Saturday, June 21, 2008

June 21, 2008

Current Position (as of 9:00pm PT):

http://maps.google.com/maps?f=q&hl=en&geocode=&q=29.7819,-123.0535&ie=UTF8&z=12&om=1

Position link sent from my Spot.

There was no wind again last night. I had to head off course so that the tiller pilot would steer. I went 11 miles backwards! As my course was heading towards Guadelupe Island off of Baja Caifornia, I was remembering the late afternoon when my family arrived there on our cruise to Mexico. We had been sailing for a day and a half when we arrived and had just dropped anchor when a panga (Mexican fishing boat) pulled up along side us. After lots of Spanglish and sign language, 12 live lobsters were plopped on our deck in exchange for a 12 pack of cheap beer. As a kid I remember being totally excited. My mom and dad tell the story from a different angle. They were exhausted and not really in the mood to contain, kill and cook 12 lobsters! My dad pulled their heads off and removed some tube that was not supposed to be eaten. My mom was down below cooking them and serving them with melted butter. They were good times. But today it is canned soup alone.

The swells have smoothed out so that even though there is no wind at least I'm not rolling around anymore. I was up early and spent a few hours checking the rigging and life lines. I was able to get all of my SailMail which is the email service that comes through the Single Side Band radio via a special modem called a Pactor III. I hadn't been able to check it recently because the frequencies were always busy or else the rolling of my boat made it difficult to make the connection at all. I had great reception today and was able to get all my backlogged emails. It has been warm and sunny and with the calm I actually made my first hot meal since my bacon and eggs at Emerald Bay. Even heating a can of soup is a big job out here. First I have to move the spare deisel container from under the cabinet, then find the pump, pump up the alcohol reservoir and then light the fire. I had clam chowder with a toasted onion bagel. Very nice!! I have begun to take a nap every afternoon. This afternoon the wind picked up a little bit and I am sailing along at about 3 knots. This is great! Compared to going backwards that is. The forecast calls for increasing winds tonight and tomorrow. I should be telling a different story then.

I spoke to my dad today for the first time since leaving. He had been on 2 yacht deliveries. On the way to San Francisco he had terrible weather and really rough seas. On the way back south he had no wind! It was good to talk boat mechanics and weather with him.

The link below is to a friend named Jenn Edney's blog. She is a photographer for the Ventura County Star who was assigned to my story way back. She has taken a bunch of her photos and made a photo essay.

http://jennedney.blogspot.com/2008/06/teen-chases-dream.html

Not much more to say for now. Looking forward to making some headway tomorrow.

Cheers,

Zac

29 Comments:

Blogger Phoebe said...

Hey Zac,
You are doin awesome! Even if you went back a few miles...keep on keepin on. i love reading your blog. your funny. i have a question...do you have food just stocked up for four weeks on your boat? sending wind your way!
Phoebe

June 21, 2008 at 10:54 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am hooked on reading your daily blog. It is amazing a person of your age having the maturity and drive to do what you are doing. It takes tremendous faith and drive. Keep it up and may the winds take you along the way safely!

June 21, 2008 at 11:09 PM  
Blogger Becky said...

The photo essay was very nice. I loved the story of the 12 lobsters for a 12 pack of cheap beer. It reminded me of a joke. Maybe you've heard it, but here it is in case you haven't.
P.S. I checked at midnight and there was no blog. At 2:30 a.m. there is one. I suppose all will not always go well with posting blogs, but I was a little worried! (mother-hen) I hope you have a really great day and make up for going backwards. :-)

Good Trade
A traveling saleswoman is driving toward home in Arizona when she sees an Indian woman hitchhiking. She stops the car and the Indian woman gets in. After a bit of small talk, the Indian woman notices a brown bag on the front seat. "What's in the bag?", she asks. "It's a bottle of wine. I got it for my husband".

The Indian woman is silent for a while, then nods and says,
"you made a good trade".

June 22, 2008 at 1:24 AM  
Blogger Edo said...

Maybe one day I'll let u taste some italian' style lobsters. No butter please!!! Just italian way.
I agree with Becky about the "photo essay". Beautiful job. Take care of you and be faithful (well, I'm sure you are), the right wind is just around the corner.

June 22, 2008 at 4:31 AM  
Blogger Ptolemy said...

Does your location at the daily google map link show up as essentially nothing (a bunch of question marks in each quadrant) because you ARE in the middle of nowhere? Thinking of you all the time and following along -- you're very kind to your readers!

June 22, 2008 at 4:39 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Zac! Yeah you don't want to be headed back to Guadalupe. I've been there fishing for tuna, but after last year I'm not sure I'll go back - it has become infested with great whites. It was impossible to land a fish without a chunk missing.

Regular food and rest, that's the answer. You have to stay healthy.

YOU CAN DOIT!

From Keith in SoCal

June 22, 2008 at 6:43 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The doldrums, the deafening noise of halyards slapping against the mast, going backwards, rolling in the swell, and canned soup ... the life of a blue water sailor. Solitude, sunsets, the moon rising, the stars, water rushing under the hull as you sail along at 6 knots and the feeling that overcomes you upon the first sight of land make it all worth while.
The trials that you are facing now are preparing you for your journey. Stay focused on your goal and enjoy every minute of your adventure.
Great job unhooking the halyard from the mast btw! Going up the mast in that swell would have really been no fun at all!

Isn't it funny how your thoughts always turn to food on a long passage?
Take care and hoping the wind picks up soon.

Tammy

June 22, 2008 at 7:03 AM  
Blogger Jim Fullton said...

Hi Zac,
I thought I'd send you a little puzzler to allow your mind some recreation from the routine of daily life on the Intrepid. Perhaps it'll give you something to ponder during your afternoon nap.

I was driving behind a car on the interstate the other day and it had a bicycle mounted in a bike rack attached to the back bumper. The front wheel of the bike wasn't locked so it was free-wheeling in the turbulence behind the car. Now, my bright young man, being someone of infinite resource and sagacity, does the spinning of the bicycle wheel increase or decrease the drag upon the car?

If you enjoy trying to figure this one out, let me know and I'll send another.

Highest regards,
Jim

June 22, 2008 at 8:11 AM  
Blogger bill said...

Going great there Zac. You made it past the lonely Friday night, back peddled a bit and gone forward again.

As I sit here on a beautiful Sunday morning with my Bagel, Cream Cheese and Lox, and think of you with your canned soup (Yes, you may reach through the computer and smack me aside the head with with a 2 x 4) :-)

A little hint. When posting a link, use < a href="what every you are linking to" target="new" >< /a >

the TARTET="NEW" will open a new window so that when one is finished with the link and closes the page, they will still be on your site instead of closing either the browser or your site.

Keep up the great work.

Bill Mann
bill@barstools4u.com

June 22, 2008 at 9:09 AM  
Blogger Peterkg1 said...

Hey Zac,

Thanks for the link to the Teen Chases Dream photo essay. I wanted to come up and see you off, but had family here, and was in San Diego at the US Open. So now I feel like I did see you off. Loved the story about the lobster. So your dad was sailing North, and you are sailing South? How great to be able to talk to him and compare experiences. When I think about how others probably could not keep in touch with loved ones via email or sat phone between stops, It makes me so happy for you that you can. Have a great day ahead!

June 22, 2008 at 9:19 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I, too, am enjoying the blog so far and the story of the lobster-beer trade. I tried the link to your location but didn't see anything. So, I plugged in the coordinates to another map software that I have (google earth) and I clearly see your location. Then, measuring it from shore, you appear to be approximately 432 miles West of Mexico and NW of Cabo. I would have gone & said 'hi' to your dad in SF had your post been earlier regarding his location.
DBillings803@yahoo.com

June 22, 2008 at 9:47 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hello Zac,
Keep up the good work. Wishing you fair winds and seas.
Gordon

June 22, 2008 at 10:35 AM  
Anonymous TCocco said...

Good Morning, Zac.....following your blog closely.....well written, very informative. Sailing backwards and have canned clam chowder makes for an interesting day! Stay safe, stay teathered! There's lots of Moms out here watching you!
tammy

June 22, 2008 at 10:39 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Rite on man,
I love what you are doing, being a true adventurer. Most people never find the time to do what you are doing. Stay safe, and take in all that you can.
Peace
Will

June 22, 2008 at 10:47 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Awesome post Zac. Sounds like you are making some headway. I purchased my sailing fundamentals book so I can understand all the terminology your using and uderstand points of sail. This is totally awesome. At times I feel like I am on the boat with you. Keep up the good spirit! It sounds like you are really facing these challenges in the proper perspective. After this first week, I think you are going to get some really good winds.

Chris, Alhambra, CA

June 22, 2008 at 11:58 AM  
Blogger Jessica Eiden said...

Zac,

Great job with the updates. I'm glad everything has smoothed out a bit. I look forward to reading more about your adventure.

Cheers,
Jess

June 22, 2008 at 12:37 PM  
Blogger brantandtia said...

Hey Zac,

Our family is following your journey as well and the "junkraft" which launch a few weeks prior to yours. We just notice that both of your are near Guadlupe Island today. So look our for a raft built out of 15,000 plastic bottles, they are headed to hawaii to study the gyre...check out blog if you have a free minute (ha ha). You are doing GREAT !
Tia Brant, Diego and Niko (malibu)

June 22, 2008 at 1:16 PM  
Blogger Anvoy said...

Zac,
I think you are living a lot of people's dream out there! i am definitely going to keep track of your progress. its fun reading your co-ordiantes on google map. is it possible to see some short videos, from the middle of no-where?
my best wishes are with you.
Anvoy

June 22, 2008 at 4:41 PM  
Anonymous Chris said...

Hey Zac,

I enjoy your daily blog. You are setting a course that many can only dream about. Rudyard Kipling (1865-1936) wrote a poem called "The Explorer". He starts it out as follows:

"There's no sense in going further-it's the edge of cultivation,"
So they said, and I belived it-broke my land and sowed my crop-
Built my barns and strung my fences in the little border station
Tucked away below the foothills where the trails run out and stop:

Till a voice, as bad as Conscience, rang interminable
changes
On one everlasting Whisper day and night repeated-so:
"Something hidden. Go and find it. Go and look behind the
Ranges-
"Something lost behind the Ranges. Lost and waiting for you.
Go!"

It is a treasure when one hears something that encourages them to leave known and familiar patterns. It is a treasure to hear and read the unfolding of your story.

Chris

June 22, 2008 at 5:12 PM  
Blogger dallen57 said...

Hey Zac,
Sometimes life is two steps forward and one back. Keep your head up and keep pushing forward. I still have a hard time believing when I read your blog that you are 16. You are so beyond your young years. Take care!
david
p.s. the naps are good for you!

June 22, 2008 at 5:30 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Regarding the links to Google Maps - if you zoom out (a lot) the western California coast will show up on the map.

Zac, you are an amazing inspiration! I hope the wind appeared for you today.

June 22, 2008 at 5:48 PM  
Anonymous RZ said...

Question:
What inspired you to name your boat Intrepid?

RZ

June 22, 2008 at 8:10 PM  
Blogger Bacchus said...

Man, what a sweet deal. This trip is true, raw adventure and this blog is now a part of my daily internet reading. Hope you're keeping a good journal to publish into a book. The world needs more adventurists like you for inspiration of the younger generations. Godspeed, mate.

June 22, 2008 at 8:59 PM  
Blogger Kate said...

It certainly looks like a lot happened while I couldn't check up on the blog! It's too bad about the eleven miles backwards, but at least the wind seems to be back. Great story, by the way.

Safe journey,
~Kate~

June 22, 2008 at 9:33 PM  
Anonymous SoCal Surfer said...

Pretty cool to be able to talk to your dad and get all that help from him. I bet Joshua Slocum would have liked that!
I'm thinking about the storms off the Phillipines right now and hoping you'll miss them. Typhoons are incredible. Stay healthy and alert...By the way, incredible beach day today...almost like the tropics!! with some of that surf from the swells that have been bouncing you around.

June 22, 2008 at 9:49 PM  
Blogger Narami said...

Hello!
I found out about your adventure a little late, but here I am :o) I just wanted to let you know your story is very inspiring, it is so refreshing to know of such a brilliant young man!
I will be reading you and wishing you a safe and beautiful journey.

Blessings!
(from the warm waters of Puerto Rico!)

June 22, 2008 at 9:58 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

my son and i are tracking you each day on a nautical map. mapquest and google can no longer pinpoint you out to sea. so please keep sending us your position. thanks charley

June 23, 2008 at 7:30 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Pulled the heads off of lobsters????!!! Isn;t that cruel, I think it is. How can anyone do that??

June 23, 2008 at 11:31 AM  
Blogger dallen57 said...

Hey Zac, Sounds like things are going pretty good for you. Been checking in every day and enjoying your journey. I tell you I learn something everyday from you. I never heard of the garbage patch. I am reading about it now. Keep up the great work and I am praying for you every night. Stay safe! Are you eating?
david

June 26, 2008 at 8:06 PM  

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