Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Into The North Atlantic

Bermuda is growing on me, but it's time to move on. Planning to set sail for The Azores (specifically Horta on Faial Island) this afternoon (Tuesday the 18th). Here is the current set of photos from The North Atlantic (including Bermuda). 

Friday, June 14, 2013

Florida to Bermuda

     Departed the dock in Goodland 1400 local time, Tuesday 28 May. I managed to navigate back up the Marco River without running aground, though there was a close call because one of the channel markers was almost totally obscured by an Osprey nest. It was pretty much a continuous downpour and squally conditions until Capri Pass where we sailed into The Gulf Of Mexico. Nice sail down to The Florida Keys. Decided to go out the way we came in, via Boca Grande Channel, next to Marquesas Keys. It then took four tacks in the easterlies to make the desired course up The Florida Strait.
     Friday night Twister was galloping past Miami at 9 knots (with a good boost from The Gulf Stream) in boisterous conditions. Looking west I could see the lit-up highrises, and in the east the moon was rising. Magic.
     Just past The Bahamas and still trucking along in The Gulf Stream, I was feeling discouraged because the best angle I could sail in the easterly winds was 10 degrees, while the course for Bermuda is 70 degrees, and a wave had just come through the partially open hatch and doused my bed (the rest of the interior is much drier than before, though. Thanks, Bridget, for all your help rebedding portholes and tightening deck hardware).  The electronic auto pilot (which I pretty much only use while I motor) is dead (I opened it up and the motor is rusted to bits) as is one of the two solar panels. Things got better from then on.
     Definitely in The Sargasso Sea. Long streaks of Sargassum as far as I can see. Unfortunately it keeps  knocking the servo rudder off the wind-vane autopilot (which is designed to release rather than breaking off it it hits something hard). The boat then rounds up into the wind and the sails start flapping. I then have to hang off the stern to reset the servo rudder. This happened around 100 times per day for the last 2-3 days into Bermuda which made for some sleepless nights.
     Arrived St. George's, Bermuda the morning of Sunday June 9 just as a ridge of high pressure set up over Bermuda and left the area pretty much becalmed for the next 3 days.
      Bermuda is lovely, really, though a little conservative for my taste. I've been chastised for walking around without my shirt on, which is against the law apparently. What I've seen of the underwater scenery is quite impressive.  Based on the latest forecast, Tuesday June 18 might be a good day for Twister to set sail for The Azores.

Monday, June 10, 2013


Twister arriving Bermuda the morning of Sunday June 09.