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Thread: LongPac 2017 Tracking and Position Reporting + Chatter

  1. #51
    Join Date
    May 2015
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    Redwood City
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    656

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    Quote Originally Posted by Submarino View Post
    . A soaking, dodger-less ride and tight cramped quarters for a 6'2"
    Ah! I feel for you as I can relate to that being 6'6" in an Olson 30.

    Great report, thanks for posting and congrats!
    P___/)___J
    Solo RTW

  2. #52
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
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    San Francisco Bay Area
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    Quote Originally Posted by JimQuanci View Post
    As the last boats are creeping in... a little blow by blow...

    Prestart...
    Expedition forecast a a quick race...
    .
    .
    .
    I need to figure out what is amiss with my AIS transponder as I had it on the while time... though Vessel Finder doesnt see me... MarineTraffic does.
    Nice report,a nd w well sailed race (with headaches). Thanks, Jim!
    S-2 7.9: "Wildcat of Loch Awe"
    1968 Selmer Series 9 B-flat and A clarinets
    Piper One Design 24, Hull #35; "Alpha"

  3. #53
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    San Francisco Bay Area
    Posts
    1,253

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    Quote Originally Posted by Submarino View Post
    From a small boat

    I was really glad to actually sail after all the preparations.
    .
    .
    .

    Glad everyone is back in Safely, Canít wait to hear the stories from the Other Nuts!

    P.S. John on the Santa Cruz 27 Crazy Rythm's is actually crazy (but hardcore) for going thru this gauntlet. A soaking, dodger-less ride and tight cramped quarters for a 6'2"
    Thanks for the report!
    S-2 7.9: "Wildcat of Loch Awe"
    1968 Selmer Series 9 B-flat and A clarinets
    Piper One Design 24, Hull #35; "Alpha"

  4. #54
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Posts
    95

    Default JouJou Longpac Report

    This was my first multi-day offshore race, my first time beyond the Farallones, and the first time managing myself and my boat over a much longer period of time and distance. My goal was to qualify for the SH Transpac and learn as much as possible in the process. In the end I had a disappointing finish to the LongPac. However, I feel that I accomplished all of my major goals in entering the race. Here follows a short re-cap of my experience on JouJou.

    We had ideal weather for the sail out, and looking back at the tracker I seemed to hold my own and then some. My rudder started to clank alarmingly and periodically bind up on the first day and I considered retiring before the Farallones. I alerted the race committee to the potential rudder problems and decided to keep going and to monitor the situation. My first night was a struggle as I could not sleep. This was my first night at sea in JouJou and between the adrenaline and the anxiety of barreling along in 18 kts of wind in total darkness I just could not settle in. I finally found a spot on the floor of the cockpit (!) where I could get comfortable. I got perhaps 30 min of sleep total that night. Not good.

    The second day was in a word: glorious. Perfect sailing conditions for hours and hours. I ended up close hauled for the last 50 miles to the turn-around point, hitting the mark at 8:00 PM. This was four hours behind Green Buffalo, with whom I had crossed tacks two hours earlier. I waved as we passed, but apparently Jim was down below sleeping one of his 10 hours that day, or mixing cocktails, or whatever else he does on these races. I knew that he was going to kill everyone in the race, but he could at least try to make it look a bit harder.

    On the second day it felt like my rudder had stabilized, but in retrospect I think I had just become accustomed to the stiffness of the steering and that we were sailing in pretty benign conditions.

    On the third day things began to unravel. The wind went from 15-18 knots overnight to 25-27 knots, gusting to 30. My target course back to SF had me at ~90 AWA, and beam-reaching in the growing seas got more and more difficult as the day progressed. There seemed to be two wave trains, one dominant train that I had to fight against, and a lesser train that actually helped a bit. It is where they mixed chaotically that there were problems. By mid-day I was getting smacked around like a toy. The biggest problem was with the dominant train on the beam where I would periodically get hit by the breaking wave crest, filling the cockpit and spinning me helplessly into the wind. This happened 6-7 times before I gave up and bore off. At 110 AWA it was much better, but this put me on a course for Monterey, not SF. My autopilot under these conditions was completely useless, so I hand steered for 12 hours straight. And my rudder was binding up so much that It was getting more and more difficult to make the sharp moves necessary to avoid wiping out. At this point I resigned myself to running downwind to spare the boat and to avoid catastrophic rudder failure. Looking back at the tracking data from other boats, it looks like if I had just held on for a couple of more hours things would have improved and I would have been able to head up to SF. Oh, well. Always easy in retrospect.

    Having borne off, by midnight I was on course for Monterey with 10+ hours ahead of me. My foggy brain finally began to explore other options. The wind was down to 18 knots by then and I realized that I could head up to HMB at 60 AWA and that the autopilot could actually handle the conditions. So I sailed for a couple of hours on that tack, managing to sleep a bit. I further realized that by heading up to 40 AWA I could make SF, which was ~50 nm away. In retrospect, I realized that I could have beat back north and finish under sail, but the constant anxiety about the rudder took its toll on my judgment and I just wanted to get the boat back home in one piece. So I dropped the jib, started the engine, and motor-sailed back to SF. Of course, the moment I started the engine the wind dropped to a lovely 15 knots, the seas disappeared, and there was a full moon and clear skies and a dome of stars above. Utterly predictable.

    In conclusion, I am disappointed in not finishing the race, particularly as it now clear that it was possible. I the process though, I learned an enormous amount about myself, the boat, and longer-term race management. In that respect, the race accomplished exactly what it was designed to do: serve as a stepping stone to the SH Transpac. According to my tracker data, I sailed 415 nm before retiring, so I believe that I managed my Transpac qualification. And I have a year to implement all the lessons learned. Meanwhile, I will be hauling out the boat and having a look at those rudder bearings. A job I clearly should have done before the race. And I plan on only mellow day sails on the Bay, perhaps a trip up the Delta Ė I am done with the ocean for a while.

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  5. #55
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    San Francisco
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    65

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    Sorry I missed you... how close did we pass it other? Next time buzz me on 16. Neighbors are scarce out there and need to be embraced...

  6. #56
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    111

    Default Good read!

    Quote Originally Posted by tboussie View Post
    I am done with the ocean for a while.

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    I enjoyed reading about your adventure and tribulations. "Failure" in the 2011 Long Pac did not feel good either, but it paid huge dividends later. I think you did Well! The decisions made seemed like wise prudent seamanship to me.

    I am done with the ocean, too - for at least a month. Somehow I am reminded of that scene in Clockwork Orange where the antagonist is adversely conditioned to violence by forcing his eye lids open and being subjected to many TV images. Well, I get queasy just looking at the sea or my left over food now. Damaged goods I am!

    Someone mentioned the results at the end of an email today and I really didn't want to know. Can someone put my boat away?

    JB

  7. #57
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
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    111

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    Quote Originally Posted by JimQuanci View Post
    #1 going out and big jib top coming back. ... and the flood would be a lift exiting on the south side (vs a header exiting north side).
    Jim, you ride that Buffalo well and reading your playbook is great! Thanks for sharing!

    Is the Jib Top configured more for reaching and what's that % compared to the #1.

    Also, can you elaborate on the lifting exit flood at the south more. I don't quite follow.

    Is that what Expedition can do. Provide latitude points to aim for based upon forecasted grids and best (least) sail time.

    JB

  8. #58
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
    Location
    Arnold, CA
    Posts
    410

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    2017 LongPac Report



    Itís Monday afternoon and I just got home and finished unpacking from the race. Even after writing in my log, it is all a bit of a blur but writing helps.

    This was my first LongPac and a lot of other firsts along with it. Hopefully it will all fill in.

    I camped out in SF the night before, arriving after the fireworks, and managing to get a good rest. Exciter and nervous I stowed the outboard below and mounted the e-rudder cassette. 09:30 I pushed off and sailed out for my 10:00 start. Checked in with the race committee and crossed the line on port in good order carrying main and #3 jib. Headed for the north tower to work my way out from that side but tacked early to avoid an inbound freighter. South side it is. Other boats opted for more sail and it was paying off. After getting past the lightship I changed up to my 125% which is my #1 and carried it until just before dark. I did manage to get my first nap down below on the port bunk. Things are definitely LOUDER below, with the hull slamming over the waves the reverberations were astonishing. It would rouse me regularly so I could pop my head out for a look around and check AIS.

    Seasickness wasnít too bad but had me pretty lethargic. My first check in Wed. night, trying to text on the Delorme was pretty brutal though. Barely got a very short text off to R/C and home. Maintaining a regime of Dramamine helps.

    Changed down to the #3 jib and put a few more layers on as night came and it got cooler. The moon made things beautiful. First night proceeded as the day with regular naps and and lookouts, keeping an eye on AIS. After the moon went down I saw the phosphorecence in the bow wave, absolutely amazing!

    Thursday morning brought a new set of issues, the solar system wasnít charging. After checking in I tried resetting the charge controller through the app in my phone, but trying to focus on that really brought on the seasickness. After a rest I decided I needed to get into the wiring. We hove to for some relief from the swell and dug out the tools and multimeter. After some periods of rest, work, purge, the problem was solved. Aimed west again I went below, dosed up on dramamine and took a nap. Evening check in completed, kept getting a little more food and fluids in me.

    About 50nm from turn around I heard Kyntanna on the radio. I called to say hello, and started to chat. Got scolded by USCG Station Long Beach. Oops. at 02:56 Friday I made my turn. Woo hoo!!

    Friday things continued to improve as far as seasickness, appetite, and energy level. Communications became easier. Running with the swell helps a lot for me.
    Wind began to increase throughout the day with the first reef in midday and apparent wind passing 18 knots, later I tucked in the second after we were hitting 22 plus.
    Around 19:00 the tillerpilot ram gave up. Something inside, IĎll have to take it apart to see if I can fix it. I have and ST2000 for a backup but it couldnít keep up with the swell and wind waves that were building. With check in I alerted R/C and home I would heave to later for rest. 22:00 I did just that, dozed for a couple hours when a big wave slammed the side and startled me, all was ok so I tried for a little more sleep. Saturday 02:00 I set to getting to the finish, hand steering in that cross sea the last 100 miles.
    I tried the backup pilot a couple times when I just couldnít keep my eyes open but only got a very short nap. As the sun came up it became easier to keep alert. 08:00 check in had me just west of the Farallone Islands with a thick haze keeping them obscured until I was within 2.5 miles. I considered the lee shore for a moment but felt ok passing to the north in the conditions at hand.

    Approaching Point Bonita I was pleased to receive Red Skyís welcome back call on the radio. The wind died and I jibed back and forth to keep apparent wind going, keep us in the flood and between the inbound and outbound shipping traffic, up to the Gate, where the breeze filled in, put us on starboard to the finish. I ran all the way to the breakwater to give R/C a big wave and THANK YOU! Altogether a great race, challenging and exciting!

    Sailed back to Richmond, called my wife on the way, and slept hard. Ate and slept some more. Cleaned and stowed the boat on Sunday. Returned the liferaft and headed home on Monday. Whew!

    Iím sure there is plenty Iíve missed, hopefully this will suffice.

    Oh, I didnít mention the groover, or bucket and chuck it, as Iíve heard it called.
    That was a first under a seaway. Weíll skip the details.

    Greg Ashby
    S/V Nightmare

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    All men dream: but not equally. Those who dream by night in the dusty recesses of their minds, wake in the day to find that it is vanity; but the dreamers of the day are dangerous men, for they act their dream with open eyes, to make it possible.

    T.E. Lawrence

  9. #59
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
    Location
    Arnold, CA
    Posts
    410

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    Here is a shot of Jaqueline after the start, or maybe just before.

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    And Riff Rider as we headed for Miles Rocks

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  10. #60
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    San Francisco
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    65

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    First - thanks for the kind words!

    On the jib top... its a 155% genoa with a high clew (maybe 5 feet off the deck) that trims near as far aft as the spinnaker sheet. Used when the AWA is between 50 and 85 degrees (and at time as deep as 130 degrees when its too windy to fly a chute). Yes the perfect sail for most of the second half of the race. It sort of works like a "last century's" version of a Code zero (though its heavy material so can be flown off the wind in over 30k). See pic of what looks like a great jib top (but is actually a code zero) - https://www.quantumsails.com/Quantum...r.jpg?ext=.jpg that clearly shows how high the clew is - or a picture of the Buffalo's jib top - but because of the angle is not so clear how high up the clew is - http://pressure-drop.us/imagehost/im...0810783649.jpg

    On lifting exit flood...
    When its flooding and the wind is from the NW... when you are exiting the bay...
    On the north side as you get past the Bonita Channel buoy the flood sets you N to S. With the wind from the NW the current is dragging you away from the wind -- so you see a drop in wind speed equal to the Flood which is also reflected as a wind direction header (you cannot sail as high as you could if there was no current). When exiting the south side in a flood, the flood is carrying you S to N - toward the NW breeze - so you see both a wind velocity increase as well as a lift (you can sail higher then if there was no current). Its the mirror effect that has us favoring the north side exit in an ebb in a NW wind. This all gets reversed if its a southerly wind like we see in the spring from time to time. Might take a white board and some vector diagrams to really grock what is happening...

    On Expedition...
    Given good "as you can really sail" polars for your boat (not theoretical polars which are more about boat trim and speed optimization), you can use Expedition to figure out the "shortest time" turning point for the race. Its a bit iterative... moving the turning point up and down the 126-40 longitude line and rerouting to see which turning point is optimum (shortest time). Using Expedition to do this takes a significant investment in time (and money) learning the tool, learning its quirks - plus developing reasonable polars for your boat as sailed singlehanded (I have developed polars for sailing the Buffalo SH, DH, fully crewed, flat water, big waves... taking into account things like I am not flying the chute in 30k SH but am when fully Crewed). Once you get familiar with Expedition... it only takes 10 minutes to rerun the routing analysis using the latest weather forecast (what I did the last 4 nights before the race and then Wednesday morning before heading to the boat).

    Anyone interested in learning more about exiting the bay strategies or routing using Expedition... just reach out. Happy to walk you thru it F2F. The exiting the bay learning curve is short... 10 minutes and you should have it. Using Expedition is not... warning... plan on investing 50+ hours learning and using Expedition before you are no longer dangerous - but not yet an expert (assuming you already have a reasonably good handle on interpreting weather forecasts and patterns).

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