 38, islander 36, a westsail 32 or the bigger one, valiant 40s, cheoy lees, albergs, pearsons, etc..etc...etc...

a little inspiration(for me at least) on a very similar and inspired voyage

S/V Odyssey

very low key, low publicity, no stunts, just a young guy with a dream

he almost made it but you can see the type of boat, original plan, handling, preparations made...training etc...:) even bits on provisioning



oh one last thing 99 percent of people will harshly criticise, put you down, belittle and fear monger you into not doing it...

that 1% and your heart(and brains) is what counts...

oh btw you dont have to ever race to do what you want to do...yes racing helps to build skills(I should know I was a racing coach) and if you like to race cool, but its not a requisite:D

peace
 

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As far as power, you do not need a lot. My S&S 34 has circumnavigated (with stops through Panama) by PO. The boat has about 150 watt of solar panel with a 225 amp hour house battery and an engine start battery. Enough power to run the nav instruments, lights and radio. Stove is alchol non-pressurized. No refrigeration on board. Food would be dry or dehydrated- mix with water to cook or eat. The windvane needs no power- Monitor wind vane. Also have an auto helm if you want to run that, but that will use power- only used when engine would be running. As far as water- take what you can in tanks and jerry jugs below deck and refill from rain water off the main sail. Take a RO hand pump unit to be used in an emergency. This set up could take you around the world. Maybe add a few items like a wind generator.

As far as cost, a boat like an S&S 34 would set you back about $35k. Say another $20K to refit some items and spares (all labor provided by you). So for $55k you could be ready to go. Load up with $4k in food and provisions. Add another $7 k for foul weather gear and life raft and say Aloha. So for $66k your off.

When you get back, sell the lot for $45k and your only out of pocket for $21k.
That trip is only costing you less than a $1 a mile- not too bad.
 

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As far as power, you do not need a lot. My S&S 34 has circumnavigated (with stops through Panama) by PO. The boat has about 150 watt of solar panel with a 225 amp hour house battery and an engine start battery. Enough power to run the nav instruments, lights and radio. Stove is alchol non-pressurized. No refrigeration on board. Food would be dry or dehydrated- mix with water to cook or eat. The windvane needs no power- Monitor wind vane. Also have an auto helm if you want to run that, but that will use power- only used when engine would be running. As far as water- take what you can in tanks and jerry jugs below deck and refill from rain water off the main sail. Take a RO hand pump unit to be used in an emergency. This set up could take you around the world. Maybe add a few items like a wind generator.

As far as cost, a boat like an S&S 34 would set you back about $35k. Say another $20K to refit some items and spares (all labor provided by you). So for $55k you could be ready to go. Load up with $4k in food and provisions. Add another $7 k for foul weather gear and life raft and say Aloha. So for $66k your off.

When you get back, sell the lot for $45k and your only out of pocket for $21k.
That trip is only costing you less than a $1 a mile- not too bad.
Sorry, you my friend, are a dreamer. I think we all wish it was that easy and affordable, and that a 34' boat that has circumnavigated will fetch 45k.
 
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