I'm back in Stavanger, Norway
with African Innovation.
The trip from Ijmuiden to Norway took pretty much exactly 2 days (51 hours plus some change). We sailed around 415nm, so the average for the trip was 8,1 knots. An average I was very happy with considering that the wind
was between 11 - 15 knots pretty much the whole trip. The wind
peaked at 21 knots for an hour and we had a low of 4 knots for a few hours as well. It must be empasized that we were sailing with the wind on the nose the whole trip and had it between 30 - 50 apparent the whole trip. The best speed we logged was 14 knots, when the wind gusted to 21, but what I was most happy with was doing 11 knots in 13 knots of wind (something we did sustained for almost 4 hours off the coast of the Netherlands).
Prior to this trip I had only sailed an FP Athena 38 for a week, so I am by all accounts a novice catamaran
sailor (though I've lived on and sailed monohulls for a number of years). Taking that into consideration I think we performed very well.
The pictures Gideon posted are from the trip (I sent them to him right after I made landfall in Norway). The top left one shows us doing 10.2 knots in 12.4 knorts of wind. This was right after we had done 11 in 13, when we realized we should have taken a picture. The top right is where I'm currently in Norway. The bottom left while we're in the middle fo the North Sea (I'm to the right). Bottom left is when we were moving into Stavanger (Byfjorden).
Another thing that impressed me. We stopped the engine
when we hoisted the sail outside IJmuiden and lowered it 51 hours later, when the wind completely died when we passed to Håstein (right outside Stavanger).
In terms of bridgedeck slamming. I measured my boat before we set sail: 66cm at the lowest point. Not incredibly high, but not very low either. Throughout the whole trip we had no problems with slamming or wave slapping. The North Sea is famous for short steep waves and though we did encounter them, we didn't feel them. We enjoyed a nice smooth ride the whole trip. I will have to get used to the movement of a multi-hull, because it is different from a mono-hull. I don't think it's better or worse, but it's definitely different. Not as predicatble as a monohull
, but not as dramatic either.
The big question is always: What broke or what went wrong? Not much. I tore a gennaker
(When we experienced the 4 knots of wind, we changed course to get the wind off our beam so that we could use the gennaker
... naturally the wind picked up after a little while and though we enjoyed sustained winds at 16 for about 15 minutes, it suddenly peaked at 21 and we must have gottan a flap and wham bam ... I had a nice big tear.) Needless to say we switched back to main + genoa
and had no more problems with the sails
for the rest of the trip. Other than that we had no incidents worth mentioning. It was a brilliant sail and all three of us onboard had a great time.