May 25, 2018
8 Days Until Launch
Another exciting day at the marina today outfitting Anne for her trans-pacific row!
We started at the boat around 8 am. While Brian started stowing Pop-Tarts, KIND bars, and Nutella into the hatches, I helped tow the ladies’ boat (Ripple Effect, a Rannoch 45) out of the water. She was a heavy boat, and my poor little Jeep’s clutch got a little warm on the way out (quite the smell). The Ripple Effect is an all-women four racing in a very fast boat – they include Brits and Americans on board. Once Ripple Effect (both the name of the Team and the boat) were back in the protected area, we all packed up to attend the race’s Navigation Seminar.
The Nav seminar was pretty straight forward: stay north of these buoys, fight to stay headed west, and make a banana-shaped path to the islands. We shared some stories about some of the more “creative” paths teams have trialed in the past, as well as a story about how carrying a large magnet on board can affect your compass. (This story was prompted when I asked, “so, ummmm, what was going on in that boat?”) At the end of the day, this crossing, much like the Atlantic, is pretty basic, and we are very lucky to have a trusted friend, Aaron, look over the final details of the route for us.
Following the meeting, we had only three surprise “uh-ohs!” for the day, a record low:
(1) Our foul-weather gear from Henri Lloyd (the race’s outfitting sponsor) wouldn’t make it to the states before launch date. Luckily, our new friends at Gill were able to help! They offered us a 40% discount and expedited shipping on their top-of-the-line offshore gear: the OS1. It has 4 layers of material, making it both waterproof and breathable – perfect for rowing through a storm (not that there will be any, of course – in case, Sami or Megan actually read these…)!
(2) Our stainless steel bolts were pinching our seat wheels and not allowing them to spin. Brian diagnosed the problem: the tapered heads were pinching the bearings, so we are ordering some pan head bolts that work great!
(3) There’s something that Brian and I discussed last night that we agreed was important, and I need to buy online for the boat…but we cannot remember what it is. Still, we have no clue. This has been scratching at the back of our mind all day.
Also positive: we bought the last bit of our food today, we got our anemometer up and running, and we mounted Anne’s rearview mirror mast with a US ensign and Texas Navy pennant. She is starting to look like Anne again. We also cut some PVC pipe to allow drainage under the liferaft and handle grips for our rudder line.
All-in-all, it was a good day. Tomorrow starts early with an 8 am doctor’s appointment. ‘Til then.