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Sharing Pints and Latitudes

May 19, 2010 – Falmouth, England

(Click on the photo to enlarge it.)

Sue and Mike Proudfoot of the San Francisco-based Ingrid 38 Farida ignore their pints as they polish off the latest Latitudes in an historic British pub. © 2018 Jay Gardner

"I took this cute photo of friends Mike and Sue Proudfoot just after giving them the April and May editions of Latitude 38," writes Jay Gardner of the Bay charter boat Adventure Cat. "Mike and Sue have sailed their 38-ft wooden Ingrid ketch, Farida, from San Francisco through the Canal, up the eastern seaboard and across the Atlantic to Ireland, Scotland, Norway, Sweden and England. Right now they're on their way to the Med. We met up last week at a 900-year-old pub — Pandora Inn — near Falmouth, England."

Gardner went on to explain that the HMS Pandora was the 114-ft three-masted square-rigger that sailed from Portsmouth in 1790 in search of the HMS Bounty and her mutinous crew. Though Fletcher Christian and his followers had already taken refuge on the then-uncharted Pitcairn Island, Captain Edward Edwards managed to capture 14 mutineers happily living and procreating on Tahiti. On August 21, 1791, Pandora was on her way home when she foundered on the Great Barrier Reef. All told, only 78 of the 134 men who'd been aboard at the start of the journey survived. Captain Edwards was exonerated for the loss after a court martial, but his reputation was damaged by his prisoners' claims of cruel treatment and he never received another sea-going command. At some point during his shore-based life, Edwards apparently purchased the pub Gardener and the Proudfoot's visited.

- latitude / ld

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Fall Crew List Party

Classy Deadline the 15th

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The 'Work Today, Cruise Tomorrow' Plan

May 19, 2010 – American Samoa

"After surviving two tsunamis, three cyclones, pneumonia, dengue fever, ear infections, a dog bite, a frustrating government job, altercations with a loser neighbor, and nearly constant noise and foul aromas from a nearby tuna cannery over the past eight months, we are ready for a new neighborhood." So wrote cruiser Kirk McGeorge of the St. Thomas, USVI-based Hylas 47 Gallivanter.

Kirk McGeorge at Rendezvous
Capt. Kirk and his family have had boatloads of adventures since 'Jumping the Puddle' from Panama in '09. He's seen here (green shirt) in competition at the Tahiti-Moorea Sailing Rendezvous last June. © 2018 Julie Turpin

As reported earlier, McGeorge, his wife Cath, and young son Stuart decided last fall to make an unplanned layover in American Samoa in order to fatten up their cruising kitty. When Kirk told us how easy it was to find work in that American territory, it inspired us to solicit info from readers on working in other locations while cruising. We got some very interesting responses, but we'd love to have more. So if you've found work while cruising in foreign waters we'd love to hear from you so we can share your experiences with our readers (anonymously, if you wish) in an upcoming feature article. We're interested in knowing where you found work, doing what, and for approximately what wages. Plus any additional tips you'd like to share on the best and worst places to work, and the most marketable professions or skill sets.

By the way, although the Gallivanter crew definitely endured some challenges during their stay in American Samoa, they also left with some fond memories. As Kirk puts it, "On the bright side, we've enjoyed the generous hospitality of some of the friendliest 'savages' we've ever shared a tropical island with. Cath firmly re-established her star status (as an on-air personality) with global FM radio, Stuart became a television star in his own right, Gallivanter is in better shape than ever, we made some great new friends, made a bit of dough, and learned how best to surf a 31-ft tsunami with a 20-ton yacht! God willing, we'll return here some day."

- latitude / at

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Ad: Essex Credit Refinancing Special

May 19, 2010 – Wherever You Sail

© 2018 Essex Credit

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Weekend Racing Wrap-up

May 19, 2010 – The Bay

Desdemona J/120
John Wimer's Desdemona powers upwind on her way to a win in the J/120 division at the St. Francis YC's Stone Cup. © 2018 Erik Simonson /

Since the St. Francis YC's Stone Cup served as season opener for the SF Bay IRC series, we'd expected it to draw a pretty sizeable IRC division last weekend. Unfortunately, the nine-boat turnout meant that everyone from Chip Megeath's R/P 45 Criminal Mischief to Daniel Thielman's Sabre 386 Kuai were racing together. The weekend's flood tide coupled with the fact that every race ended on a beat meant that the fleet was mighty stretched out along the Cityfront in each of the regatta's four races. Dan Woolery's defending season champion King 40 Soozal was tops in the division, knocking off four bullets. Attendance among the J/105s was also down, with only 16 boats making it out for the weekend, about seven fewer than made it out for the previous season counter in April. Adam Spiegel's Jam Session sailed a consistent 1-2-2-4 to take the title after perennial contenders, Bruce Stone's Arbitrage — defending North American Champion — and Scooter Simmons' Blackhawk — defending Fleet #1 Season Champion — had up-and-down first days before rebounding on Sunday with a bullet and another top-three apiece to finish second and third respectively. The J/120s were the 'winners' of the regatta in our minds, with a perfect attendance of all eight of the fleet's actively raced boats showing up for yet another closely-contested event. Dick Swanson's Grace Dances, Don Payan's Dayenu and John Wimer's Desdemona tied for first after Saturday's racing, setting the stage for a battle on Sunday won by Wimer, who reeled off a 1-3 to hold off a resurgent Steve Madeira and his Mr. Magoo crew, who in turn beat Dayenu on a countback.

Elite Keel 2010
Vincent Armando's Knarrmageddon looking bright and beautiful at the Elite Keel regatta. © 2018 Erik Simonson /

Over on the Circle, the San Francisco YC's Elite Keel regatta brought out some decent numbers of one design boats in six fleets, for five races. With the race to qualify for this year's International Knarr Championship in August firmly underway, the top boat-getter was the Knarr fleet, which brought out 18 boats. Sean Svendsen's Svenkist sailed a consistent 2-4-2-5-1 to finish six points clear of defending season champion Jon Perkins' Fifty-Fifty, which finished one point ahead of Don Nazzal's Adelante. Rich Jepsen's Rail to Rail nearly ran the table on the J/24 fleet, finishing with a 3-1-1-1-1. Philippe Kahn's Pegasus 492 did run the table against eight other Melges 24s. Mark Lowry's Express 27 Xena won that six-boat division. Michael Laport's Ginna Fe won the eight-boat Etchells division.

California International Blind Sailing Regatta
The inaugural California International Blind Sailing Regatta brought teams from all over the world to the Island YC and the Estuary for two days of racing. © 2018 Erik Simonson /

On the estuary, the Island YC hosted the inaugural California International Blind Sailing Regatta, and the Kiwi delegation took the title when they finished the regatta with three-straight bullets to win on a countback after tying with the team from Boston. We'll have a lot more on all three events, plus the American Armed Forces Cup, in the June edition of Latitude 38, but before we do, here's an important update on this weekend's Singlehanded Farallones Race. The good news is there are 68 boats signed up! The bad news is that it's too late to sign up, as the Coast Guard's requirement of knowing who the fleet will be before issuing a race permit meant that SSS organizers were forced to move the entry deadline up. A source close to the SSS reported that the Coast Guard had told organizers they would wait until Friday or Saturday morning before issuing the permit, if it all. So the organizers amended the SIs to include an in-the-Bay option in the event a permit wasn't issued. Now, if we had spent a bunch of money and time procuring a PLB or EPIRB for an event, only to find out we didn't actually have to do so, we'd be pretty frustrated, so we contacted the Coast Guard's LCDR DesaRae Janszen this morning to check on the status of the permit and inquire about the timing. Janszen got right back to us with the following:

"We do not grant Off-Shore Race permits until we get all the specific information about the boats in the race. This information is hugely important for any potential Search and Rescue response. We have learned over the years that the more we know about the boat calling in distress (the size, characteristics, and emergency equipment onboard), the faster and more efficient our Search and Rescue response can be. Singlehanded races to the Farallones are one of the most dangerous races on the West Coast. San Francisco has the highest Search and Rescue caseload in the Coast Guard in general. We have limited resources to do a very big job. Having race float plans in advance helps us save lives if a boat is in distress. When race organizers don't close registration until right before the event, they can't give us the float plans, so we can't issue the permit. It's not that we are purposefully waiting until the 'eleventh hour' to issue a permit, it's just that we need all the participant information beforehand. It is purely a safety issue.

"Late breaking news . . . as I was typing the above paragraph, Chief Brian Clark, my Marine Events Coordinator, reported that we have just received all of the float plans for this weekends' SSS race, so we will be issuing the permit this morning. I'm very happy to sign it, and I hope they have a safe and wonderful race." 

- latitude / rg

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