San Francisco Bay 1985


SOP on May 16

Hawaii to Victoria 1990

24 days

Repairs Hilo

PV to Hilo 28 days

SFO to Baja 1988

I sailed from San Francisco to San Diego with stops at Morrow Bay and a few other places, and arrived for the Christmas holiday at the San Diego Yacht Club. In the new Year I sailed to Cabo San Lucas a stops at Bodega Bay to refuel. I arrived at Cabo and med moored to the wall. In those days Cabo was pretty basic.  Several boats hung out here for a few months. I moved on to Puerto Vallarta to a marina at Nuevo Vallarta for a couple of years on and off with short trips back home every six months. Eventually I set off May 10th 1990 for Hilo Hawaii and after five days out encountered hurricane Alma a cat 1 hurricane just south of us.


Luckily Alma veered left, but we didn’t know that until after the fact. In those days I got no weather fax data over the radio, and there was no GPS, so all movements of the hurricane were relayed to us by Ham radio. I high tailed it to colder water further North to get out of the way. Alma swung left and paralleled my course for a couple of days.I had some heavy weather with no sun for a week, and winds to about 30 kts from behind. I rode the swells for almost three days and made good time towards Hilo. I was exhausted.

The boat did a yeoman job of avoiding the biggest waves, and very few actually broke aboard. The wind vane handled it all.

The only damage was to the engine where the exhaust system had been shaken apart due to the motion which allowed sea water into the engine. In the thrashing around of the boat in the swells I crawled under the sink unit to get to the engine drain plug. I pulled out the spark plugs and ran oil into the cylinders. The engine was U/S for the rest of the trip. I had only small solar panels then, so we hadn’t enough power to run much equipment.

When I got to Hilo, I was becalmed in the lee of the mountain,
and the current threatened to drive me onto the reef. I pulled offshore to think it over. A small yacht appeared and hugged the shore further north, getting a land breeze, and I did the same and entered Hilo outer harbor to anchor and wait for a tow in. It arrived five hours later, and I entered Hilo and checked in.
That’s when I decided to make engine access better, and sawed a big hole in the cockpit floor so the engine repair man could take the head off.
We installed new valve seats, cleaned the valves and repaired the exhaust system. After that it ran like a champ and I had power to burn,

I taped down an acrylic cover to the engine hatchway and sailed 2400 miles to Victoria, BC.


The long voyage 6900nm

C&C 33 3/4ton custom by Erich Bruckmann 1974

The long voyage 6900nm


Hurricane Alma 5/16/1990

winds 75 kts