Thursday, July 9, 2009

So Close Yet So Far

Position: 07/09/09 1810Z 29 02N 117 43.9W

Thank you Mouse for the very detailed description of tacking. I am currently on a starboard tack and headed north of Guadelupe Island. Some time tomorrow I will be making a tack towards California which will bring me back to the USA. It has been relatively calm out here with light winds and calm seas. I am making decent progress - beats bashing any day.

It is still freezing cold out here all the time and I am wearing all of my foul weather gear.

After going over David's forecast and evaluating the progress I make tonight, we will make a decision as to whether or not to postpone my official return to Thursday. Sorry for the drama.

I made it to People Magazine (online). They wrote a great article with some new photos from Jen.,,20290119,00.html



Anonymous Anonymous said...

Quic and dirty graphic of Zac Tac'ing :-)

July 9, 2009 at 11:33 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Glad you're getting some better weather offshore. We're looking forard to your return----whenever it may happen. Safety first, dude.
Kodiak Mike in LArevas

July 10, 2009 at 12:20 AM  
Blogger Bill Mann said...

And all this time Mouse, I thought a tack was something I used to nail the fabric to the seat frame when building my furniture. Thank you for the explanation. It is amazing just how much I have learned this past year. One would think that I would have learned enough to say, "hey, what is an offshore tack?" instead of just sitting here in front of my monitor thinking 'way to go Zac. Keep on that offshore tack, not knowing that if you tacked offshore long enough, you would be back in Hawaii. But then I guess you would not be tacking, you would be heading towards Hawaii.

Reading between the lines Zac, I guess that you are saying that the earliest you will be in is Wednesday. Difficult on you and those who came in from out of town, but great for me. That means I can still hope to chase you down the pier with my scissors.

Keep on tacking. (Now that I know what I am saying.)

Bill Mann

July 10, 2009 at 2:10 AM  
Blogger Anita said...

Hi Zac!!!

Hey you're at the mercy of the'll get home when you get home!!

I am going to miss my morning, afternoon and evening routine of checking your blog.....maybe you can keep it up and chat with us now and again!!

So very proud of you :)
Waterloo NY
Captain SV "Wombat"

July 10, 2009 at 2:32 AM  
Blogger Willyboy said...

Zac... Frustrating for you to be seemingly just inching your way home, I'm sure.

I'd hoped to have a trip out to our Cypress office around the time of your return, but no such luck. I am sure it will be quite the event!

Keep the updates coming when you can - always great to hear from you.

Sail safe!

Cheers to you and all the ZacPack!

milford, ohio

July 10, 2009 at 4:33 AM  
Anonymous Scott Kuhner said...

Zac, It will be very exciting to have you finally complete your adventure. The only downside is that I will no longer be able to look forward to my morning fix of reading about your daily progress.

July 10, 2009 at 5:35 AM  
Blogger Alpha Otter said...

Hey Zac,

I woke up at 4:30am this morning, couldn't sleep, and one of the first places I checked online was your blog. It's incredibly exciting to see that you're nearing home. Praise God! I'm a California native, and I always love the feeling of returning to the homeland of California after being gone on a long trip. I can't even imagine how that will feel after being gone for over a year. Mind-blowing. It kinda reminds me of The Wallflowers song "Back to California" - where Jakob Dylan (Bob Dylan's son) sings about the rush and exhilaration of returning to California after being gone:

"Put our feet deep in the sand,
Let's leave behind these maps and handguns,
We're on our way back to California

We've got California in our eyes,
Come on and catch us if you can,
With California in our eyes,

Passing down through a valley full of lost sheep,
Straight is the gate, narrow is the walkway,
Mercury rising and poppies in bloom
This is the kind of thing that I can get used to..."

Anyways, just thought those lyrics were fitting for the occasion. I pray the Lord will put His hedge of protection around the Intrepid as He goes before you and brings you home safely into harbor. He is our strong tower!!! Amen! (and I emailed my church, and let them know about you so they could pray for you as you near the end of your journey)

Kevin Ott in Santa Barbara, CA.

p.s. bummer about that fix it ticket from the coastguard out of Ventura, CA., I go to Ventura all the time and always have to be extra wary of my speed to avoid getting a ticket - I guess their enthusiasm/vigilance in giving people tickets is the same out at sea!

July 10, 2009 at 5:57 AM  
Blogger Daveh said...

Man, Zac, just checked Grib data, light winds for the next 4-5 days, maybe some teens out of the NNW...

Push on home dude...


July 10, 2009 at 6:07 AM  
Blogger valntim said...

After some calculations I determined if Zac could travel about 50 nautical miles a day,he could make it in by Tues. Yesterday he travelled 80 nautical miles.
I hope he makes it! I can't revise my days off now. So like I said yesterday, I will be in MDR next mon. and tue. Will there be any other Zac Packer's around?
Tim Burns
Palm Springs, CA

July 10, 2009 at 6:24 AM  
Blogger Douglas Pistone said...

Hello Zac,

Thanks for the update. Please do not worry about the drama. Just do the best you can, sail safe, and we'll see you when you arrive. I know it's easy for me to say living so close. You can't control the weather and hopefully no one expects that from you. It's really out of your hands now. All I can ask of you is please sail safe and the docking day into MDR will come very soon.

Glad you're out of the Baha Bash. Enjoy the little sailing you have left. You must be getting anxious but please remain calm and cool, literally cool.

Zac's Sailing Home,
Douglas Pistone
MDR, California

July 10, 2009 at 7:34 AM  
Blogger kenintoronto said...


As Zac made a planned stop at Emerald Bay at Catalina Island after he left Marina Del Ray, doesn't his round the world obligation finish there. He can turn on his engine after that, and then turn it off as he is sailing up home channel.

July 10, 2009 at 7:35 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

dWishing you safe sunny warm wind of your choice! Calm water's and your web cam to work! More than excited for you on the last legs of your incredible journey!
We're cheering you on Zac,
Vancouver, Canada

July 10, 2009 at 7:44 AM  
Anonymous Your Oklahoma Well-Wisher said...

Zac – My oh my, seems like every other blog you have me holding my breath! I can’t imagine how long these last few days must feel to you – to be so close to home, so close to accomplishing this major amazing goal… and then to be out there, zig-zagging along, keeping on going every minute of every hour of every day, and freezing cold to boot… Is the anticipation taking over or are you just taking life on Intrepid minute by minute? Just wonder what’s going through your head – is it pure focus on the task at hand, or does your mind mostly wander to what’s waiting for you at MDR and beyond, or does it just bounce between it all or is it just all muddled together? I mean, here I am getting through daily tasks while filling with the anticipation of my family’s upcoming overseas trip, and that’s enough going on in my head!

It has been such a pleasure following your adventure for over a year. It’s been entertaining, but also has had positive impacts that I certainly wasn’t expecting! I’m fortunate and blessed to have grown up with many positive parental role models in my own parents, grandparents, and other family & friends, but I’ve found additional wisdom in Marianne & Lawrence. As I’m in the beginning stages of my own experience as a parent of twin 4 year-olds, I look forward to helping them achieve their dreams and goals in life with the same love & support your parents have shown you. The fellow Zac-Pac here on the blog and all the wonderful people that have helped you across the globe from big cities to the most remote of islands has solidified further my faith in humanity – our ability to help one another, find common ground, and be stronger in our diversity. And you, Zac, among all that you have done, if I had to boil it down to one word, it’s trust. Your actions have shown the power of trust – trust in one’s own abilities, trust in others (even complete strangers), trust in one’s faith, and trust in making dreams reality. Thank you so much for sharing this with us all!

Peace, Your Oklahoma Well-Wisher

PS – And Jen, your photos are gorgeous – so happy that you are getting national exposure through this – thank you, too, for sharing with us along the way!

July 10, 2009 at 8:05 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Capt. Zac,
You've got about 350 Nautical Miles to go yet?
Correct me if I'm wrong but I think you've already covered around 24,000 nautical keep everything in perspective,your right down the block from home!
Straight Wakes,
Mike S.

July 10, 2009 at 8:20 AM  
Anonymous Melanie said...

@ Mouse and others - Thanks for the description of "offshore tack." I not only understand it, but also know why it is implemented.

@ Kevin Ott - I always have to watch over my shoulder when traveling Rincon (between Ventura and SB). That's where I make my best time LOL!
Are you related to the SB "Otts?"

July 10, 2009 at 8:23 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Stay safe will arrive at just the right time!
Loved the explanation and picture of tacking....makes sense now...thanks... whoever posted it.

UK friend

July 10, 2009 at 8:45 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Good Morning Zac,

This morning while putting cushions out on my porch furniture and hanging out the flag, I read a quote from Ralph Waldo Emerson that I have framed out there. It seems so appropriate for you this day:

"Do not go where the path may lead. Go instead where there is no path and leave a trail."

I know that the trails you leave will be God lead, Zac. You go to new places and meet new people and forever change them and they you. Leave the message of Jesus among all of the other things you leave those you meet.

I pray you will have Cali in your sights soon.

I watched "Morning Light" yesterday and was so captured by the story and the young lives touched by that adventure. Can't wait for your story.

Go With God, He will continue to provide your wind today,
Bend, OR

July 10, 2009 at 9:11 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dude! I've been reading this blog since almost the start. You need a beer, man!! I wish I could be be in LA to greet you with one!!

July 10, 2009 at 10:54 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Zac,

Know how bone-chilling wind off that water can be, especially when you're not used to it, and have little body fat. You need to EAT LOTS OF PROTEIN, even if it is just cold chili con carne or beef stew out of the can! Digesting the protein will generate body heat.

Be sure you have on a good insulative layer, like fleece or sweats under your "foulies." Learned this the hard way: coating on foulies, if too close to the skin, transfers the cold into your body. If you can't find your sweats, improvise. Of course, be sure what you wear doesn't restrict your movement.

Also, keep well hydrated!

I'm sure this is just echoing what you are hearing from your mom!

Sending warming thoughts your way from Woodland Hills, CA,


July 10, 2009 at 12:55 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Love the shark story. What a life lesson learned in "look before you leap" :-))

Generally it takes kids what, 2 or 3 times to learn NOT to touch the hot stove, and adults maybe 50 times not to 'do it again' [whatever 'it' is]. And here's Zac learning the best and biggest and scariest life lesson of 'look before you leap' :-)

Into the ocean with a school of sharks beneath him.

Switch the lights on first, have a looksee then leap :-)

That's a beautiful moment that defines Zac's course in the rest of his life.


July 10, 2009 at 3:42 PM  
Blogger NomadRip said...

From the People interview: "Although he still has a few hundred miles left in the voyage, Sunderland is already eyeing his next adventure. "Lately, I've been thinking about dirt-biking across Africa on some trail no one has ever ridden," he says. "Or maybe hot-air ballooning over some mountain."

Over on the ADVenture Rider forums, there are plenty of ride reports of people who ride all kinds of places. This ride in Angola, Africa is probably the best:

BTW, the people on there have been following your ADVenture, even though it's not a motorcycle trip. You embody the spirit of that forum, even if it's on a boat instead of 2-wheels. We've been watching since last July when we first heard of your trip:

Having grown up in Agoura, I was especially interested. I'm in Florida now, or I'd be there to see you come in for sure.

I hope your final tack is quick and problem-free.


July 11, 2009 at 11:50 AM  
Blogger Tad said...

Dear Zac,

Just EPIC! The story, the sea, the Boy/man....

Do not be surprised by all the offers you will get to make a movie with _________ A-list actor.

I'm sure you have heard this before, and will many time over in many ways...but dude...You are an inspiration to us all. And by, "us" I mean the World.

I build and test Satellites here at Boeing in El Segundo. In fact, one of them that we are working on right now is the latest GPS model. If you feel so inclined, (and if you have time) I will be honered to give you a personalized tour someday. Any time you like.

I hope I can Kayak out to see the mighty Intrepid come into Marina Del Rey on Thurday morning. It will be an thrill for one and all to see you home.

All my best,


July 12, 2009 at 7:04 PM  

Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home