After a busy day of provisioning and attending to final details, one of which was to replace crew member Paul, due to an unfortunate visa issue with US Customs. Paul was replaced by Brian, who was to be on the return trip bringing String Theory back from Hawaii, and this opportunity was too good for him to pass up. We welcome Brian but are sad to lose Paul who we were really looking forward to sailing with, maybe next time. Cheers Paul.
There was great excitement on the docks and with the crew as we prepared to cast off and head to the start line. We said our final goodbyes and released the lines while waving to our loved ones. Many came out on String Theory’s support boat to watch the start.
The weather was looking good for quick start and it didn’t disappoint. A quick crew meeting to assign start positions and procedures then we worked the boat up to the line. With Don at the helm we positioned along side the line counting down the seconds. But the hope for a quick start soon faded as the wind dropped before the start gun and we sat on the line trying in vain to get across. Eventually our sails filled and we crossed the line and were off.
Once the wind picked up it was a quick passage through Race Rocks and a race down the strait with a speed that would be the envy of any Swiftsure racer. On the way down the strait we had a little excitement as we sailed into a fog bank, which caused us to change to our #2 headsail and then to the #3 headsail very shortly thereafter. After a few rigging adjustments and some other kinks worked out we were on our way at a good clip. We reached the vicinity of Neah Bay around 7:30 PST, and continued on to turn the corner into the Pacific Ocean. A few humpback whale blowspouts were sighted near Tatoosh Island.
Twelve hours in. Rounding Tatoosh. Everyone excited now!
The evening was satisfying sailing with just a few light spots that the drifter and Code 0 sails took us through. Everyone was very satisfied with our first meal – Marie’s delicious homemade chili. Not a bad way to start the voyage! There were no stars but the phosphorescence were very bright, with the wakes off of the stern very mesmerizing. At one point a crew member noticed three lit up “torpedoes” alongside the boat....dolphins! They were playing alongside and underneath the boat and you could see the entire outline of them underneath the water from the luminescence.
Onward south and merging west. Still sailing upwind at the end of the 24 hour mark, but spirits are high as we making good way to Maui!