Friday, May 26, 2017

"Begone" is For Sale and is ready to go sailing! Maybe you're her new owner?

We have had wonder adventures aboard Begone, we are excited to say she has found her new caretakers! Thank you to all who inquired and you'll be glad to know she is going to great people and on her next Begone Adventure!

Saturday, August 22, 2015

We made it to SF !!!

We made it back home to San Francisco Bay Area!!!
The Pacific Northwest and the coastal trip between Port Townsend and the San Francisco Bay was absolutely memorable including the trip down the coast.
Visiting Port Townsend and the San Juan islands. Road trip to Whistler, Vancouver, and Victoria on Vancouver Island.
Our passage home started as a graceful (yet became foggy) motoring trip with avoiding fishing boats until just above Mendocino when we were handed a wildly exciting, windy 12 hours with 15' seas that finished with a visually spectacular trip into the Golden Gate.
Begone did a great job of handling it all and we all could not have been happier with the trip and having the opportunity to sail with each other!
Best, Suzanne, Tom, Vicky
s/v Begone

Monday, August 10, 2015

Our Passage from Hawaii to Port Townsend

Tom described our passage back to the Pacific Northwest as "a little of everything".  75 hours of motoring due to no wind (that's a lot), A day of 25-35 knots of wind and big seas.  And some perfect sailing weather, too.  These are the entries we posted (with pictures added) on the Farkwar website while we were underway.

There are 6 entries for you to follow our 23 day / 2300 mile passage from Hanalei Bay, Kauai to Port Townsend, Washington.

Day 4  -Begone's Update - Saturday, June 27, 2015
We're in Day 4 of our 2300 mile sail back to the mainland after leaving Hanalei Bay, Kauai Wednesday 6/24/15 at 1:00 PM local time.  The ENE trade wind was well established and we were able to sail out on a nice close reach (013 degrees) on 15-20 knots of breeze.  Just perfect - well for about 5 hours.

Then the wind and seas picked up and sent us into our first night at sea on an E-Ticket ride.  Wind around 25-30 kts still from ENE, 8 ft. seas that broke over the deck with a vengeance.  Not much rest for any of us.  Begone didn't much care about all that, she just sped along at 6-7 knots.  We found a few leaks -- but nothing too annoying and they apparently only show up with she's under "pressure washer" forces.

The wind settled back down and we have enjoyed 5-6 knots of boat speed until last night when we had to revert to motorsailing on an off to keep our boat speed around 4 knots.  We're trying to get to the Low pressure system that will catapult us up and over the Pacific High.
We'll see if it works!

On Thursday afternoon, we were contacted on VHF Radio by the US Coast Guard and the Navy who were clearing the area for maneuvers.  Wait till you see the pictures of the Coast Guard's C130 airplane on a fly-by at mast level !!

We are buddy boating with David Boyer and his crew Mike aboard the Crealock 37 "Papallion II”.  We met Dave in Hilo and have enjoyed his Canadian company in Honolulu and Hanalei Bay.  We are well matched boats (except he has more fuel so motors faster and we're lighter and sail faster).  We talk via SSB in the morning about weather and evening just to check in.

All's good.  Only 1,925 miles to the Pacific Northwest!
Day 7
July 1, 2015 - Happy Canada Day!
We're sailing along at about 6 knots on a broad reach on a bunch of wind that has rarely gotten below 20 knots with just a double reefed mainsail.  Our course if 50 degrees True and we're heading straight for Queen Charlotte Sound...only problem is this big High Pressure system between us and there ... we'll have to decide what to do about going over it or through it in 4 or 5 days. Hoping for it will move south or that there will be a "parting of the Red Sea".  This 20 knot wind started yesterday afternoon just as the GRIB weather files indicated and looks like the overcast skies, rain and breeze will be with us for awhile.  But isn't that we should expect in the Pacific Northwest?  And we're glad it's taking us where we'd like to be going!

Minestrone Soup was last nights dinner.  Ginger Beef Stir fry for tonight! 

The boats doing great, we're doing great. 1500 miles to go to land fall! 
Again, Happy Canada Day!
Day 10 - Happy 4th of July!
July 4th, 2015 -- Happy Independence Day!

Only 1190 miles left in our trip to the Pacific Northwest.  We're enjoying 15 knots of breeze from the South/SE, calm seas, 6 knots of boat speed on a starboard broad reach.  The skies have gotten sunny, there's a bit moisture in the air - which is very good for keeping a lovely completion, but not as good for drying laundry.  

We'll hit our half way point sometime tomorrow (it would have been yesterday or today but we have to sail over top the Pacific High weather "hole" (no wind in the middle).  It's been much further North and stationary than in my past 2 trips across -- and it just doesn't want to split up or move south.  But the 5 day forecasts are showing it changing - so wish us some nice wind to fill in on the north side! 

We're doing lots of reading and eating well and catching up on each others life stories -- often prompted by the books we're reading. Right now, I'm reading "Unbroken".  And just finished "Stones from the River".  Both are about people facing WWII -- the first was fighting in the Pacific Ocean.  The second a story of a young German girl - a dwarf - and her struggles/life as she deals with her differences and WWII in her small German town.   Tom's reading "Sex Lives of Cannibals".  And Vicky "The Cellist of Sarajevo".  And we've all enjoyed "The Boys in the Boat".

And we're eating very well -- much of our fresh veggies are coming to an end but we have plenty of other good stuff. Tonight will be Fillet of Beef with Lumpy Mash Potatoes in honor of 4th of July.  After reading about Japan and Germany for the past while, I'm sure glad to have been born and live in the USA.

Sure hope you all will have a great day today celebrating Independence Day.
Day 14 - only 900 miles to the mainland
Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Greetings all,
We're just enjoying a nice day as a motor boat gracing through what is left of the middle of a Pacific High on calm seas with not much wind.  Looks like we'll have a couple days with the noise maker substituting for the wind before the breeze from the north Low starts filling in.  At night, the moon leaves a long path of light on the still water.  Quite beautiful.

We talk to a freighter or two each night thanks to the AIS warning system that notifies us that another AIS equipped vessel is within 10 miles.  We can see the name of the ship, their speed and bearing to us. 
We call them by ship name on Channel 16 since we have no AIS transmitter for them to see little us (we don't show on their radar unless they're looking for us). 
Interestingly, Vicky and Suzanne receive a quick response for the English speaking officer on board.  "Are you the Officer?  Are you a girl?"  And then they ask to go to channel 06 to learn about us and where we're going and how big is our "ship".  And then they chart our location on their radar and promise to steer clear of us!

We've been thrilled with Begone's ability to sail in light winds.  Last night I watched the 3 knots of breeze "pipe up" to 6 knots.  Trimmed the sails and on a beam reach she was making 4 knots. Sailed for over an hour the first time and almost 2 hours a little later on.  We have a little less than 300 hours of fuel aboard so it great to be able to stretch it. 

Route update:  We decided to sail into Port Townsend through the Straits of Juan de Fuca instead of the scenic (and now we understand smoky) northern route through Queen Charlotte Sound.  We'll save northern BC for when we feel we have more time and the right clothes for the Pacific Northwest wilderness (Hawaiian shirts - in Port Hardy???) 

Course: 055 True
Speed:  4.5 km/hr. motoring
Distance to Landfall:  900 miles
Tonight's menu is Veggie, Salami and SPAM (for Tom) Pizzas (thanks to Betsy for the Boat friendly bread/pizza dough recipe) we're celebrating our halfway mark with a party for the 3rd night in a row!
Day 21
Tuesday, July 14, 2015

"I'm sailing. I'm a sailor. I sail." (Bill Murray in "What about Bob?")

After 75 hours and almost 700 miles of motoring we're finally sailing again!  The typical weather patterns for this passage just didn't form so for the past 3 days there was only 0-4 knots of wind anywhere within 150 miles of us.  We're grateful for Tom's fuel management strategy and Begone's Yanmar ability to sip fuel when motoring in flat calm seas at 1400 RPMs.  We made 4 knots at 1400 RPMs (so much nicer than drifting!!!) -- and then this afternoon on Vicky's watch, the breeze filled to 7 knots and we're now sailing at 5.5 knots straight to the Straits of Juan de Fuca.

Caught a 30 lb. Charlie Albacore Tuna!!! Tom set out the line, Vicky dragged it in, Suzanne took the pics!  It was delicious sashimi, seared, baked!!!

On this leg -- it's 2100 miles completed -- 177 miles to go to the entrance of the Straits. 
Then another ~80 miles to Port Townsend.  Yippee Skippee.  Looking forward to seeing friends, touring and cruising to the San Juan Islands -- AFTER we get showers, laundry done, and clean & polish Begone inside and out! 
Day 22 & 23 - Begone made it to Port Townsend, WA
Friday morning, July 17, 2015

It's now almost noon and we've checked into the Point Hudson Marina, Port Townsend - had coffee, breakfast, showers and mounded a huge pile of laundry.

Our last couple days of the sail to Washington included mild broad reach sailing, pea soup fog, motoring, and a threat of gale force winds and they joys of dodging freighters, cruise ships, fishing trawlers and tug boats in the Strait of Juan de Fuca.  We were grateful for the AIS and radar and "seeing eye bitchie's" eagle eyes. 

We saw land early Thursday morning after 22 days at sea.  We pulled into Neah Bay for fuel just before noon.  Then headed straight onto Port Townsend for an overnight sail.  Arrived in at 7:00 AM and after we checked in, Vicky overheard the office tell someone there were no more slips...lucky us!

We're looking forward keeping Begone here for a couple weeks here in Port Townsend, then a road trip up to Whistler with our friend, Don Morton, a visit to Victoria and Seattle, and sailing up to Lopez Island and Lummi Island to visit friends.

Gee, it's great to be here safe, sound and still enjoying each other!  More adventures to follow.


Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Heaven, Earth and Sea - Favorite Hawai'ian Island Scenes

June 24, 2015 -
We enjoyed over 6 weeks here on the Hawai'ian Islands.  We certainly could have spent more time, but it was a great time...Here are a few of our favorite scenes:

The Big Island of Hawaii

Lava Flows

Vicky was always on the lookout for places to
run -- and Tom and I were happy to figure
ways to either get her there or schedule time
for some epic adventures on the trails.

 And life on the boat in Radio Bay!


A day at the Pearl Harbor Memorial -- Tom's Dad had been stationed here after the attack in 1941.
The view from our cockpit in Honolulu!


Begone Goes Hawai'ian Style - Part 3 - Kauai

Tuesday, June 16, 2015 we arrived Hanalei Bay, Kauai. It's a protected Bay on the north shore that most mainland-bound sailors stop in for their
last stop for provisions and preparation.  It's also a place we enjoyed friends and amazing scenery.  Kauai is called the Garden Island and is probably the most laid back of the Island Chain.  Hanalei is kinda set up for visitors -- especially those driving out the hike or take a boat tour to the Na'pali Coast.

Vicky was quick to scope out the hiking/running trails and we all were looking forward to catching up with new and old friends.

The first gathering with our friend, Tim Sell formerly of Sausalito - now a resident to Kauai.  Given his talents as a diver, we asked him to prep Begone for the passage, share dinner with us, show us around the island AND entertain us with the canoe race in the Bay!

And a great dinner aboard with John & Simone (Popoki), Liz & Tim Sell (Lucky Star) 
and us on Begone.

Vicky found one of the greatest running/trails in the USA -- Kalalau Trail on the Na'Pali Coast.  Amazingly beautiful and challenging (even for Vicky)!

We were looking forward to visiting with Master Mariners/Sausalito friends Mary Smith and
Diane & Jerry Brenden.  What a great time we had with them.  The Brenden's have lived here for 20 years and Mary about 12. Seeing this island of 80,000 residents through their eyes was magical.

Dave, Vicky, Diane, Tom and Mary (and Suzanne) for a lunch at the Brenden's beautiful home.
A tour of the hills and river above Ka'paa (now my favorite town on Kauai). 

And then the Brenden's hosted a beach party for all us cruisers in the Bay.  The Bar-B-Q beach party was just terrific and a great reason for all of us that have sailed up the islands together to get together again  for some fun in the sun!

Little sail anyone?  We helped Diane launch the little hobbie cat for a little sail around the Bay!

Hawaii is known for rainbows, this was taken of our friends steel boat, Caledonia, just after a squall has passed.

Wednesday, June 24th - Begone, anchored in Hanalei Bay, Kauai -- ready for her sail back to the mainland.

We've traveled 3800 miles, so far.  And are about to take off back across the Pacific.  

Fair Winds, Following Seas and Happy Trails to us all!
Suzanne, Tom, and Vicky - s/v Begone

Begone Goes Hawai'ian Style - Part II

Part II takes us from Hawai'i to Oahu via Maui.
Leaving the Big Island was difficult -- we really enjoyed the diversity of the land, the people and things to do.  But deciding WHEN to leave was a rather easy decision,  To make our way up to Maui, we just needed a 24 hour sail across the DREADED Alenuihana Channel.  This crossing is positively legendary for intense winds and high seas and for breaking boats.  But of all the luck, the days we chose to cross, we had flat seas and very light wind.  It was a gift!
Another beautiful Sunrise in paradise

Maui -- for 3 nights, 2 anchorages, some friends and an E Ticket Dinghy Dock...
The rarely visited south shore of Maui

Our first night on Maui we chose to anchor at Oneuli "White Sand" Beach.  There hill provided protection from the NW 20 knots of breeze.  Surfers were enjoying some good breaking waves so we chose to watch the beach goers from the boat rather than swamp our dinghy trying to go ashore. 

We got up the next morning and headed for Lahiana hoping to meet up with our friends from Crockett, CA -- Louise and Rob McClendon who were visiting Maui.  The nice 20 knots of breeze on the beam faded to calm just as we noticed a boat we had met in Radio Bay -- and we had the jacket he left at the party.  It was an impressive and successful hand-off at sea with Vicky on boat pole, Tom at the helm and Suzanne at the camera!  

We continued North to Lahiana -- and the wind proceeded to build to 30 knots.  Our friends on "Popoki" were anchored in good holding ground in the Mala Wharf beach - 1 mile north of Lahiana.  So we chose to anchor rather than trying to pick up a mooring ball at the Yacht Club.  It was a gusty anchorage, but we were confident that Begone was well stuck (Thank you John and Dorothy for choosing a big 45 lb. anchor!)

The next morning, the NE 20+ knots of wind continued, but we wanted to meet Rob & Louise on shore -- so we launched the dinghy and headed to what is generally a calm launch ramp/dinghy dock.  BUT NOT TODAY.  You may be able to see the waves breaking in the entrance -- it was an 
E-Ticket ride and tie-up.

It was great to catch up with Rob & Louise and enjoy lunch on the waterfront.  It was too snotty to bring them out to Begone so we said our "good-byes - see ya in Crockett" and headed back to the rock and rolling at the anchorage,  We decided that spending more time on Maui would have to be another trip.  The wind was blowing and Oahu was calling us.  The next morning we weighed anchor and headed for Honolulu.

Three Week on Oahu -- Begone is side-tied to the Aloha Deck of the Hawaii Yacht Club (Waikiki/Honolulu).   

This was taken from a plane ride (more late) -- Begone is right in the middle of the picture.

We were warmly welcomed at the Hawaii Yacht Club.

 And enjoyed the canoe'ers and SUP'ers and rowers go by us everyday.

We had met John Tebbetts (Ichi Ban) in San Carlos in 2013 and have enjoyed (hated) getting together with him ever since.  We wanted to get to Honolulu before he took off sailing to the South Pacific.  We shared several get togethers (and paid off our Super Bowl pizza bets) before his departure.  Fair winds, John!

SPAM continues to be on our shopping list -- Tom's new favorite is Black Pepper SPAM

Tom had to do a motorcycle trip of the island -- so chose a Triumph for his wheels this time. 

Our favorite boat neighbor - "Redford" and his owner Steve is AOK, too.

Before we left Honolulu, we invited a few friends over for appetizers and beverages.  Begone managed to accommodate 13 people and Redford!  Turns out that's just enough weight in the cockpit to allow 2 inches of water in through the cockpit drain!

We decided to add AIS to our navigation/safety gear...Tom engineered a beautiful mount. 

Things we did during our weeks on Oahu:

Vicky had met Merle and Mary (Tirnanog) when she and Chuck were sailing in the South Pacific.  Merle is now the caretaker and chief pilot for Hawaiian Airlines 1st commercial plane - a 1929 Bellanca.  What an amazing ride we had!

Pilot to Co-Pilot -- NOT!  Merle and Tom had the cockpit covered!

And then there's Vicky's Epic Run on the "Stairway to Heaven" Trail...a 5 hour run with a major elevation demand.  Was this from a plane or on foot?  ON FOOT!  Amazing - so she did it twice in 24 hours!

And then there were parties on Begone -- one night we had a party with 13 people aboard and a good time was shared by all -- despite the stern was so low that 2 inches of water came up through the cockpit drain!  

It was a fun and eventful 3 weeks on Oahu.  But it was time to leave for Kauai on Monday, June 15th.  We were looking forward to our trip to Hanalei Bay, Kauai.  So off we went!
But had a Mai Tai with our friends at the Royal Hawaiian Mai Tai bar on the beach as our send off!

Chapter 3 -- Kauai