A change in plans

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 Day 8 December 4, 2016

Its 12:15 am and I’m still up partly because sleep is illusive. We have light following breezes and WW II needs some attention in order to keep on track. I gybed the main at sunset and altered course to a little more north. The seas are still running pretty big and shaking the wind out of the sails. We are struggling hard to hang on to 4 knots of boat speed. I have made some hot chocolate and have been feasting on cookies. I’ve also been carving my chain from wood which I seem to be really getting into. I have a pile of wood shavings around my nav station seat. It is cool outside and very very dark with a light mist in the air. I’m starting to fade so I will lie down and see how things go for the rest of the night.

later that morning …

Very cool here this morning, and the sky is still pinking up from a blush of cloud filtering the early low sunlight. There is a large high semi circle of white cloud moving in from the west and above that, very high in the sky, is a whispy feather like formation in a straight line also coming from the west. There are no petrels or albatross gliding gracefully over the legions of white capped waves coming up our stern as yet. The kettle is on Princess’s front burner swinging away to the incessant motion of the sea. I’m tired this morning after a late night trying to persuade WW II to run directly in front of the wind. I was also completely engaged in carving my wooden chain. Nothing like doing something with your hands to while away the hours. One of the consequences of the effort it takes to hold the chisel firmly and guide it precisely and delicately through the wood is that the effort has awakened my healing ribs and made me realize they aren’t quite All things in moderation.

Tea’s made and I put some New Zealand Manuka honey in to sweeten me up a bit. Just noticed a petrel gliding by. so we’re not alone.

People have been asking about my route and sailing details.  To explain … In April 2007, I left Kim Chow in the Southern Ocean. Since then I have always had a burning desire to complete my circumnavigation. Bringing WW II back from NZ seemed like the perfect opportunity. I could leave NZ and sail east about 6000 nautical miles, sailing with the wind and current, across the bottom of the Pacific Ocean, around Cape Horn and back up to that fateful spot in the South Atlantic, just a couple of hundred miles North East of the Falkland Islands and complete my circumnavigation. I would then turn around and double back around Cape Horn, this time sailing west about, against the wind and current back into the Pacific and 8000 nautical miles home.

The stark reality of this little voyage is the scale. I would be sailing the same distance as half way around the world, a six month marathon. Not that I haven’t done more than that in the past, but the fact is I’m not confident WW II has it in her and quite frankly I’m not sure I do either. I love being at sea especially in the dynamic seascape of the Southern Ocean. The one subject I give some thought to is risk. My view of risk and other people’s view is quite different, that’s why I’m here on my own. So, to make a long story short I decided yesterday to turn left and come home rather than head for Cape Horn. I can hear the collective sighs of relief from many of you and thanks for caring.

So I have altered course and will head due east and when there is good weather to turn north for home in the coming days I will head north. Because I have some power limitations with one solar panel out of commission, I will sign off for now.


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This map shows wind velocity and direction at the surface of the ocean. It’s located at earth.nullschool.net  The green circle in Glenn

 

Comments

  1. Tough decision, but trust you’ll still relish the rest of your passage – it’s the journey, not the destination. Safe travels..

  2. Leslie Ann says:

    I can only imagine what a decision that was for you to make, Glenn but I know at least three girls who’ll be relieved. And I’m sure many more of us can be added to that list….even RR, guiding you from on high of course! Safe trip home, bro. Regards, Leslie.

  3. Pete Rasmussen says:

    Hey its much warmer on the new course!

  4. Mike byrnes says:

    No shame in making a wise decision. ( my motto… ” we weren’t put here to suffer”). Look forward to a raft up and BBQ. Cheers ?

  5. Kathleen Ward says:

    I’m enjoying your blog immensely and glad you’re heading north instead of south east. Wishing you good winds to get you back home safely. Cheers, Kathleen

  6. James Houston says:

    Good decision Glenn. I know a big part of you will be deeply disappointed. I know you will have weighed all to pros and cons of continuing on. The task ahead was certainly full of risk. The heart has now won out over the brain. We all feel your heart and look forward to seeing you and hearing the stories when you get home.

  7. Terry Costain says:

    Glen, great decision to return home. There is a lot of cruising to do around here and I’m sure you will do it along with your many friends and family. Take care and have a safe trip back. Terry :)

  8. Pat and Fred says:

    Hi Glen,

    Good, good, good. A thoughtful decision. A thoughtful plan.
    Welcome home.

    Pat and Fred

  9. Melissa Anderson says:

    A hard decision, but as you made it thoughtfully, no doubt the right one. Bon voyage Glenn.

  10. KenPfister says:

    I think that is a good decision ` safe journey home!

    Ken.

  11. Neil & Sally Knight says:

    Hi Glenn – that wouldn’t have been a difficult decision for me (Sally), but we realise you’ve done some serious soul-searching there and will be disappointed.

    Safe journey home and we look forward to following the remainder of your journey. Any Christmas Cake left?

  12. stan and dianne says:

    Hi Glen: As a former merchant seaman I have seen my share of bad weather and harsh conditions, but the smallest ship I sailed in was over a hundred tons and there were always cooks in the galley and at least two men on the bridge, so I applaud your achievement and look forward to seeing you and swapping yarns on your return. Stan (and Dianne)

  13. Jenny Wright says:

    Hi Gleen and Marylou,

    Must say we were 2 of those people that gave a big sigh of relief. Must have been a very tough decision for you to make though.
    Hope to catch you on the airwaves soon.

    Ted and Jenny
    vk6nte

  14. Ann & Steve Merriman says:

    Tough decision Glenn but think it is a wise one.
    You are in our thoughts – Ann & Steve

  15. Michael King-Brown says:

    Helllo Glenn and Marylou, I have been following your blog religiously, all the while wondering what you were up to. I came to the same conclusion, that you were headed back to complete your circumnavigation. I didn’t do the math, tho, I now see what a long way that would be. I know how hard it must have been for you to make that decision, and as a vicarious shipmate, I can’t say I’m sorry not to be rounding the Horn twice! Godspeed, my friend, You and Marylou are in my thoughts everyday, I wish you safe passage, and I look forward to the next time we eventually see each other! Love, Michael

  16. Barry Mitchell says:

    Well, I can’t say I didn’t sigh my friend. I also know it would have taken a lot of serious consideration on your part to come to that decision. None the less, a wise one in my book.

  17. As courageous a decision, Glenn, as you’ve made setting out each time. Bring that wooden chain on home (and all fingertips).

    Streaming warm thoughts your way.

  18. Hubert Havelaar says:

    Congratulations,Glen on what I feel is a prudent,sensible change of plan……I understand the challenge of “completing” a circumnavigation,but a decision to double the Horn twice,compared to heading directly for what is arguably the most magnificent cruising area on the globe (the B.C. coast) is in my mind no contest! Last spring (March and April) I voyaged on the Dutch square rigged bark Europa across the South Atlantic from Chile to Capetown via Antarctica,South Georgia and Tristan da Cunha…….we saw gusts to force 12, and sea state to match…..I’m well aware of conditions in those southern latitudes.We look forward to seeing you sail into Gorge Harbour,Cortes Island in the future,where a libation awaits you! Cheers,Hubert

  19. Jan Olsen says:

    Prudent decision young man.

    Glad to hear of this decision Glenn.

    Will look forward to welcoming you in Juan DE Fuca.

  20. A tough decision we know, but we agree that it seems a good one. The essential thing is for you to rejoin your family and friends in good shape.

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