Thursday, August 20, 2009

Sailing Updates....

If you click on the map it will enlarge and it easier to see their course!

03/ 09 / 09 : They are there!!!! Team DB has arrived at the marina at La Gomera. They had another very good run, Good winds still coming from the North. They love the island and it looks like it was a good move to go to to La Gomera, instead of Tenerife. So after the initial struggle to get to the coast of Spain & Portugal and the breakdown of Capt Dan, the second week has proved to be really good with light to moderate winds from the North. And of course a bit of Kiwi ingenuity to resurrect Capt Dan... which made a huge difference. We are all looking forward to hearing the stories and catching up with our intrepid sailors! Well done guys! Current coordinates are Lat: 28N 05'00", Long: 17W 06'00".
02/ 09 / 09 : Another good 24 hrs for Team DB. The winds have still been pretty light, about 10kn NE, but they are making good progress anyway. They are thinking that they might go to La Gomera, SW of Tenerife. The thinking is that it should be less commercialised, so hopefully easier to get a mooring. So all going to plan , they should be there in another 30 odd hours. Current coordinates are Lat: 30N 25'00", Long: 16W 04'00".
01/ 09 / 09 : They are getting close! They have managed to cover a lot of ground even though they have had very light winds. Sounds like they have been using the gennaker a lot to do this. All going to plan they hope to arrive at the Canaries either Thursday night or Friday morning. Current coordinates are Lat: 32N 25'00", Long: 15W 30'00".
31/ 08 / 09 : The DB is cruising with another good run in the last 24 hours. They are sounding very happy, and have a good sleep for about 11 hours - just as well Capt Dan is back on board! Jon has put out a request... If anyone knows of a cheap mooring in Tenerife, can you please email the details to his sat phone. You can do this by going to and sending a message to the following number: 881631641780 . Current coordinates are Lat: 34N 19'00", Long: 14W 50'00".
30/ 08 / 09 : Good news! Jon has fixed Capt Dan so it looks like the crew might be able to get some sleep. It sounds like they are both pretty tired so the return of Capt Dan is very welcome. Current coordinates are Lat: 36N 12'00", Long: 13W 53'00".
29/ 08 / 09 : Well the crew on the DB are doing really well. They have had a record 24hrs covering about 150nm, which works out to almost 6kn ph. The winds are due to ease a little , but still coming from the North and up to 20kn, so that will be plenty to push them on to the Canaries. Current coordinates are Lat: 38N 04'00", Long: 13W 18'00".
28/ 08 / 09 : Another great day sailing with good progress made as the wind is coming from the north at 25+kn. Things sound like they have been pretty uncomfortable due to the high seas and an equipment malfunction... Capt Dan has packed up, as you will know Jon replaced his previous autopilot Meggie with the incredibly reliable Capt Dan - it has now been proved that Capt Dan is not so reliable so they are continuing on steering without him. Current coordinates are Lat: 40N 41'00", Long: 12W 40'00".
27/ 08 / 09 : Finally the long awaited northerlies have hit and they have made some more progress. Sounds like they are cruising at about 6 knots so they are definitely on their way again. Current coordinates are Lat: 42N 43'00", Long: 11W 38'00".
26/ 08 / 09 : Cant give you much of an update on today other than position. The big news is that Quinn Smart (First mate Shane Smart's new son) arrived safe and sound and will shortly be recruited to the Double Bruyn for many an off shore sailing adventure I think. Current coordinates are Lat: 44N 33'00", Long: 10W 34'00".
25/ 08 / 09 : Wind on the nose again and very strong. They are hove to now in preparation for the gale. It looks like it will only last about 12 hours and should be a bit calmer after that. The wind will shift to the west and later in the week to the North which is just what they need. Current coordinates are Lat: 45N 0'00", Long: 10W 0'00".
24/ 08 / 09 : The sailing has picked up and the team are getting closer to the Spanish coast. They have had a great run in the last 24 hours covering about 120 nautical miles. The wind is from the west at the moment at about 15kn... so just what they are after to start covering some ground (or sea as the case maybe). Current coordinates are Lat: 46N 23'00", Long: 09W 47'00".
23/ 08 / 09 : The sailors are still struggling on, they have almost cleared the shelf and will be expecting calmer seas soon. The wind still isnt ideal however it should change to the west soon and that will help get them moving. Current coordinates are Lat: 48N 6'00", Long: 08W 57'00". 22/ 08 / 09 : The wind is still presenting a bit of an issue for our sailors coming from the SW at the moment. However they have made some pretty good progress in the last 24 hours and when they last spoke to Hendrick they were in good spirits and enjoying the trip. Current coordinates are Lat: 48N 44'00", Long: 07W 13'00".
21/ 08 / 09 : Another slow day for the crew as they have dealt with little wind and what was about was directly on the nose. Sounds like there was an issue with the furling and they had to use their Storm Jib which has slowed them down. This appears to be all fixed now and they are waiting on some wind! Current coordinates are Lat: 49N 26'00", Long: 05W 16'00".
20/ 08 / 09 : They are off! Jon and Jess cast off at about lunchtime today and are on their way to the Canaries - another exciting voyage for the Double Bruyn and its crew. It sounds like the first leg was a little slow, the wind is on the nose at the moment so it is slow going. The wind is supposed to change in their favour overnight so hopefully they will get a bit further on. When they checked in this evening they had covered 27 nautical miles. Current coordinates are Lat: 49N 56'00", Long: 04W 11'00".

Friday, August 14, 2009

Voyage to the Canaries

So here begins the next chapter..! Almost one year to the day on from our arrival in Brighton, the DB is off again, this time heading south to the Canary Islands. The Queens country certainly served her purpose as a great place to revamp and fix the boat, while also providing some fun sailing and plenty of mishaps as well ;-)
Sailing means different things for different people
Although i don't plan to set off cruising again until the end of the year, I was keen to get the boat out of the UK before the winter set in. Also, as the idea for next year is to explore Brazil and South America, i wanted to break up the 7000 odd mile passage a bit hence the run to the Canaries.
Now we're in Plymouth and hopefully will set off Wednesday night. I had a great sail here with Pete and William, although as the wind was on the nose the whole time we had to tack our way up the English channel.
It was cool though as we were able to try a few of the new systems on the boat and also iron out a few of the crinkles. I've replaced my auto-pilot 'Meggie' (sorry Mike and Kylie!) with a stronger more reliable version now named 'Capt Dan'. There's two reasons why the AP got called Dan - Firstly, I love sailing with Dan and he's a good man to have on the helm at any time, but more importantly if she ever goes off course i'll cherish mocking him for not paying attention ;-) Also big thanks to Steve for very kindly building me a new set of kitchen drawers (these have plagued us on the DB since Florida).

For crew to the Canaries i'm very lucky to have Eskimo Jess on board (With far more sailing tales than myself its a bit like the kids in Scooby Doo where she's really just making me look good all the time) Its a 1500mile passage and i'd like to think we'll do it in less than 14 days. If we're making good time it would be cool to stop in at Mederia along the way, even if only for a few pints and a good meal.

We even had time to try our hand in the Fastnet Race before we left

Following in the footsteps of great sailors Mick and Debbie Baker, and my mate Robin Knox Johnston, our first obstacle will be the Bay of Biscay. Hopefully we don't see to many sea monsters. Once clear of the coast of Northern Spain it should be plain sailing heading south, hopefully with the wind behind us.

Right on. I've got the sat phone working again so hopefully can get some weather updates from the oldman. Nae and Smarty have very kindly offered to update this blog with my progress on the map, a top effort as the poor girl is about to have her baby and i can imagine little Jonny will be occupying most of her time!

If anyones keen to send us a txt (unfortunately i can't reply) you can click on the below link to do so. My sat phone no. is +8816 31641780.

Take care, big thanks to all those who helped get me and DB outa here.