Tuesday, December 29, 2009

In Training

My original plan for the 2010 WaterTribe Everglades Challenge (EC) this coming March was to sail it with Paul in the ‘Dawn Patrol’.  Paul and Alan originally build our sailboat for the 2008 EC which they did together. They also did the 2009 North Carolina Challenge this past September in the class 4 sailboat class.

Photo above is Paul and Alan coming into the finish of the 2009 NCC fully reefed.

Though there is a big smile on my face at the tiller in the picture below, I’m not yet skilled as a sailor. In order to do the EC in a safe and comfortable (as much as any adventure race is, comfortable really translates to less stressful) way, I felt that we’d need to spend a lot of time sailing this past year. I needed to not only learn to sail, but to be confident in it, and have a good understanding of navigation under sail. Well unfortunately that didn’t really happen, we had some nice weekends, but it seemed that there was always other things going on throughout the year that kept us from putting the necessary time in.

I have been paddling of course. So it looks like I’ll need another year of sailing lessons before entering the Challenge in Class 4. In the meantime, I’ve started training for the EC in Class 1 kayak, and Paul is going to volunteer to work the EC this year.

Finding time for training and trying to build the new kayak to paddle in the EC is going to be its own Challenge. My basic training plan for the EC is below. I’ve previously finished 6 ECs, I have the mental stamina, but getting the physical conditioning right certainly makes for a more fun and enjoyable event.  And of course I really love the training and all the time on the water.   I’m right on track.

Basic Training Plan:
• Regular 15 mile Fri night paddles Jan and Feb
• Regular Sunday paddles building from 15-35 miles
• Back to back Sat/Sun 20-35 mile paddles twice in Feb with loaded boat
• Weight Training/Core workouts/Yoga for flexibility
• Regular Jogging, Biking, Swimming for cardio workouts
• Weight Watchers for weight control (lose same 20 lbs, again)

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Merry Christmas

Here's wishing you all the joys of the season. 
Have a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Ready Go

Before starting the actual build, the basement needed to be converted back into a workshop. It's organized and we are now ready to start the build.

The first few pictures in the slideshow above show the hull pieces layed out and ready to scarf the lengths (plan to do tonight). Note that the hull (as in many of the B&B Yacht designs) is built using the 'butterfly technique'.

After scarfing the lengths, you have two large pieces, the side chines are stitched, then the hull is folded in half and the bow, stern, and hull bottom is stitched, then it is allowed to open up and you have a complete hull, ready for taping and epoxy.  Adding the bulkheads and the inwales allow it to keep it shape.

I'm hoping we can do this over the weekend after our Christmas holiday.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Christmas Came Early

Last weekend Paul and I visited Santa Claus (Graham Byrnes) at the North Pole (Vandemere). I must have been a really good girl this year, a new B&B Yacht's Grand Diva kayak kit is my big gift. Merry Christmas to me…

We spent the day visiting with Graham at his workshop, while watching his CNC machine cut out the new kit. Graham was wonderful, and very accommodating to the few customizations I wanted, such as different hatches and cockpit sizes.

This is will be the 5th Grand Diva kayak to date (still not even listed on his website). Its 17’ 6” long, 21” wide, and Swede form in symmetry. The Swede form design is characterized with the wider part of the kayak behind the true middle of the kayak. It is often considered to be a faster and more desirable performer.

The picture above was taken from the Rogue Paddler website. See his article on ‘Choosing the Right Kayak’,  where he discusses kayak symmetry.

Why a new kayak?  It'll be a nice addition to my growing fleet.  Much lighter (possibly as much as 20 lbs lighter than my NDK Explorer), and I’ll add a rudder which will make sailing the kayak with my Pacific Action Sail a bit more pleasant.

The plan is to try and finish the kayak in time for the 2010 WaterTribe Everglades Challenge. Hopefully Paul will have enough free time to help me, or it’ll never get finished.

Graham said he wants to see me finish ahead of KiwiBird this year :) and he'll be quite interested in hearing my opinion of the kayak.  Opinionated I am, hopefully this kayak will help with the fast part.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Road Trip

Paul and I are going to Vandemere to visit with Carla and Graham Byrnes of B&B Yacht Designs on Sunday.  Graham is a well known designer of wooden boats, including kayaks, canoes, row boats, tenders and dingys, beach cruisers, tailer sailors, power boats and multihulls.  In fact, I just heard he's working on a 45' catamaran.

Our Core Sound 20 named 'Dawn Patrol' is a B&B sailboat, check out the link, it includes a picture of the 'Dawn Patrol' in action.

We're going up to 'help' Graham cut out a Grand Diva kayak kit, for me.  The Stewarts will be in building mode again, trying to meet another WaterTribe deadline for the 2010 Everglades Challenge.  This kayak, which is a new model and not yet featured on their website, will be light and fast, 18' long and 21" wide.  Her little sister the "Diva" is described here.    I plan to outfit her with a rudder and my Pacific Action Sail

Paul says it'll be 2011. I've not got a good track record when it comes to finishing kayaks, and he's pretty busy these days.  I'm still needing some coats of paint on that skin-on-frame in the basement, which I've promised to finish before starting another.   But Paul has made WaterTribe deadlines before when building the 'Dawn Patrol'.  Either way, you'll likely be seeing more on my blog about the building process.

Good thing we've got some holiday time off in a couple weeks :)

Friday, December 04, 2009

On the Shoreline

Taken from the website http://www.boston.com/, The Big Picture -  News Stories in Photographs.

 On The Shoreline
"We humans are drawn to the shore, with some 40% of the world's population living within 100 kilometers of a coast. Coastal areas have made recent news with the arrival of several storms, concerns about rising sea levels and other environmental and conservation efforts. Collected here are a handful of photographs from around the world of people and animals at the shoreline, playing, working, struggling or relaxing on the border between land and sea. (36 photos total)"
The photos are absolutely beautiful, check it out here.

Tuesday, December 01, 2009

Georgia Trip

My Georgia trip report will unfortunately have to wait on some photos, my camera had a problem and other’s have promised to share their pictures soon.  

The EYE sailboat with my son Alan on it did indeed pass me off Sapelo Island, and even though they were quite a bit more offshore, I was able to see their sails, and got a few text messages from Alan during that time.

I hope to plan many more trips to Georgia, both kayaking and sailing. It’s a beautiful coast, and a very different ecology than my NC coast.  To help me plan, I’ve purchased the book (above) The Georgia Coast, Waterways and Islands by Nancy Schwalbe Zydler and Tom Zydler.

In the meantime, I'm paddling again locally, and starting my training for the 2010 WaterTribe Everglades Challenge.