Monday, July 25, 2011

Anchored in Neah Bay

Neah Bay is where everybody leaving from the Pacific Northwest stays waiting for a suitable weather window for their trip south.  Its a sailing landmark of sorts in these waters.  However on this trip, I'm only here to take a look around.  This is not yet the start of my big sailing trip.

I've taken a day off to catch up on a few chores.  I'm baking bread and have pressure cooked a batch of beans which I can use in meals over the next few days.  The wind has been good all day, 10 to 15 knots.  Race Rocks to my east was reporting 38 knots with the Central and Eastern Straits having a gale watch in effect.

I'm sitting here at anchor, stealing an unlocked wifi connection from shore using my Ubiquiti Bullet wifi adapter.  I have the inverter on with my laptop plugged in.  My solar panels and wind generator have been excellent.  My battery bank is fully charged and I'm actually generating power above what all the devices are drawing right now.  At night I've been watching a video on my laptop and then playing with my SSB with laptop connected, drawing quite a lot of power.  On light wind nights, when the wind generator wasn't working at all, I have been waking with the battery bank down around 40 amp hours.  The bank is normally fully charged by noon, even while I'm at anchor.  Today where there was wind all night, the battery bank was fully charged when I woke up.  The wind/solar power is working out really well.

Enough techno-babble.  The main reason I'm here is to make the decision about whether or not I stay in Seattle an extra year or leave for California and Mexico in around 4 weeks.  The boat is going to be ready for the trip, I'm trying to decide if I'm ready or not.  I still haven't sailed offshore or single handed on a multiple day journey where you need to get sleep.  Obviously I need to be able to do both of those things if I'm going to take this boat down the coast.  So….  Do I stay or do I go?  That is the question I'm trying to answer.


  1. Craig -- also have a PSC 37, but on the other coast. Am interested in hearing some more about the solar and wind set up you chose. I am a little behind your timetable but hoping to do the same thing. Cheers and Fair Winds


  2. I vote go! Not that we don't want you around, but do you really want to spend another winter in Seattle? Palapa bars sound much more appealing. :) besides, what are you going to learn/prep for in seattle that you can't do in CA or Mexico? :)

  3. That's weird, I haven't been receiving emails when others add comments to my postings. Sorry, I just read these two. Christy - good advice. I'm taking it! :-)

    John - that's awesome, I'd like to hear more about your prep and trip as it progresses. If you start a blog, or have one, drop me a link. I'll be tracking my solar and wind setup as the trip progresses. I have two Kyocera 135 watt panels and an Air-breeze on a mast I mounted in the rear deck to the port of the propane locker. The mast is sweet - it was designed by Terry at YachtFitters. It holds my radar as well. Anyway - I don't have a lot of experience with the combined output yet, but on my last trip I had more power than I could use. If it could be arranged, I could sell power to others. This may change in hot climates as my fridge is going to be consuming a lot more power down there. But I'll see how it goes and let you know along the way.