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thump

on board

thump

August 12, 2010- 33* 37 N, 135* 55 W

Ronnie Simpson and his mate Ed McCoy are bringing Ronnie’s ride (Jutson 30) back from Ronnie’s successful Singlehanded Transpac when they had a slight problem…

Here’s a little riddle for all you Anarchists out there: What goes thump thump in the middle of the night when you’re 800 miles from land? If you happened to be on Warrior’s Wish last night, it would be the sound of the keel, in its entirety, falling off of the boat. We reduced sail and frantically looked the boat over, as the horrifying sound had both sent us to the cockpit. Then the boat gybed and we couldn’t get it to tack back. With just a deep-reefed main, we finally got the boat to tack, and then noticed that we have about 30 degrees of lee helm. We sailed the boat extremely conservatively all night long and into the morning. We thought that maybe the bulb had gone, but this morning at first light, I dove off the back to have a look. Starting from the stern, I checked for all the normal appendages. Rudder: check. Sail drive: check. Keel: "Uh, Ed grab me a snorkel mask, maybe i’m blind, but it looks like it’s gone. So I don a snorkel mask and yep, it’s definitely gone. If you’ve never dove on a boat, far out to sea, and realized that your keel was missing, let me tell you, it’s not a good feeling. Buy me a beer (or six) and i’ll tell you all about it.

We are now motor sailing with just a small jib up. Life raft and ditch kit are on the ready and the coast guard is in constant contact with us. The freight ship "Horizon Hawk" is supposedly inbound with more diesel fuel. In the mean time, it’s a very slow, very tense boat ride to California. FYI: sailboats steer like shit with no keel.

August 12, 2010- Middle of nowhere with no keel

The Coast Guard put out a call for diesel fuel which was answered by the commercial vessel "Horizon Hawk", courtesy of Horizon Freight Lines. Mad props guys. Anyways, "Horizon Hawk" dropped a bunch of drums of diesel fuel into the water with little orange markers on them. Like some bad carnival game, Ed and I drove around in our wounded boat, picking all of them up with a boat hook. I had to jump in to retrieve a few. A line from one of the drums got wrapped around the prop, but Ed cut it out. Go Pro footage of the whole ordeal was captured.

Thanks to Horizon Hawk, our newest unofficial sponsor, we now have 50 gallons of diesel and a shitload of motor oil.

Slowly motoring for home, just trying to keep the heavy side down. Oh never mind, that saying doesn’t apply to us any more. Wish us luck.

Ronnie