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Old 07-04-2014, 18:34   #721
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Re: Forum Member's Boat and Daughter in Trouble off of Mexico

One thing to remember that I have not seen mentioned is the degree to which everyone sailing offshore for a few days or weeks simply becomes dopey from lack of sleep and constant motion. I couldn't figure out what was wrong with my Dickinson stove for two weeks until landfall, a night's sleep and about 2 minutes of thought. So, fixing a mechanical problem that is easy to resolve from an armchair is not the same as fixing it after intermittent sleep in a seaway.

While I would be surprised if Eric didn't regret leaving what sounds like (still to be verified) a sound vessel a week from now, I also won't second guess his decision made form whatever frame of mind he had at the time to step off his vessel.
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Old 07-04-2014, 18:35   #722
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Re: Forum Member's boat and daughter in trouble off of Mexico

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Originally Posted by Boatguy30 View Post
Sure he's a nice enough guy, but skilled posting does not equal offshore experience and good judgment.
I have to agree with the above, as there are lots of 'armchair captains' on all sorts of forums, not just boating related ones.

While I respect Eric's/ Rebel Heart's formal credentials he's earned, the Sea does not differentiate between 'Credentialled Seamen' and 'Non-Credentialled Seamen'. Once you cast off your lines bound for Sea it's a crap shoot and a guess that you'll make Port on the other side, whether it be across one of the Great Lakes in North America or an Ocean.

Having sailed with lots more skilled Captains than myself since the late 1960's, I can assure folks that even after all these years sailing I still am learning what it means to 'Go to Sea'. Boats being mechanical beasts and the Seas being Beasts of Mother Nature there is no realistic way to predict any voyages outcome, regardless of how much fore-planning one does IMO/E.

I sometimes found Eric's posts on CF to be cocky, but I chalk that up to his being young and ambitious about liveaboard life. Experience at Sea is not written in any book that I have yet to find coincided with the conditions/experiences I encountered afloat. They are merely representations/anedotes of someone else's experiences at one point in time on a vast ocean.

Kudos to him putting his family first and stepping off the boat when he had to make the choice last night and board the USN Vessel and abandon his own. His experince throughout the ordeal will give him more firsthand knowledge to share with his peers and fellow sailors. It did not seem as if his wife was as knowledgeable or passionate about boating in general as Eric is from what I've read in the media accounts.

Hopefully this lesson is heeded by other young parents with children/infants to not attempt something similiar until the children are capable of caring for themselves on a shorthanded vessel.
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Old 07-04-2014, 19:04   #723
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Re: Forum Member's boat and daughter in trouble off of Mexico

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Sure he's a nice enough guy, but skilled posting does not equal offshore experience and good judgment.
Ummm Robin Lee Graham set off solo in questionable 26ft boat with a sextant at 16 in the 60's before forums. How much offshore experience could he have really gained prior.? Even more impressive without all the tools we have these days. They sailed 7 years prior including living on the boat. You gotta go at some point.
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Old 07-04-2014, 19:07   #724
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Re: Forum Member's boat and daughter in trouble off of Mexico

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Ummm Robin Lee Graham set off solo in questionable 26ft boat with a sextant at 16 in the 60's before forums. How much offshore experience could he have really gained prior.? Even more impressive without all the tools we have these days. They sailed 7 years prior including living on the boat. You gotta go at some point.
I get your point but believe that Robin Lee Graham spent a few years sailing around the South Pacific with his parents before he set out on his solo RTW.
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Old 07-04-2014, 19:09   #725
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Re: Forum Member's boat and daughter in trouble off of Mexico

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They sailed 7 years prior including living on the boat. You gotta go at some point.
Right on!

Let the credibility clowns lick the jelly between my toes.
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Old 07-04-2014, 19:12   #726
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Re: Forum Member's boat and daughter in trouble off of Mexico

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I get your point but believe that Robin Lee Graham spent a few years sailing around the South Pacific with his parents before he set out on his solo RTW.
And Mike Plant forgot to check his keel-bolts. wtf
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Old 07-04-2014, 19:20   #727
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Re: Forum Member's boat and daughter in trouble off of Mexico

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Right on!

Let the credibility clowns lick the jelly between my toes.
LMAO.........you have a way with words....lol
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Old 07-04-2014, 19:25   #728
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Re: Forum Member's Boat and Daughter in Trouble off of Mexico

Mike plant was very hands on and most likely saw the keel set.
Sadly our old friend Ronnie Simpson lost his mast off Maui.
A once admonished amateur he now has become a young experienced sailor. Every story has many versions. Does not make the story wrong or right it is just a story.


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Old 07-04-2014, 19:27   #729
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Re: Forum Member's Boat and Daughter in Trouble off of Mexico

Insurance?
Really, check your policies, folks. If anyone has a policy that insures a boat, 900 nm offshore, with only two crew onboard, please raise your hand. If it covers any boat more than 100nm offshore with a crew of less than 3, please cough loudly.

Satdiver, you will find that these days you can't insure a US vessel in US waters with Pantaeus, unless they've changed their terms again recently. They will refer you to their US affiliate/subsidiary, but Pantaeus firewalls US vessels in US waters that way. And again, two crew? Far offshore? What's the phrase, nice if you can get it?

We'd have to hear from Eric, as we all no doubt will in coming weeks. But the odds are, he had no reasonable options for insurance.

Scuttling?
Again, really? It would seem prudent that if a vessel is about to be set loose, unmanned, in an area where it will drift into fishing fleets, leaking and possibly low in the water, and probably unlit because either the power runs out or the water takes the batteries out, that vessel would be considered a hazard to navigation and yes, sadly, scuttling would be the only prudent thing to do.
You don't have to consent, once you leave the boat they'll scuttle it.

Not leaving the boat?
Anyone seen 'Almost Famous' ? Does the phrase "No, really?" come to mind?
Let's see, you and your spouse have just been through hell. Pararescue angels come down in the middle of nowhere, and if you want to save the boat, you've got to explain to your spouse that you're going to spend at least two weeks on a leaky boat with unreliable or no power now?

There's nothing far-fetched or totally unreasonable from what we've been told. Not even remotely. It would seem odd that a leak couldn't be stopped, personally I'd bet on the shaft more than the cooling system but that could be because epoxy does wonders inside a boat, while semi-permanent reliable repairs that have to be made under a moving boat in the open ocean are awfully less attractive to me. But we'll find out.

Used to be a big gray boat always had at least a machinist's mate who would take it as a personal affront it he couldn't fix anything he could reach, but there's no telling what other considerations come into play here and now.

Coupla weeks, if that long, and I'm sure we'll find out. But so far, to call any part of what we've heard unreasonable or improper?

"No, really?"
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Old 07-04-2014, 19:34   #730
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Re: Forum Member's boat and daughter in trouble off of Mexico

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Originally Posted by jtsailjt View Post
I get your point but believe that Robin Lee Graham spent a few years sailing around the South Pacific with his parents before he set out on his solo RTW.
Hence 7 years living on and sailing their boat. And I'm pretty sure Eric also had prior experience before buying Rebel Heart.

If a few years hauling around the SP with your parents is the new prerequisite for sailing around the world solo using celestial navigation, starting in a boat 10 ft smaller and less sea worthy then Rebel Heart then I don't think anyone here has the right to make judgement calls about the experience required to take on such a journey and complete it successfully. Although I think Robin lost a cat on his first leg. Should have jailed him for animal cruelty.
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Old 07-04-2014, 19:42   #731
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Re: Forum Member's boat and daughter in trouble off of Mexico

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Although I think Robin lost a cat on his first leg. Should have jailed him for animal cruelty.
A dog, yes. But a cat??
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Old 07-04-2014, 19:44   #732
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Re: Forum Member's boat and daughter in trouble off of Mexico

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When I did the trip from Galapagos to Marquesas, 3,200 nms, when we were in about the middle of the passage we were really a long way from shore, any shore.

Its about the only time I have got the heeby-geebys being on any boat. I was wondering what just one broken leg, or one major failure would do and how gangrene could set in before landfall. (Tiny spot of landfall!). For the rest of that watch I was holding onto every hand hold for grim death.

Its an f'ing long way into the middle of nowhere.

If the boat was cracking up, or some weird undiagnosable, unrepairable leak etc, or if I couldnt rely on the boat anymore it would be crazy to give up the offer of a nice warm ship.

That run to the marquesas, either from Mexico or Panama/Galapagos is the longest stretch of water normal cruisers do. And when you are in the middle of it the safety of the world is, and feels, a long way away.

That being said, I would do everything I can to get Sea Life home if I thought I could do it.

I agree that an abandoned boat MUST be scuttled!

This is a really good post. It reflects a moment in the middle of no where. Things are different offshore. You just can't tell how anyone will deal with this. Easy things can become difficult. If it starts going to **** can you compartmentalize by priority? Can you balance where you put energy and effort. Can you ignore lower issues. It's even harder if you are managing crew. Thanks for the insight Mark.



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Old 07-04-2014, 19:45   #733
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Re: Forum Member's Boat and Daughter in Trouble off of Mexico

No power ? No EU2000i tucked in a locker. Guess that's just the Bahamas crowd.
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Old 07-04-2014, 19:48   #734
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Re: Forum Member's Boat and Daughter in Trouble off of Mexico

The first sentence in "The Complete Walker", what used to be the bible on distance hiking, says, "The longest journey starts with the first step". The experience we need begins with the first time leaving the dock. You can only accumulate sea time by going to sea. Life involves a lot of luck.
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Old 07-04-2014, 20:02   #735
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Re: Forum Member's Boat and Daughter in Trouble off of Mexico

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The first sentence in "The Complete Walker", what used to be the bible on distance hiking, says, "The longest journey starts with the first step". The experience we need begins with the first time leaving the dock. You can only accumulate sea time by going to sea. Life involves a lot of luck.
Or as Mark Twain said ...“Good judgement is the result of experience and experience the result of bad judgement."
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