Thursday, July 11, 2019

Transpac 2019

Aloha Westward Fans!

It's time for the 50th running of the Transpac and there are 90 entries! Even though Westward isn't going, two of her crew are! I (Alli) am aboard J World's Hula Girl and Graham is aboard Mr. Bill. After sailing so many miles together, it'll be different to instead be competitors, but it's still nice to know we'll end up in Hawaii together!

The first group of boats started yesterday and it looks like they made it out to Catalina in great time. Catalina is the only mark of the course--after that the next stop is Diamond Head! Hula Girl starts tomorrow and the weather is looking decent. Hopefully it holds up for Saturday and Mr. Bill as well!

Given the chance, both Graham and I will be blogging. You can also download the YB tracker and find out all kinds of information here:

Today is all about final details and prep--and getting a good night's sleep! Looking forward to hopping aboard and heading offshore tomorrow!


Friday, July 14, 2017


On Resolute, we talk about all kinds of light, but there are three that dominate conversation: direct sunlight, moonlight and light wind. One of those lights makes night sailing way easier. The other two make things hot and slow. For the last 36 hours, we had all three (obviously, sunlight and moonlight at different times). The worst of those lights for us? Light wind.

Up until yesterday morning, as you have probably seen, we were in a comfortable lead in our class and in spitting distance of the overall win. Then, rudely, the wind shifted and died and put us in a position to sail almost the opposite of the way Resolute likes to be sailed. We went slow for a long time.

Now, we're racing for second in our class, which is still pretty darn good. The boats that have already finished owe us time, so we're really just racing the clock at this point.

The wind has picked back up and Resolute is (literally) humming along. The ocean is the bluest blue and the best part is that we have under 60 miles to go. Everyone is a little brighter and cheerier. The downside of all of this is that we've had to close all the hatches and it's getting pretty--uh--tropical down below.

We've got Maui in our sights and are not long until we'll see Molokai as well. Depending on what the wind does, we still have a couple of maneuvers to the finish and then we'll drop the sails and head in to Hawaii Yacht Club. If all goes as planned tonight we'll sleep in real beds and not stacked on top of each other (I'll just leave that to your imagination).

I've just been informed that Brian is whipping up risotto with chicken for our (again, hopefully) final dinner tonight. Sounds pretty good to me!

All is well aboard Resolute (and getting better with each passing mile).


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Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Night sky/day sky

Did you guys know that if the moon is still up and bright around dawn, there is a clear demarcation between what is night sky and what is day sky? I didn't, until last night/this morning. Trevor and I were on watch and the moon was super bright. I looked behind us and dawn was just starting to break and there was a CLEAR line between what sky was still the night and what was the day. It was pretty cool.

Speaking of night, for the first time we really saw some stars last night. And, the day star came out today for the first time since the start. Before night fell yesterday, I was just making the comment that we'd seen a total of about six stars including the sun our whole trip. I wouldn't say we had a LOT of stars last night, but it at least quadrupled our count. The sun has been out most of the day today, so I'm hoping that we'll see the Southern Cross (Traci, counting on you to back me up here) tonight or tomorrow because...

..we're in the final countdown! Right now, we're thinking we probably finish Friday afternoon-ish -- which is SO soon! And that's probably a good thing because things are getting a little loony out here. Or maybe more appropriate to say "terny". This morning after Tim and Matt came up on watch, we heard a loud squawking sound. Turns out, it was Tim shouting at (to?) the terns circling overhead. The bird whisperer.

It's getting hot and stinky down below, but today has been shower day for at least some of us (so far: me and Brian), so that's always a relief. For those of you wondering, showering consists of throwing a bucket with a string overboard off the back of the boat (we're going kinda fast through the water), filling it, dumping it over your head, shampooing and soaping, and doing the bucket thing again to rinse. This far south, the water is warm and it's really a pleasant experience. To the disappointment of all on board, I'm sure, my shower was in a bathing suit rather than my birthday suit.

Everything is going well aboard Resolute, although we could use some more breeze down this final stretch!


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Tuesday, July 11, 2017

I know Brian said we turned left, but...

..we turned back.

Around 11:30 this morning, it seemed like it was time to gybe (turn) and head toward Honolulu with a wind shift we'd gotten. And then, we got another one and gybed back. My right arm has been getting a workout for the past six days trimming, so I WAS happy to get a little left arm work in. Alas, it was not meant to be. I'll just have to keep having right-handed arm wrestling contests.

For anyone who has not been reading the Facebook page, you probably haven't heard about the savage flying fish attack last night. Matt got hit right in the face. The flying fish have been trying to get us for days, but have been missing (although there have been a couple of close calls). We've found a bunch on the deck and thought we had the upper hand, but I guess they're sending in their best pilots now. We'll see what happens throughout the rest of the race.

Good news: Just as I came down here to write this, the distance to our waypoint (the finish) ticked to under 700 miles! That's a real morale booster -- although things get a little trickier from here on out. Brian says we're doing well, so every decision is an important one and every knot of boatspeed counts.

We're romping happily along out here. But, the boat dreams have started to become really weird (maybe Jimmy Buffett should have written a song about boat dreams instead of boat drinks). I'm going to have to sell my car because of my dream that there was a rattlesnake inside that WOULD not leave (mom and dad, if you could handle that before I get home, that would be great) and Tim had a dream that we were waiting for an uber to finish the race. I checked my app and we're a bit out of the service area here.

I'd like to report that everything is still smelling sweetly, but it's not. It's pretty gamey down below on the boat. Almost like there are five guys living in a confined, closed in space in the tropics. But, it's only four guys...and me...and let me tell you, I'm definitely part of the problem.

Congrats to the boys on Mighty Merloe. Artie, I guess this means you're up 2 to 1 now.


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Sunday, July 9, 2017

Halfway there!

You guys. There is so much that I forgot to tell you in my last post and that has happened in the last day.

First, sailing at night is usually pretty cool, but the last few nights have been WAY cool. It has been so bright outside that we have been able to call puffs (incoming wind) at two in the morning. Usually, it's too dark to do that. The moon is full and behind a thin layer of clouds, so we've been able to see the horizon better than usual, which makes sailing at night easier.

Second, the most awesome thing happened on Friday afternoon. Trevor, Brian and I are on deck when we see a sail in the distance. We'd been sailing for almost 48 hours at that point, so seeing another boat is definitely a topic of conversation. After some speculation, Brian went to check the AIS and saw that it was Comanche. Within the hour, they'd passed us within a mile and disappeared in the horizon in front of us. That was less than 24 hours after their start. They'd already sailed just about 500 miles. As I write this, they're just about to Hawaii--maybe within a day.

Third, and this I think is probably the most important, we are halfway there -- both in terms of distance sailed and geographically. To celebrate, Brian made us Pad Thai. It was delicious. If any of the Tiger Pants crew are reading this -- mine are about to go on in celebration of this accomplishment -- I'm sure there will be photos.

Today was also exciting because we got passed closely by Chim Chim just after we repaired a sail (Trick, if you're reading this, you definitely owe Brian and Matt a beer for their excellent mid-ocean TOP batten pocket repair) and backed down to get something off our keel. We've spent most of the day, though, sailing fast and having fun.

We've not seen a lot of trash or sea life so far. A few flying fish and we smelled a whale the other night. Today, we saw an albatross. Those are cool creatures--and they good luck!

All is well out here on Resolute. The boys are still behaving, mostly. Oh, and if you were wondering, underwear change day exceeded expectations.


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1300 Mles to go

Well we are just having a heck of a time out here. The great sailing conditions are offsetting the lack of sleep, odor in the boat, and overall hygiene.

Just received the latest position report and we continue to climb up the leader board. We now stand first in class and 6th overall after a 300 mile day and 281 of that DMG. The new Pac 52 boats are going to be tough to beat but we are doing our best to keep up the pace.

After the latest weather download we expect the winds to continue to be 14-18 knots with a gradual lift trending as we sail around an isobar. There is a high pressure moving down with really light winds so we will be monitoring that closely. There is still a long way to go but at this point in time we will continue on starboard for another 600 miles and then gybe close to our layline to finish. We are all looking forward to some time on port tack so our bodies can straighten out and we can do some grinding with our left arms.

Stay tuned for more updates.

- Brian

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Saturday, July 8, 2017

(no subject)

Good morning Resolute Fans!

We're somewhere in the middle of our third day out here and things are feeling fine. I know you've likely seen the sailing updates from Brian, so I'm here to give you a little glimpse into life on board.

Let's start at the very beginning -- the dock. Somehow media got word that the youngest member of the fleet was aboard Resolute: Allison Bell, the 12 year-old. I appreciate the 25 years back! After an interview and some video footage (maybe keep your eye on the Transpac Facebook page and other sites), we satisfied the paparazzi, finished up final prep and headed to the start line. It was pretty neat to see Westward out there, at least for me, and nice to have all the support from loved ones.

We started, headed to Catalina and beyond. We settled nicely into our watch system and are doing 4 hours on during the day, 3 hours on at night. Everyone seems to be happy and healthy. The food is pretty good and so far, it doesn't smell too badly down below. The only complaint is that I apparently snore, which I have yet to believe because I haven't heard it!

The men on board have likely been keeping things cleaner than usual, is my suspicion, but they'll soon forget to mind their manners.

Time to go -- today is one of my favorite days -- underwear change day!

All is well aboard Resolute! For more updates check out our Facebook Page @ResolutesailingSoCal


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