Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Selected Pictures and Slide Show

Many crew members sent me CD's with their photos. Click here to see my personal selection.

Storm at sea - a video by Astrid

Astrid made this video during the storm in early November, when we were on our way to Bermuda. She was in the companionway with her camera. I was standing behind her, trying to hold her upright. The ‘Sea Scout’ is hove to, with the storm jib aback and the tiller lashed to leeward. It lasted 48 hours. Written reports on the storm, by Astrid and Leo, are in the archives of November and December.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Video: On the Atlantic Ocean

Another video by Astrid. You can watch it on full screen, with good resolution. Astrid made the video when we were on our way from Bermuda to the Virgin Islands. I am frequently looking down at the compass. Our wind vane self steering gear broke during the November storm, and we had to steer by hand all the way  (900 miiles.)

Small sailboat on the Atlantic Ocean from Geert van der Kolk on Vimeo.

Friday, July 20, 2007

Michael's pictures

I just want to thanks Geert and Bob for great trip,food,friends.We spent one week together on sailing boat from North Carolina to Annapolis in Maryland.I was amazed how beautiful part of US is on east coast many people don't know .So I memorize picture along the way.Just click:

Michael's pictures

(or copy to your browser: http://picasaweb.google.com/mmmichlo/SailingTrip

May 9, 2007: Home!

Dick Teachout came to Deltaville for the last leg of the trip. We sailed into cold 20 knot headwinds in Virginia, and pea-thick fog early this morning. But we also had a beautiful reach, last night, from Smith Point to Point Lookout, while the sun was setting over the 10-mile wide mouth of the Potomac River.

I hope many more stories and pictures will be posted on the log soon. First I want to thank everybody who helped to make my pretty wild plan a reality. Apart from Olina and our children, no fewer than twelve people sailed on different parts of the trip. I am very fortunate to have so may good and adventurous friends. Thank you all. We'll do it again.


Plan B (and Plan C, and Plan D)

Humans possess an incredible capacity for denial in opposition to contrary evidence. Such stubbornness has led to many a tragedy for captains at sea. Geert does not possess such stubbornness.

We departed Norfolk Harbor Saturday morning, May 5th, with the best case scenario that we might, just might reach Galesville, MD by morning if we sailed non-stop through the night and the weather forecast held. Galesville would mean home for Geert and the end of a six-month voyage chronicled here so well by Geert and his crew. He was anxious and excited.

As we turned north out of Hampton Roads rounding the Thimble Shoals Light, the wind was perfect – dead out of the East at ten putting us on a beam reach. The GPS indicated ETA Galesville 20 hours. Geert beamed. But with the same smile on his face, he looked at me and said, “You know forecasts seldom follow their best predictions.” Accordingly, he described his plots for alternate routes to Solomon’s, St. Mary’s, and Deltaville, VA. Both Solomon’s and St. Mary’s would be fine, as they would mean easy drives home for Michael and I who both needed to leave the Sea Scout no later than Sunday. Deltaville, VA? Quite the opposite – how would we get home from there?

Hearing his words, the wind soon turned gradually from the south, still fine, but it was fading. Now we must motor. And now too NOAA’s computer voice changed its tune. Winds would turn from the North and intensify rapidly. We could expect 20 knots on the nose by nightfall with gusts to 30 and 40. The coastal forecast was even more dire – 20 to 30 foot waves in the gulf stream as a low quickly intensified off the Outer Banks. We all agreed that Deltaville it would be.

So we turned west. We slogged through a cold north wind and intermittent showers and tied up at Deltaville by 5:00pm. Geert’s smile and ever-present optimism never faded. We enjoyed happy hour in our warm cabin with a Belgium couple also put in at Deltaville and followed with a left-over dinner feast. Geert generously read aloud (in English) one of his short stories published in Holland and the voyage was ended for Michael and me. Geert will stay on for a few days until the weather breaks, then he too can dot the “i” in his trip. Godspeed.

The Party

L to R: Jana, David, Geert, Dick, Anja

On 7-7 at Mary's and Kevin's house. Anja and Dick travelled farthest to come - it certainly was quite a surprise! (Jana had both lower wisdom teeth removed two days before, which explains the hamster cheeks.)