• 6th July 2010 - By greg
    Despite not accomplishing what we had set to do which was to spend a week at sea, I’ve been having a nice time anyhow. I really enjoy spending a day on the water pedaling WiTHiN into the swells and exploring the westcoast area. It feels cool to be so self-contained. I can cook (have enough meals for 10 days on board), sleep (VERY comfortable in the cabin – with the gentle rocking when tied to the dock, I sleep like a rock), I can watch movies and TV shows on my iPod, listen to audio books or music, check the weather forecast on the VHF radio, check the location of the other boats in the area with the AIS plotter, see my speed and route on the GPS, relax while pedaling by using the auto pilot, trim out any unwanted heel due to wind with the flick of a switch to shift the weight of my batteries from side to side, make fresh water to drink or cook with the electric desal, and of course, send and receive email with my sat phone. All powered by my awesome Goal 0 solar panels. Stat
    e of the art adventure!I spent yesterday morning pedaling WiTHiN up and down the Ucluelet inlet and spending as much time in the building seas and wind outside the protection of the inlet as possible. When the winds picked up substantially, I headed back to our dock, and Clive and I went sailing instead. I didn’t like it at all and frankly would rather have been in WiTHiN than Theodora. Clive is a very competent sailer and Theodora is a really capable little offshore yacht. I just really felt out of my element. I wouldn’t have enjoyed it much better in WiTHiN, but at least I am accustomed to her, and I am in charge.

    Seas at the time of our sail were probably only 2.5 to 3 meters and the wind was picking up to 25 knots. For most offshore sailers this would be classified as GREAT sailing weather, but for this land lubber, a most frightening experience.

    It was then that I realized that maybe I’m just not cut out for this kind of thing. Excitement to me is cycling a human powered vehicle around a 1/4 mile race track for 24 hours non-stop. Or trail running for 5 hours. I know – danger is my middle name – right?

    We headed back to our dock and went for a hike. I attached a shot of the sea taken from our hike during the gale that afternoon.

    This morning after an awesome sleep in the cozy cabin of WiTHiN, I checked the forecast which was still warning of more gale force winds for southern Vancouver Island West. So, I spent the entire day tooling up and down the inlet and into the 1.5 to 2 meter swells. The sun was shining, it was warm and CALM and the winds never did pick up at all.

    The forecast is calling for some calmer weather tomorrow morning, so Clive and I are thinking about getting up early and headling out to the Broken Island chain which is right next door – about 3 or 4 hour pedal away from here. BI is an amazing place – I have kayaked there with my family and friends a couple of times. I think we will spend a day or two exploring the islands, then head back across the channel to Ucee and pack up. Clive is sailing on to Alaska. He is the true adventurer here.

    I’m really enjoying this despite my realization that this whole ocean crossing dream just might not be for me. The west coast of Vancouver Island is amazingly beautiful and there is no better way of seeing it – no better way of EXPERIENCING it – than through the windows of the worlds coolest human powered boat. I do not regret spending a single penny or minute of work building WiTHiN, for she has shown me parts of this world few get to see. As I type this in my cabin, WiTHiN is rocking back and forth and a harbour seal has popped his head up to check me out. When I was in my immersion suit under the water yesterday removing the T rudder addition, a bright pink jelly fish floated right in front of my face. The trip up the inside passage with Bryon was absolutely incredible – long days turning the pedals, orcas, currents – breathtaking scenery. Fighting the storm force winds on OK lake while traveling over 200 km in 4 days under my own power was also pretty darned cool. So many
    amazing moments – made 200% better by being able to share it with you. Thank you for that!

    This adventure isn’t over though. I hope to send another report tomorrow from the beautiful broken islands.

    Greg

    —————————–
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  • 3 Comments to “Sea trials day 3 report”

    • Russell Moore on July 6, 2010

      This adventure was always of your own making, and if you feel that you would be putting your life at risk, and you want to abort the trip,then that is your choice Greg.
      It sometimes takes more guts to say no, than to say yes, and plough on head first into trouble.
      I look forward to hearing all about your future plans, no matter what they are.

      Good luck.

      Russell

    • Tom Lynch on July 7, 2010

      Hi Gregg,

      I peek in on you once in a while and see how your doing. You may remember I expressed concern that your boat is too narrow a beam and if you had a problem at sea with the hull full of water, you may not be able to self-rescue…

      I am proud of you being honest with yourself and everyone that maybe this expedition isn’t what you thought it would be….discretion is the better part of valor…you have a wonderful family and wonderful opportunities ahead to help people improve their lives through your inspiring efforts in other areas.

      A thought might be you retrofit a more conventional oceanrowing boat that would sustain you through the toughest seas (Erden Eruc stayed at our house in Guerneville, Ca. for five weeks waiting for the right offshore winds…then rowed the Pacific, being at sea for over 300 days1!). I think you would do incredibley well with a standard oceanrowing boat with pedal power.

      Best regards to You, Your family and Canada!!

      Tom Lynch
      American Director
      Ocean Rowing Society

      p.s. A favorite quote, “Wisdom is the sum of all our failures.”

    • Allen Rees on August 3, 2010

      Hello Greg,

      Not only do I respect your decision to possibly abandon this voyage, I strongly (read very strongly!) encourage you to do so. Your vision was borne of an adventurous soul and your success was to pull all the pieces together to make it happen. Now, your continued success rests with your decision to let go of this one.

      You have far more to achieve in the years that lie ahead; do not risk your life with this one. The open ocean is no place to peddle this craft…abandon it now and save yourself for all that you have left to do. There are very few men or women, in any generation, who have your spirit and drive for adventure and accomplishment – live on so that you may continue to push the boundaries of human endurance.

      Could you peddle a boat to Hawaii? Absolutely. Time and again, you have proven that you have what it takes, both physiologically and psychologically, to accomplish the task. But is WITHiN that boat? No, it is not. Do not risk your life in an unsound boat to prove what you, and those who follow your accomplishments, already know.

      All the best,
      Allen


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