Saturday, November 24, 2012

Short Video

We have posted a short video of our arrival in St. Thomas - we have a longer video but the bandwidth won't let us get it through, sorry! Here is the link to it, or you can click on the "video" link above.

Thursday, November 22, 2012

The Virgin Islands

We've had a great week visiting the US and British Virgin Islands with our friends Shawn and Meg, but alas, the internet has been hard to find.  After turning the boat around and cleaning it up after our big trip, we set sail the next day and visited St. Thomas and St. John for some pretty cool snorkeling.  We also hiked to the ruins of an abandoned sugar plantation from the 19th century.

Over the weekend, we crossed to the British Virgin Islands and visited the tiny island of Jost Van Dyke, and the remote coral atoll of Anegada.  On Anegada, we rented mopeds for the day and were able to access some isolated snorkeling spots which was great.

Today, we anchored 100 yards off a great surf break on the west end of Anegada, which we had to ourselves for the whole morning.  Right now, we are anchored in Virgin Gorda, at the Bitter End Club, to celebrate Thanksgiving with turkey and fixings - a nice surprise since we thought we would be eating canned chicken tonight!

All is well on the Navigator front and we are enjoying the islands.  As internet allows we will post pictures and video.  Thanks for all the kind words after our big trip!

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Morehead City, NC - St. Thomas, USVI

We arrived in St. Thomas on Thursday, 15 November after a passage of 1428 miles in 13 days, 6 hrs. We averaged 4.5 kts, or 107.7 miles per day.  Our best day was 135 miles and our worst day was 93 miles.

We left before dawn on Friday, 2 November and set sail in lumpy seas to make tracks for the Gulf Stream.  We used the remnants from Sandy to propel us forward at a good clip, but the seas were such that the autopilot wouldn't hold so we handsteered the first night in short watches. We watched the ocean temperature climb 10 degrees as we crossed overnight.

After the Gulf Stream, we wanted to make miles south to avoid a developing low (which eventually brought snow to NJ).  Luckily we made excellent time on a brisk SW wind and were able to get ahead of the trailing cold front.  The HAM radio worked very well to provide weather reports and hopefully some of you were able to use the shiptrak website to watch our daily position updates.

We cruised on a southeasterly heading for 7 days, making miles and settling into a routine.  The nights were chilly but the days were pleasant if still a little lumpy.  We eventually made it to 65W, the longitude of our destination with 600 miles still to cover straight south.  This worked well as we soon encountered the easterly trade winds.

About 2 days from St. Thomas the winds abandoned us and left us frustrated for a day, which resulted in an arrival a day later than originally thought.  We finally arrived around lunch time on the 15th (Thursday) and immediately jumped in the water after anchoring, very happy to have safely arrived.  We picked up our friend Shawn at the airport and started making plans for our next couple weeks of adventuring with Shawn and Meg.  We moored in a marina Friday night to clean the boat, our clothes and ourselves and restock provisions and will be on our way back to the water later today.  When able, we have a great video of the trip down that we'll upload to vimeo, but it might take a few days until we can find enough bandwidth, so stay tuned!

Friday, November 16, 2012


Made it in to St. Thomas safely. Good trip, will post more when bandwidth allows. Thanks!

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Heading Out...

We are departing today or early tomorrow from Morehead City.  It looks like a favorable (but cold) forecast, so we are going to make tracks. We plan to head south for a day or so, then east towards Bermuda, then south again towards the US Virgin Islands.  The circuitous route is to follow favorable winds and avoid large seas. We expect the trip to take about 12-15 days, but we are provisioned for 30 days just in case!  So you won't hear from us for a while, but we'll update the blog as soon as we can upon arrival.

During our trip we are going to try something new - we are going to call in positions on the long-range radio to a plotting website.  It may or may not work, so if you check it out and we appear to be heading off the edge of the earth or not moving, that doesn't mean we are in trouble, just that our radio is not propagating well.

This will be the link to our position reports:

Type in Kellee's radio call sign of: KB1YUE and it should show our latest position.  Again we are not sure if it will work but its worth a try!

Thanks to everyone for the kind words and emails as we get ready to start the next phase of our voyage.  The gear is stowed and the brownies are readily accessible, so we are off now!

Morehead City Week 3 and Final

We weathered Sandy just fine - some wind and rain and movies. All is well here.

During our last week in Morehead City, we finished up our maintenance projects and took a tour of the Pacific Seacraft factory in nearby Washington, NC.  This is where our type of boat is built. Navigator herself was built in California in 1986, but the company moved in the past few years, so we had a great time with Thumper as he showed us around the factory.  It is amazing how strong our hull is, especially when you can see one "in progress." This type of boat was built for what we are doing, so we feel lucky to have such a strong platform to voyage on.

We also loaded up on groceries, water, and emergency fuel to get us to our next destination. Luckily we had rented a car - that many groceries on a bike would be a problem.

The two of us at the factory.