Saturday, November 21, 2009

The Latest

Got home to Thousand Oaks after an awesome run down the coast to Florida. We had heavy weather, light whether, wind on the nose and wind behind us. I think Abby really learned a lot about the boat. We loaded it on a ship in Fort Lauderdale and it should be arriving around the first week in December. Till then she is working out, going to meetings and interviewing as she tries to get the last sponsors on board.

I've been busy with school, the gym and still going to lots of meetings. As for my next adventure, I'm training for an Everest climb and also planning out a possible North West Passage sailing route and a motorcycle trip down to Ushuaia, the southernmost city in the world.

Well turning 18 on the 29th finally gonna get my driver's licence.

Have a good Thanksgiving everyone!



Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Photos from Aboard Wild Eyes

Was having trouble with uploading blogs and photos. All seems sorted now. Here are a few shots from the trip. We should be pulling out today. Fort Lauderdale late tomorrow afternoon all being well.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Fort Pierce

So after 6 hrs of flying we landed in Rhode Island it was about 30 degrees when we got out of the airport at around 1am and found our way to rent a car. After a few wrong turns we got to the hotel, woke up the owner, got a room and crashed..

By the time we got to the yard the next day, Wild Eyes was already in the water. I spent the day working on the boat, wiring up alternators, tightening hose clamps, and loading up all the sails that were in a sail loft 4 stories up while my dad and Abby went all over the place looking for various bits and pieces. The cold is so bitter in Rhode Island you've really gotta keep moving to keep from freezing.

After finishing up the jobs on the boat I was checking out the yard. It was a really huge place with some amazing boats like a 100+ft racing cat and a couple 12 meter America's Cup boats. In my wanderings I met a Norwegian guy named Trond. He was first mate on a boat that had just sailed down from Iceland. There is some crazy sailing up there and we ended up crashing on his boat for a couple of nights while we waited for our weather window to open up.

Anyway, we also met some people from a mega yacht called is Ilsandia. We had dinner over on their boat and discussed weather, route and how to best dodge the Gulf Stream current. Over the next couple days we worked on the boat and got used to the cold weather.

On Halloween we went to a party at a local restaurant with our friends from Islandia. The next morning, we were on the boat before the sun came up and left the dock around 7am. We sailed out under full sail past the machines on the shore. Wild Eyes is extremely light and we put the first reef in before we hit open water. After a little struggle with the auto pilot we were off heading toward our first way point at 10knots.

The wind died a little during the day but filled in in the evening and by morning we were doing 15s in the pouring rain, freezing and wet, but tons of fun surfing down 10 foot waves. The weather stayed the same for the next 2 days - rainy and fast hitting a max speed of 24knots and regular 20s. It was smooth sailing till Cape Hatteras where we slammed head on in to the Gulf Stream and halved our boat speed.

My dad and I decided to head in shore and hopefully pickup the counter current. This worked a bit - no counter current but we got to a weaker part of the north bound Gulf Stream. The moon has been almost full and it is awesome to have the extra light when the sky is clear.

So we have had pretty smooth sailing till yesterday when the wind shifted on to the forward quarter and we started bashing into 20 knots. Heavy wind on the nose is hell on a racing sled meant for surfing down waves so after 8hrs of getting the hell kicked out of us my dad asked me to find a port to go into for the night. After looking through some detailed charts I found a bay called Fort Pierce so we changed course and sped along the 35 miles surfing down waves with the boat speed up in the teens. We got to the entrance just after the sun set. After a little engine trouble we managed to find the nav lights, headed in and found the public dock. We moored up to the pier for the night.

Have been doing a lot of work on the boat right now. Mike Smith, who helped with the electrical systems on Intrepid, came down from North Carolina and has been going over the electronic systems on Wild Eyes.

We are looking to head out of here as soon as the wind direction changes. Could be as late as Tuesday morning from today's forecast.

Well I've got to get back to it here. I'll let ya know when we get in to Fort Lauderdale. Till then, fair winds everybody.


Thursday, November 5, 2009

Surfing the Atlantic

I spoke with Zac yesterday. He had managed to get his sat phone antenna to work and was able to get a call out - though a rough one. The crew were enjoying Wild Eyes' speeds and were a few hundred miles out of Fort Lauderdale. Zac was enjoying being back at sea and was pretty excited to have made, at one point, 24 knots surfing down a wave.

For photos and more news see Abby's blog at

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