Category

Chicago – Mobile

Looking for a sailboat

July 2012 we sold our beautiful Ranger 28. Now, we are on the look out for a new boat, one that will take us around the world. We currently live in Zuleta, in a small house in the Northern Andes of Ecuador. We have been here since December 2011, getting our economic situation ready for our circumnavigation. As of now, the plan is to buy our next boat after our wedding on August 2013 and move aboard between … read the rest...

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Selling Surkha today?

Last night, 3 days after posting Surkha on Craigslist, 2 days after being contacted by the first potential buyer, Mike stepped from the dock to Surkha’s decks. He had brought us a bottle of wine as a welcome to Mobile and the South, as he had noted in our phone conversations, that we were both far away from our homes. We didn’t know what to expect inviting this stranger to our boat, to potentially be her new owner, but whatever … read the rest...

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Ready to head north

Yesterday, we finished cleaning the cabin, scrapping the propeller and revising the electrical and motor systems. By 4 in the afternoon everything had gone back to normal. The only memory Surkha had of the mold laid on the new wall arrangement and some that we still have to clean from the deck. We will take off today before noon and our first stop will be Little and Big Alligator Creek.

Hope everything is going well for y’all.

Ayer terminamos de … read the rest...

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Surkha’s surprise

“She’s still floating” Jax said, when we parked the car in front of Surkha yesterday morning. We had driven most of the night, thanks to Martels’s words which kept us awake, and seeing our boat was all we wanted. We walked towards Surkha and hopped into the cockpit. The outside looked very clean, but we could see black mold all around the hatch, ” hopefully this is not a preview of what we’ll see inside” I said. We opened her … read the rest...

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Riverside, an industrial ride

From the very first day Jax and I started our trip down the Little Calumet River, we were blown away by the beauty yet coldness of the industrial sites that occupied the river shores. All throughout our journey South, from Chicago to Mobile, factories reminded us that we were on a ride down North America’s backbone. Nature played a minimal role, as huge dredging machines maintained the 9ft controlled depth, as if it were assumed that no wildlife lived there. … read the rest...

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700 miles in an overstuffed Prius

Saturday started early. Our plan was to drive away from the Dog River Marina around 7am. Of course, correcting for “cruising time”, that meant that the boat’s 4.5 inhabitants were just crawling out of cold beds around 7:30am. The next 4 hours were spent on last minute packing and the final steps of closing down and winterizing our sailboat. Around 11:30, the Prius and Thule topper were stuffed full of Tiger In Our Car’s supplies from a 3-month road trip, … read the rest...

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Southern hospitality, food, stories and more

Before coming to Alabama, I was a little nervous. Being from Latin America, I did not want to get wrapped up in their racist laws against immigrants. For over a year, Jax and I have heard stories of people getting IDed due to their physical appearance, American born children from illegal immigrants not being allowed in school and social health services disappearing for low income families – regulations that do not show the best part of Alabama. Once we arrived … read the rest...

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Locking through, a brief tutorial on lock edicate and maneuvering

Before our journey from Chicago, IL to Mobile, AL, the idea of traversing 40+ locks was daunting. Now, after locking through all of them in different times of  day/night and types of weather, we have realized that not knowing what to expect can make locks scarier than they actually are. So below, we have included some advice based on our own experiences.

When approaching the lock, hail them through the VHF radio. We found that the hailing channel used changes … read the rest...

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overwhelming sea and tiger in our car

We have been in Mobile Bay for a day and half. What we thought would bring a huge feeling of accomplishment, has become an ocean of uncertainty. We left our anchorage at around 8am, with a Southeast wind on our bow, the waves were present yet not intimidating. Within a couple hours we were in Mobile Bay, which is nothing like we expected. The international port, what appeared to be a robotically controlled operation was flooded with HUGE cargo ships. … read the rest...

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Feeling the ocean breeze

Another 4am morning today, third in a row. The fog was heavy again – heavier than yesterday. We were docked near a Canadian trawler, Last Chance, who was also awake early. We decided to sail the 3 miles to the lock together, relying on their instruments to get through the fog. By the time we arrived at the lock, the fog was so thick that the lockmaster decided to pause all locking until it lifted.

Taking advantage of the break … read the rest...

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Sailing 100 miles, 14 hours on Thanksgiving

Today was the big day – our first “century”. We spent last night near a Coast Guard cutter station in Demopolis, AL. The next morning we were up at 4am for the second day in a row. Shortly after, we were on deck, in 30* temperatures, a flawless starry sky above and ready to get wet and muddy. Anchors stowed and transmission coaxed into forward, we headed out into a deep fog.

The morning’s fog lasted for three hours. In … read the rest...

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What Inspired Us To Take Off

As recent young graduates, Jax and I are often asked why we decided to go sailing? And how can we afford it? Below I (Caye) will attempt to answer these questions (With Jaxon’s input, of course)

The night of the third day we had known each other and my third day at Beloit College, Jax and I decided he was going to wait for me to graduate (he was a junior and I was a freshman) and sail the world. … read the rest...

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We are flying! Estamos volando!

Our last update was mid-evening two days ago. To recap, the anchorage we wanted was too shallow, so we had to night-sail for 2 hours or so. We ended up finding another anchorage in about half the distance we thought we would need and dropped anchor around 8:00pm – it felt like 10pm with the 3 preceding hours of darkness and tiredness from waking at 4am.

The following day (yesterday) was a short one. We had the option to travel … read the rest...

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Heading South Fast

Our last two days have brought with them some change. For starters, we are in semi-warm humid weather, big plus. Second, due to the large spacing in between adequate anchorage, we are putting in very long days – 13+ hours. We have entered the Tombigbee River and finally we are using Señor Tutti again, our auto pilot, whose main goal is to hold the tiller straight, giving our hands a break and making our trip more efficient. Regardless of the … read the rest...

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