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Photos of the Day: The Northwest Passage in Four Weeks

December 4 - Pt. Richmond

The normally difficult east-to-west route through the Northwest Passage was relatively easy this year, allowing the 42-ft steel Stary to complete the trip in four weeks.
Photo Dominik Bac

The crew of the Polish-flagged Stary, the youngest crew to traverse the infamous Northwest Passage - and the first boat to do so flying the Polish flag - sailed under the Golden Gate Bridge on Saturday to a warm welcome from the local Polish community, as well as many others who were impressed with their recent accomplishment. The crew of 20-somethings embarked on their expedition, which took them only four weeks (many boats wait for years for the ice to clear enough to make the trip), to commemorate the 100-year anniversary of the first successful crossing by Roald Amundsen of what many consider to be the world's most difficult sailing route.

The young crew of Stary are thrilled to be in the 'tropics' of San Francisco Bay after crossing the Northwest Passage.
Photo Latitude/LaDonna

Stary is being hosted by Brickyard Cove Marina, and the fun-loving crew plan on exploring the Bay for a week or so before they head south. Check out the January issue of Latitude 38 for the scoop on their trip, which included diving under icebergs, camping on top of icebergs, climbing up icebergs and flying over icebergs.

- latitude / ld


Velux 5 Oceans Update

December 4 - Fremantle, Australia

Stamm victorious

Bernard Stamm arrived in Fremantle today, easily - or as easily as one can sail through 70 knot winds in the Southern Ocean - beating his closest competitor in leg one of the Velux 5 Oceans race by nearly 1,000 miles.

Second-place Kojiro Shiraishi is expected to arrive by the middle of this week. Further out, Sir Robin Knox-Johnston may stop in the Kerguelen Islands to pick up more fuel to power his onboard systems, notably his autopilot, before making the final push to the finish. Graham Dalton is hot on RKJ's heels and if RKJ must stop, should finish the first leg in third place. Unai Barsurko is approximately 600 miles behind Dalton, and more than 5,000 miles away from Fremantle. Lucky for the latter half of the fleet, race organizers announced over the weekend that they've delayed the start of leg 2 (to Norfolk, VA) until January 14.

Alex Thomson kissed the dock after he arrived with Mike Golding in Cape Town.
Photos Courtesy WWI/onEdition

Meanwhile, following the rescue of Alex Thomson and subsequent dismasting of his boat Ecover, Mike Golding today said he will retire from race. Golding and Thomson arrived in Cape Town Saturday evening.

- latitude / ss

Solo Circumnavigator Making Steady Progress

December 4 - South Pacific

As reported in September's issue of Latitude 38, Southern California sailor Ken Barnes, 47, is currently attempting to become the first American singlehander to circumnavigate the globe nonstop, via the 'three capes', from the West Coast of North America.

Barnes' route
Graphic Courtesy www.kensolo.com

Sailing aboard Privateer, a Maurice Griffith-designed Gulfstream 44, this newcomer to the realm of bluewater sailing has left the Doldrums in his wake and is now making steady progress into the South Pacific, where he will eventually round Cape Horn.

"I am now at lat 18.38s long 119w and learning all about squalls and the joys of the one-minute mad reef," he wrote last week. The following are two recent excerpts from Barnes' on board reports:

November 17: "God help anyone that was within 300 miles of Hurricane Sergio. I was 900 miles away and felt its effects. The sky in every direction was dark gray and black with heavy, thick cloud cover and you could feel everything around being sucked into its center. By first light I was reefed down to jib, staysail and triple-reefed mizzen. I was not about to give up an inch of the hard-won southing I had fought for over the past several days, so my course was east southeast toward the storm."

November 30: "When I was in the ITCZ (Intertropical Convergence Zone), between 10 degrees north and the equator, I was having a tough time making any southing due to direct headwinds and a loose headstay. . . One evening I'm sailing east southeast not making much southing, but a little, when I noticed the wind had shifted and I could pinch up a little. A few minutes later the same thing happened so I came up again. This went on until the lift was about 60 degrees. Boy, was I excited. I was finally headed only about 10 degrees off dead south and thinking I may nave finally hit the southeast trades, when suddenly I heard the off course alarm on the autopilot go off. It turned out that even though I was telling the autopilot to turn the boat and it was gallantly trying to, the boat would not respond because there was so much current that there was effectively no water passing over the rudder even though I was making 4 knots."

See www.kensolo.com for further info and updates.

- latitude / aet

Schoonmaker Assistant Harbormaster Sentenced

December 4 - Sausalito

Temple Stuart, the 59-year-old assistant harbormaster at Schoonmaker Point Marina in Sausalito, who pleaded guilty last month to voluntary manslaughter in the death of her ailing mother, was sentenced last Wednesday to six years in a state prison and three years' parole. Temple's mother Isabel, 88, was suffering from several painful illnesses, including bladder cancer and chronic cystitis, and was confined to a Novato nursing facility when she died in January, 2004. Temple admitted helping her mother die at her request.

Temple, who is well liked by Latitude staffers who keep their boats at Schoonmaker, was surrounded by a large group of friends during her sentencing, including Isabel's sister who flew in from B.C. to support her niece. Temple is free on bail until December 28.

All I Want for Christmas . . .

December 4 - Under the Tree

It's that time again and if you're stuck for a gift for your favorite sailor, you might check out some of the new books that have crossed the editorial desk this year. We've sorted them into six categories for easy navigation.

NEW EDITIONS (available at major retailers):
Chapman Piloting & Seamanship, 65th Ed. - Elbert S. Maloney; $60
The Voyager's Handbook, 2nd Ed. - Beth A. Leonard; $39.95
Landfalls of Paradise, 5th Ed. - Earl R. HInz and Jim Howard; $44.95
The Care and Feeding of Sailing Crew - Lin Pardey; $24.95

And now in DVD form from Lin and Larry Pardey (all are $29.95 and available at www.landlpardey.com):
Get Ready to Cruise
Storm Tactics
Get Ready to Cross Oceans

A Port of No Return - Christine L. McKellar; $15.95; www.iUniverse.com
Ghost Sea - Ferenc Máté; $23.95; at major bookstores

Treasure Ship - Dennis M. Powers; $21.95; www.kensingtonbooks.com

The Last Schoonerman - Joe Russell; $24.95; www.nauticalpublishing.com
The Odyssey of Babboon - Stuart Newcomb; $25; www.babboon.net
A Ship's Tale - N. Jay Young; $19.95; www.amazon.com

Blue Horizons: Dispatches from Distant Seas - Beth A. Leonard; $22.95; at major bookstores
9 Years on the 7 Seas: Nor Siglar - Anne E. Brevig; $36.95; www.norsiglar.com
Ten Years Behind the Mast - Fritz Damler; $10.99; www.tinkertown.com
Last Voyage of the Cosmic Muffin - Valerie T. Perez; $18.99; www.valerieperez.com

Sailing with Scoundrels and Kings - John Jourdane; $24.95; www.capehornpress.com
Islands, Oceans and Dreams - Michael Salvaneschi; $29.95; www.cruisingdreamspress.com

A Race for Real Sailors - Keith McLaren; $40; www.godine.com

Life at the Extreme: The Volvo Ocean Race Round the World 2005-2006 - Rob Mundle; $44.95; www.nomadpress.net

It's Your Boat Too: A Woman's Guide to Greater Enjoyment on the Water - Suzanne Giesemann; $14.95; www.paracay.com

The Essentials of Living Aboard a Boat - Mark Nicholas; $17.95; www.paracay.com
Managing the Waterway: Electronic Charts for Marine Navigation (CD-ROM) ­ $24.95; www.managingthewaterway.com

- latitude / ld

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