Day 74 Bumpy ride 14/11/13

Nov 14 2013 close in

Position: 44.45 S, 152.26 E

All is well. Very bumpy ride. Lots of water on the deck. Cold fingers make it hard to type.

The wind had increased 10 knots more than I thought and the sea was increasing. The cloud cover was low and everything under it was grey. The waves were 2-3 meters and breaking across the horizon as well as over West Wind as she pushed hard into them. We were over canvassed so I rolled in the stay sail til all that was left was a small handkerchief. Our speed was close to six knots so I eased the main sheet off which steadied her out. 

 Occasionally West Wind met the big swells hard and the white water flew from bow to stern. I watched for a while til I got cold then went below, removed my rain gear and made myself some tea with honey and a splash of scotch just to take the chill out of my bones. As I braced myself against the stove from the lively motion, with hot mug of tea warming my hands, I glanced out the hatch and found the plastic wind vane that is part of the driving gear for the steering equipment had snapped off and lay bent over by the gale force winds. I quickly got my wet inside and out rain gear on and got ready to change the broken vane for one of the many spares I have on board. Getting the spare out of the larzarette hatch was difficult because of the motion and the breaking water over the boat. I was on my hands and knees trying to hold on to the plastic vane with one hand and hold on with the other as well as close the hatch. Standing up hanging over the transom removing the bolt from the broken vane and trying not to drop it required some dexterity and concentration. Once I removed it, I had to install the new vane and try hard to keep it from the clutches of the gale force wind that tried very hard to snatch it from my numb hands. This successfully complete I returned below.       

I was on deck three more times in the next two hours each time putting on and removing a set of rain gear that got wetter with each foray on to the wind and water swept deck. I am tired and cold but I will make it through this day as I have many others, and the sun will shine again.      

Course 290 Speed 5.5 knotsWind s 30-35 knots Waves S 2-3 metres Cloud 100% Temo 9 C Baro 1012 Miles in last 24 hrs: 90 nm



  1. John Nicholson says

    Hi Glen,
    Have been following your progress since you left Cadboro Bay. Saw West Wind while at anchor there. She sure looked fine from a distance and from your progress, it sounds like she sails as well as she looks.. And from your Day 74 post, it sounds like she was holding course even without the Fleming. Have I got that right?
    All the best. A lot of people are rooting for you.
    John Nicholson

  2. Linda Perry says

    I’m Bill Smith’s sister in Guelph Ont.and following you daily through my brother.Your’re amazing!!!!!!!

  3. Pat and Fred Lark says


    Everything is going to be all right. A splash of scotch can solve just about anything. Wishing you warmth and sun.

    pat and fred

  4. Douglas Adkins says

    Glenn, It sounds a bit rugged out there in the Tasman Sea. Please take good care…one hand for yourself and all of that! The posts are great and the CCA PNW station is following you with interest and admiration. Cheers, Doug Adkins

  5. Glenn, you are one tough guy. The next time I get stabbed by a thorn while gardening or lose something on the computer, I’ll stop whining and think of what you’re coping with. Well, I probably won’t stop whining but at least it will be in perspective! Thanks for keeping up the posts, despite everything. I look forward to them every day.

  6. martin dawes says

    unbelievable to fiddle with a wind vane in those winds and waves – i just go down to the marina check the boat is moored securely. Very impressive – good luck

  7. Hi Glenn, that sounds like a day where your careful determination was very present. Keep it up. Best, Jim

  8. Hang in there Glenn. What a ride!

  9. Steve Illman says

    HI Glenn, I know on days like these, when you are cold and tired, it must be hard to get these posts composed. Thank so much, we really look forward everyday to seeing your emails. We are with you, just a lot warmer and dryer!
    Happy sailing
    Steve and family
    Victoria B.C

  10. Tough go today! The scotch was a good idea, cheers and keep it up sir!

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