About Me

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Singapore
I am owned by Pauline and Mark Blasky. My hull was built at the Duncan Marine Yard in Taiwan and launched in Dec of 1980. It is a William Garden design based on the Pixie Design and called by Duncan Marine a Freedom 45. They are the fourth owners and have owned me the longest. They have done extensive refitting to me including replacing my entire deck structure and rig. My masts are roughly 10% taller than original and now are made of aluminium as opposed to the original wood ones, which, though pretty, were always problematic. You can read more about me under "MORE ABOUT SARI TIMUR"

June 26, 2015

Chichagof

Same position as yesterday.  We did some exploring yesterday.  There is a sea lion rookery on one of the nearby islands.  We have been catching glimpses of the odd sea lion here and there but decided to dinghy over to the area and see if we could see some and get some pics.  Long cold dinghy ride but well worth it.  We saw quite a few sitting on the rocks.  As we started to get closer they started to get rather aggressive so we kept our distance.  There was one huge male that was obviously the dominant male as he was almost twice the size of the others.  We nicknamed him Jabba the Hutt.  The pictures we have show he is big but not as scary as in real life.  Late in the evening the crews from the boats who are here gathered and we had a small bonfire on the beach. 

Two of the boats left this morning to take advantage of the wind.  Three boats stayed behind as we felt though the wind would be useful the easterly on the other side of it would make the anchorage at Kiska pretty unattractive.  So we are holding out for another weather window hoping for something better after the easterlies blow through.

dinghy ride to the rookery

bunch of sea lions in the water

big alpha male working his way up the rocks .....

........ and the rest of them made way for him

June 25, 2015

The Bearing Sea


Position N 52 d 55.538
        E 173 d 14.437

We moved the boat around to Chichagof Harbor today so officially entered the Bearing Sea of Deadliest Catch fame.  Hardly no wind so we motored over.  On the way we saw some whales in the bay.  They didn't get close enough for us to confirm what they were and we thought they might be Orcas.  But then later after we got on the north side of the island we had a whole pod of them come and play around the bow.  We could definitely confirm them as Orcas and because they were a bit smaller than the others we had seen earlier not sure what the others were.

Chichagof is very pretty and it looks like it will be good protection from any bad weather.

June 23, 2015

Change of Plans


Position N 52 d 48.668
        E 173 d 10.081

If you plotted that position you will see that we are in Casco Bay rather than in Chichagof.  After giving all the descriptions about working around the timing of arrival yesterday, the boats on the radio sched said they could guide us in using our AIS. If we started to seem to be heading off track they could hail us on the VHF.  That would mean roughly 5 hours more sleep, so we took them up on the offer.  All the boats in front of us assured us the electronic charts were spot on.  We would have only attempted this if that was the case as there are loads of rock areas around here.  As we were heading into the bay, an Orca played by us and followed us in for about half an hour.  It was after sunset and getting dark, so no pictures.

We went for a little exploration trip around this afternoon.  Again we posted wrongly yesterday, there are no inhabitants on Attu.  They left a few years back.  So walking around the old airport today was kind of strange.  A ghost town atmosphere except loads of birds and flowers etc.

The scenery is quite nice.  There is still snow on the hills only a few meters up.  There was talk of a short hike up to get some snow for the drinks but really the rum and ginger ales last night were cold enough without ice!  This morning we fired up the wood stove and had a nice toasty warm cabin for the first time in two weeks.

Anyway we plan to be here about a week between here and Chichigof and then head out on the next weather system that will carry us east.

view from the boat

the old airstrip

the old airport building

the memorial plague

a gun with a propeller from a downed plane

June 22, 2015

Attu On The Radar


Position N 52 d 18.970
       E 172 d 36.477


Kind of foggy today so though we are supposedly in sight of the Near Islands we can not see them.  I fired up the radar and it also was having problems seeing them at the 36 nautical mile range but as we got closer at about 30 miles we were able to see both Agattu  and Attu.  We will put Agattu on starboard and Attu to port.  We are heading up to Chichagof Harbor on the north side of Attu, as we would be arriving Casco Bay on the south east side in the middle of the dark.  This is not so well protected but more popular as we have just discovered there is a US Coast Guard Loran station manned here with about twenty guys.  So the boats in front of us are heading here.  It is a pretty tight area and finding an anchoring spot in the dark after 12 days at sea seems too troublesome.

The seas are flat calm today with just a small residual swell coming in.  We expect to arrive just after 0100 JST in the morning.  Which is ok because that is when first light happens.  We can anchor, finally turn on a heater, have a celebratory drink, and still get to sleep.

We hope to stay here a few days, fix our steering and explore. Then we think we will head on towards Kishka with a weather window. Probably about a week's time.

1300 Position Report 21 June


Position N 51 d 01.590
        E 169 d 56.140

wind is only 5 knots from the west but the swell is still a bit large so still motorsailing.

The freezer definitely bit the dust yesterday it is still extinct gone the way of the dodo.

all is well on board.  Plotted the position of the hotspring that is on Attu but forgot to load the road maps for Alaska.  Apparently there are roads there.  So will have to wing it when exploring.  I ordered a bicycle. I wish we had it for this trip but alas it won't be ready until August.

We have 184 miles to go so baring any problems should be there late on the 23rd.  Sorry that is on the other side of the date line so maybe on the 22nd!

Death Of a Freezer


Position N 49 d 55.500
        E 167 d 48.700

Well another small system passed over us yesterday.  Giving us 25 plus knots on the nose.  We had to drop off again to sail but determined not to head for Hawaii again we sheeted in as tight as we dare and headed for Northern Vancouver for 20 hours.  The system is passed us now and we are just pushing through the left over slop at the present.  Unfortunately, and we should know better when so heeled over and close hauled the water can sneak out of the bilges and congregates when on port tack near where our portable freezer sits.  This is not a problem if we remember to mop it up every so many hours.  Guess what we forgot and yes this morning we found the freezer getting thoroughly washed with salt water.  We took it apart and flushed it.  We occasionally get some indication lights, so maybe it will come good later.  But we think it is toast.  Of course now that we are not in the tropics no more I guess it is not so important but we will miss having it.

We have made the turn and are motoring again so under present conditions we will be in with in three days if we do not run out of diesel.  Note we can not run out of diesel getting to Attu but we still have about 600 nm to go to the nearest filling station after Attu so we need to keep some large reserves.

June 19, 2015

Next Time Zone Yesterday


Position N 49 d 48.413
        E 165 d 00.991

As we all learned in grade school the planet we live on is a spinning orb revolving around the sun.  As it is spinning and thus facing the sun at different aspects at different times each revolution is broken down into 24 hours.  To make it simple then the Earth has 24 time zones.  The reference time zone is based out of Greenwich, England and for every 15 degrees of longitude one moves east or west there is a time zone change.  If one moves east the time keeps increasing and if one moves west it decrease.  Halfway around the world from Greenwich is the International Date Line.  As one crosses it one either gains or loses a day depending in which direction.  We have just crossed 165 degrees East so our next time zone would be 180 or the International Dateline.  However as is often the case man interferes with things natural and time is not immune.  If one looks at time zone charts they do not exactly follow longitudinal lines but weave in and around population centers.  No one lives in this part of Alaska yet here is where one of the largest variances lay.  We will actually cross the IDL before we reach Attu but technically we should not cross it until after we pass Kishka.

Anyway this crew is still on Japan Standard time until we land in Attu so it is all irrelevant anyway.  But thanks for listening!

June 18, 2015

Progress


Position  N49 d 02.93 N
         E162 d 56.705 E

Well yesterday was extremely frustrating.  In hindsight we probably could of made it less so by tacking closer to the rum line rather than trying to out think the weather.  The weather though not bad was lumpy and we sailed one very long tack to the South East always adjusting the track rather than the sails for the course we were on which felt the most comfortable.  We did not notice the subtle wind shifts and therefore lost ground.  After sailing from 0400 until 2200 most of it averaging over 5.5 knots sometimes hitting low sevens we ended up back near the rumline with only a 12 mile gain.  It is amazing how cold and comfort will trump speed over ground!  Anyway could of been worse we could have lost ground.  The seas and wind have died off now and we are motor sailing along the rum line, a little slow as there is some residual swell but making progress.  Another low is in the area so we still do not know how that will affect our progress but the grib files tell us after that low the wind will be favorable.  Lets hope the models are wrong in our favor and we do not have to wait that long

June 17, 2015

Noon Position June 17


Position 48 d 30.81 N
        161 d 29.36 E

Wind NNE 15 knots  Speed 5.2 knots direction 100 degrees

We are sailing pretty close for the seas, more toward Hawaii than Attu but all is well on board.  Got another bird in the toilet last night.  He stayed there patiently even while Pauline came in and had a Pee.  Mark quickly redirected him over the side shortly there after. He is the same type as the first one the other night so we have a better picture for identification.

The winds are supposed to back tomorrow and we should be closer to our course.

June 16, 2015

1300 June 16


Well first let me apologize for my earlier post aging dad before his time.  Today is his birthday.  Happy Birthday Dad.

Position 48 d 03.472 N
        159 d 21.954 E

The wind has dropped out completely.  There is a bit of left over swell but the water we can see our reflection in it is so flat.  So the motor is on and we are battened down because the next time we see wind it will be rather strong and from the wrong direction.  But the good news is that the low has decreased a lot and it should not be as bad as earlier thought nor last as long.  So hopefully it will only set our landfall back by a day or so.  And maybe once it passes give us a boost to make up for some lost time.

Pauline saw two whales fairly close this morning at 0230 she came down for the camera and to wake me but by the time we were back on deck they had sounded.  She did see them much later but much further away in the fog line but by then I was already back in bed.

We are staying on Japan Standard Time until we make landfall in Attu or wherever.  That means at this longitude the sun sets at about 1830 but rises early.  This morning at 0130.  Of course this latitude also gives us a lot more hours of daylight.  It is a bummer that we will probably not make anchor yet on Midsummer's Eave to see what a really long day looks like at 54 degrees.  I have witnessed this before both up here and in the North Sea but Pauline has not. So hopefully it will be clear.  That reminds me why do they call it Midsummer's Eve when officially it is the first day of summer?

Anyway all is well on board.

For the Birds


Position 1300 15 June

47 d 06.298 N
156 47.624 E

We are sailing and having a great run.  No engine for over 26 hours now and sometimes touching 6.3 knots, also sometimes dropping to 4, but the average has been well over five.  That low is still continuing to threaten and is probably what is making our wind now.  So conditions will not be ideal for that much longer.

So what about the title.  Last night in the middle of Mark's watch a bird chased him down into the cabin.  No small feet as he had to negotiate through the bimini and dodger.  Anyways he turned on the light to find him and catch him when in flies a big bird.  He now calls for reinforcements and wakes Pauline to come with the camera.  We are not sure if the big bird was always chasing the little bird or if they were attracted by the same thing.  Maybe the lights from the chart plotter or the self steering?  Anyways keep watch on this page in about a month when we get to internet we will post pictures and we ask for the comments from you bird lovers on what kind of birds they are.  Unfortunately the pics of the little bird are a bit blurry and he is in Mark's hands but a true bird person can maybe tell us.

Oh and if the big guy was chasing the little guy you will be pleased to know we let him have a large head start.



Noon Position 14 June


Position  46 d 11.588 N
         154 d 16.628 E

Sailing 3.2 knots course 65 degrees  We have only had the engine off two hours today and four hours yesterday which is a bit of a worry.  But we still have diesel now.  Our plan is to end up in Attu with a half of a tank.  That we might have no engine for a couple of days waiting for the low to slam us, push us back some and hopefully give us some wind on its back side.  We heard from the first boat to leave last Friday and they have arrived and are exploring Attu.  For us I am beginning to wonder if this is an endurance test or not.  But we are making progress so all is good.  Temperature got down to 3.3 degrees last night but up to 5.7 now.  Still in fog but seas are flat, better be with this little wind! Barometer is flat at 1007 it s 60 feet up in the air so a little different than sealevel reading but it is the variation we are concerned with.

Wow Jo0y I just saw 3.6 on the speed log!

June 13, 2015

Postion 0530 June 13

Happy 80th Birthday Dad!!!

Position 44 d 59.11 N 150 d 52.35 E

We saw our first whale of the trip yesterday.  And he was big!  We didn't get that close to him, no closer than 100 meters but he made an impression.  We are not whale experts so until we get a book, internet or some advice we do not know what type.  But he was huge.  We first saw him while trying to scan for a ship that we knew was on the horizon.  We then saw him blow.  He kept blowing at different spots as we were passing by he sat on the surface for a while and that is how we know he was big.  He then rolled over and we could see a large hump where his dorsal fin is.  Not sure if this is because of the way he was swimming or his actual shape.  But we are calling him a humpback until we learn otherwise.  He then dove but not before putting his flukes high up in the air for us to say goodbye.

 This morning we had a visitor.  A very large and curious seagull land on the dinghy davits and decided to take a ride for a few miles.  Rather cute fellow.  I got a couple of pics but can not upload those until probably Dutch Harbour or later.
We are motoring now and have been for 16 hours.  Hopefully the wind will come right soon.  There is a low schedule to go under us in about 6 days so trying to get north but the current wind has us heading almost due east.
We should pass under the 1000 miles to go mark today but that is rum line and we will not be making rum line with these light winds.
Anyway all is well on board.  A little warmer today with the wind shifting from the south west instead of the north west.

Making Progress

Position at 0700 12 June
44 d 01.398 N 148 d 37.484 E

The wind and seas are lightening so pretty soon we will probably be motoring but right now the conditions are great. A little cold at a balmy 4.8 degrees C but otherwise we are making progress.

Had some issues with steering yesterday. Found a leak so think that is where the problem is.  Luckily it is slow enough that we should be able to keep ahead of it now that we know it is there. Thank goodness I have lots of hydraulic oil on board.

Not as many birds but still plenty.

June 11, 2015

1600 P0sition Report

Position 43 d 33.68 N 147 d 02.26 E

We don't normally post twice a day, but thought you might be interested in our proximity to the Russian Islands.  We are getting a mixed bag of wind.  Everything from 3 knots to 40 mostly from the northwest so very cold. Lots of sea birds and Russian fishing boats.

Position Report

Position 43 d 05.55 N 145 d 45.929 E

We left yesterday just after lunch.  We have been able to sail about half the time so far. All is well on board except it is cold.

June 9, 2015

Long Enough?

Well we are now cleared out and heading out in a couple of hours.  The swell is still up right now but the wind has shifted and should knock the swell back within the next couple of hours.  The window looks pretty good for the next seven days.  Light winds for some of it so we will have to be careful not to run the engine too much. As we will still need diesel to get from Attu to Adak and there it is only iffy if we can diesel up.  Will have to be done via jury cans so don't want to have to need too much.

We have loved almost every minute in Japan, other than the floating debris jamming up our prop. The people, the scenery, the customs and of course the food.  It has been a very memorable year.  Too many very gracious people to mention.  Always helping and gifts that we can never come close to repaying.  Japanese people, you can be very proud of your hospitality.

And no, as the title says, is a year long enough? Probably not, we feel we have only scratched the surface here but it is time to move on.

Sayonara Japan and arigatou gozamashita.

June 4, 2015

Delayed

We were all set to leave this morning but yesterday's forecast had a nasty going to hit us in about four days.  This would have meant bad seas and contrary weather for about three days.  We were toying with shall we go or shall we stay for a couple of hours before we finally decided to stay put.  A couple of the faster boats left as they felt they might just be able to out run the worst of it.  But we are too slow for that.  So we got a visa extension and will stay put.  The next window will not open before Tuesday or Wednesday so we are sitting with crossed fingers hoping the next window will be better.

Another Position Indicator

We have had lots of problems with Yotreps, either randomly resetting our position to somewhere we once were, or not updating us.  So in the "where are we" box we have added another position indicator from the HAM people.  This should update daily when we check our weather etc (as the Yotreps one is supposed to) but it only holds the last 12 months. So click which ever link to follow us.

June 3, 2015

Getting Close to Departure

Well we are getting closer to leaving.  Right now the barometer is dropping pretty good.  Once the low passes we will try to sail out on its coat tails before the next one comes along.  Unfortunately it looks like Friday afternoon is when it will be passing us.  We are a bit superstitious and a Friday departure is bad news.  So we would like to wait until Saturday morning.  First light is about 03:30 so hopefully we can still catch the winds to clear us away from Hokkaido and the Russian islands before we have to turn as the wind shifts.

To our fathers, happy Father's Day.  Katie and Travis have a great wedding, we are sorry we could not be there but we will be there in spirit.  We have your wedding gift on board and think you will like it.  Do us a favour and get a post card while on your honeymoon.

We are enjoying Kushiro, hopefully we will post some pics before we leave.