s/v Bluesky: South Africa to Saint Helena, South Atlantic Ocean, April 2010

#gallery-1 { margin: auto; } #gallery-1 .gallery-item { float: left; margin-top: 10px; text-align: center; width: 33%; } #gallery-1 img { border: 2px solid #cfcfcf; } #gallery-1 .gallery-caption { margin-left: 0; } /* see gallery_shortcode() in wp-includes/media.php */ Twelve foot seas in the South Atantic. Sighting Saint Helena after twelve days. The historic buildings of Jamestown. Drake and Phoebe enjoy the rope swing at the dinghy dock. Old canons and anchors litter the wharf. Phoebe practising her diving at the pool The olympic size pool at the water front. Anne´s place The Union Jack with Jacobs Ladder behind. After getting our land legs, we ascended the 699 steps of Jacobs Ladder. Jamestown from half way up Jacobs Ladder The Consulate Hotel, center, with railway girders to support the verandah. Jim buries a bottle of wine near the top. If want the coordinates email us. Phoebe and Drake proud to make it to the top. Happy to make it to the top going back down Looking down into Jamestown The steering gear from SS Papanui Old wharehouses along the wharf. Jonah, John and Jim The Briars Pavillion The Heart shaped waterfall. Longwood House im slicing off the course, thankfully no damage. The millenium forrest, where 5000 gumwood trees have been planted as a conservation initiative. Emma. Napoleon, Lynn Rattle a new temporary resident and Jonah off s/v Brillig. Phoebe and Drake present a Latitude and Attitude´s flag to Anne´s place. Phoebe above and John from s/v Dancyn below, snorkeling the SS Papanui St. Paul´s cathedral built in 1851

Jamestown is located in a deep volcanic valley on the remote English Island of Saint Helena.  The 1500 mile passage from Saldanha Bay took 12 days.  The first four, we experienced 25-30 knots of wind with 12 foot seas.  It is very difficult […]

s/v Bluesky: Saldanha Bay, February 2010

The day Ruth and Ed were leaving we visited the Spier Cheetah Outreach program. We had the opportunity to get up and personal with these beautiful beasts.  They ensure the safety of free range cheetah’s, by educating the public.  Cheetah’s tend to kill the live stock on farms, so the outreach program will rescue them.  They also breed Turkish Anatolian Shepherd dogs to protect the live stock, thus scaring the cheetah’s away.  There are approximately 1000 Cheetah’s left in South Africa.  Next to the outreach program is the Eagle Encounter, a bird of prey rehabilitation and education facility.  Arriving just in time to see the falconer feed a secretary bird, photo right.  They like snakes, so he ties food to the end of a plastic snake and teases the bird.  Using his legs and talons, the secretary bird kicks and stomps on the snake until it is dead.  Another treat was watching him train and feed the Harris hawks, mentioning they are one of the smartest birds and he can train them in less than a week.  The children had the opportunity to pet a barn owl, top right and huddled in a protective crate were four baby barn owls.  After our encounters we headed to Moyo for a refreshing drink and the children were excited to get their faces painted.  Before dropping granny and grandpa off at the airport, we stopped for some tea at Vredenheim winery, where they had the Cape Town Lion encounter, featuring white lions.  In one day the children had the opportunity to pet a cheetah, lion and owl, not to bad

Granny and Grandpa had a long and safe trip home.  Phoebe and Drake recovered after only a few hours […]

Cape Town, January - February 2010

Now that Blue Sky is back in the water at Hout Bay it was time to get play tourist and relax. Granny and Grandpa B-Q booked a great two bedroom apartment in The Lagune resort that overlooked Table Bay with a view of Table Mountain and Cape Town.  The hotel had three swimming pools and was located right on the beach.  Having sundowners on the balcony a whale treated us to a show, watching him breech just off the beach, top right. When the wind blows in Cape Town, it blows, it was spectacular watching the water blow off the tops of the waves, thankful we were not out at sea.

Previously I wrote about rounding the Cape of Good Hope seaward of Bellows Rock.  Here is a picture (left) from land that shows the boil coming off the rock.  Driving around Chapman’s Peak Road, we experienced beautiful views of Hout Bay, below.  Ruth, Drake, Emma, Phoebe and Ed are pictured at Cape Point with a view of False Bay behind them.  The family poses in front of the Cape of Good Hope sign proclaiming the longitude and latitude.

To the left is a photo of Nelson Mandela’s cell located on Robben Island, where he served 27 years in confinement, starting in 1964.  We took a ferry to this austere island, which was once connected to the mainland many years ago.  Since the Dutch settled at the Cape the island has primarily been used as a prison.  It was also used as a hospital and leprosy colony, where the graves are pictured above.   All the guides are ex-prisoners and ours, Sipho, above left, served five years. The photo behind him is the last boat leaving Robben island with […]

s/v Bluesky: Hout Bay, South Africa January - February 2010

Our “free time” had expired in Simons Town and we were scheduled to be hauled out in Hout Bay on January 4th.  That morning of the third the weather was fair and the seas were settling so we ran out of False Bay and rounded The Cape of Good Hope.  On land it is known as Cape Point. The photograph above left is The Cape of Good Hope.  We rounded it south of Bellows Rock while a local catamaran took the short cut inside and very near the Cape.  The commercial shipping was another couple of miles beyond us to sea, giving the Cape an even wider berth.

If you see the table cloth over the mountains in Cape Town, it means the wind will be strong from the SE. Above the clouds cascading over the peaks and below a blue sky day.

Clear day & flat seas at Hout Bay. Protection is good here but if it blows from the east it can be quite a challenge.

Phoebe & Drake on the cannons at the northern entrance to Hout Bay. Great fish & chips place is just out of the picture to the left. It's called "Fish On The Rocks."

When we were in Redondo Beach our good friend Chad Thomas was always willing to let me tag along.  Chad has been involved in the commercial shipping business nearly all his life.  He has been the Captain of survey vessels, tugs that tow huge ocean going barges & crew vessels that support the light oil tankers that moor off the Chevron refinery in El Segundo.  Chad always opted for sea room and saftey rather than taking the short cut.  I think he burned this into my mind!  I always think of Chad […]

s/v GRACIE EMMETT: LAKE CHAMPLAIN – Corridor and Cruising Ground, Part 3

Part 3. Lake Champlain Anchorages – Kingsland to Valcor

By: Duane Nealon

KINGSLAND BAY is about 8 miles north of Westport and because Kingsland State Park is a popular summer destination, both the park facilities and bay can be congested during the day, especially when one of the many special events is underway. No pets are allowed ashore at the park.

Kingsland is an excellent south wind anchorage, if the wind shifts, an alternative anchorage can be found 3 miles north in Converse Bay, which has the added protection of two small islands.


BURLINGTON, the largest city in Vermont, with a long maritime history, is situated 18 miles north of Kingsland Bay. You can’t visit Burlington without being captivated by its livability and essence of uniqueness and originality. The shoreline and downtown are well designed and pedestrian/pet friendly, with an extensive network of waterfront pathways and central business district vehicle-free zones. The vibrant downtown area and several universities and colleges add to the cosmopolitan flavor. A good starting point when arriving in the harbor is the Community Boathouse, which acts as a visitor center for newly arrived sailors. Boathouse employees also manage the harbor facilities and transient moorings/slips.

Burlington is best enjoyed in measured doses. Lake Champlain sailors can return several times during a cruising season to fully experience the rich offering of cultural and recreational delights. When things become too hectic, retreat can be found 4 miles to the North Bay by anchoring off Bernard Leddy Park and from there, a pleasant diversion to Valcor Island, which is located 15 miles north, just south of the City of Plattsburgh, New York.

VALCOR ISLAND is just the opposite of Burlington. […]