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Learning By Doing

Since we last reported on 30-year-old Justin Hoye-House in the April issue of Latitude 38, he’s come a long way — literally — having successfully singlehanded from Mexico to French Polynesia during his first year of offshore sailing.

Justin snaps a GoPro selfie during a dive session with new cruising friends.

© 2015 Justin Hoye-House

As regular readers may recall, within weeks of being struck by the fantasy of sailing around the world, Justin bought a vintage 1966 Alberg 30 in Vancouver, BC, for that purpose, despite the fact that he’d sailed fewer than a dozen times in his whole life. A year and a half later he set off for Mexico aboard Antares II with a couple of buddies, a trip that was essentially a trial by fire for the young adventurer. He reported that at one point he was so seasick he couldn’t stand up.

But sailing, of course, is an experiential endeavor: The more you do it, the better you get at it. Reading Justin’s responses to our Pacific Puddle Jump survey (collected for a PPJ Recap article in the September Latitude), it’s obvious that the young skipper has become a confident offshore sailor: "My highest points were those days when the sails were set just right and I sailed Antares fast and hard down the waves, with the windvane doing all the work. I had a very rewarding experience running three sails — main, symmetrical spinnaker, and yankee — on a broad/beam reach and had lines running everywhere, with the windvane steering almost 12 hours. As a new sailor it gave me some great confidence that I knew what I was doing, especially on my own."

Needless to say, the young Oregon native was thrilled and relieved to make landfall at Taiohae Bay, Nuku Hiva after 26 days alone at sea: "When I first got to land I started shaking from excitement and almost couldn’t walk for a good half hour!"

Additional stats from Antares II:
• miles logged: 3,384
• longitude of equator crossing: 122W
• engine hours for propulsion: 30 hrs
• best 24-hour mileage: 164 nm
• worst 24-hour mileage: 40 nm
• highest wind speed (gusts): 50 kts
• number of fish caught: 5 tuna

Look for our complete PPJ Recap in September’s Latitude. You’ll find recaps and photos of previous years at the PPJ website

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