Sailing Vessel VALIS, Daily Report – Aug 22

Greetings from the sailing vessel VALIS, en-route from Hanalei Bay, Kauai, to San Francisco. We are on the second day of our run, and are now about 150 nautical miles north of Kauai. As of 9:00 PM PDT, our position is lat 24deg 48min N, lon 159deg 26min W.

We spent the few days before our departure doing some minor repairs, inspecting the boat from top to bottom (literally), and getting our provisions for the trip. In San Francisco, we had stocked enough staples for the round trip, so in Kauai we mostly had to purchase perishables. We also topped off the boat’s diesel tanks and purchased four 6-gallon “Jerry” cans which we filled with diesel and lashed to the shrouds.

Thursday, Aug 21 was the day of our departure. It seemed that we would never actually weigh anchor, as we all seemed to be able to find one more thing to do — phone calls, laundry, etc. Finally, one of the cockpit cushions blew into the water, and since we had already deflated and stowed the dinghy, we had to make a move. Daniel put on fins and began to swim after it, but since it was about 300 yards downwind we decided to raise the anchor and motor after both Daniel and the cushion. When they were recovered, we decided to keep on going. Next stop, San Francisco! Time of departure: 1:20 PM Hawaii time. The VALIS is now running on Pacific Daylight (California) time.

Leaving Hanalei Bay, we pointed the boat due north. Winds were strong; about 20 kts from the north east, and swells were about 6-8 ft. We hoisted the stays’l, and a reefed main. This gave us a comfortable ride for the first night, although not as fast as it could have been. We had turkey sandwiches for dinner, and began our three-hour watches, with Daniel on from 10:00 PM (or 7:00 PM Hawaii time), Jim on at 1:00 AM, Paul Elliott on at 4:00 AM, and Paul Grossman taking the 7:00 AM watch. During the night, a large bird (probably a booby, but possibly a shearwater) landed on our bimini, then moved to the starboard lifeline. Our guest kept us company until daybreak, when he woke up, stretched, and flew away.

We have started participating in the “Pacific Seafarer’s Net”, an amateur radio net that provides communications for cruisers. The net runs daily, starting at 8:25 PM PDT, on a frequency of 14.313 MHz, Upper Sideband. Our callsign is WB6CXC. There are several other boats ahead of us on the Hawaii – Mainland run, and we are listening to their weather reports to see what we have in front of us.

The morning of Aug 22, we decided to unfurl the jib to the reef point — this increased our speed from 5 kts to over 7 kts, with bursts up to 9 kts. The seas and winds have been fairly constant, with the occasional rain squall to wash off the salt water. The ride is a bit bumpy after our stay in Hanalei Bay, but we are all getting used to life at sea again. Today we did a lot of sleeping. We are starting to eat the fruit we brought on board — fruit lasts much longer in the cooler climate of northern California.

Best Wishes,
Paul E, Paul G, Daniel, and Jim

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