Back on the water with my new Hughes Columbia
Good news! If you were a regular reader of our blog during our trans-Atlantic crossing, you'll probably recall all the problems we had with our inReach satellite communicator. Seems it worked part time at best. I just got a full refund for the In-Reach from the good people at 'Trailhead' in Kingston.
Even more good news! I did some shopping and bought another boat. The boat is a 1981 Hughes Columbia 8.3. She's 27 feet long with a beam (width) slightly over 9 feet. Good interior arrangement for cruising and an enclosed head (toilet). There is a 3-cylinder Yanmar diesel engine that was recently rebuilt. It's not a registered vessel, so the name is not 'legal' as was Long Reach. It is a licenced vessel with a number. The name on the transom is 'Swoosh' or 'Swooch' or something like that. I'm thinking of calling her 'Shanty II'. It's a cruising sailboat, a bit smaller than Long Reach.
Wayne and I are heading to Burlington, Ontario tomorrow to sail it home to Ile Perrot. This may take 2 weeks. If we see anything interesting, we'll send photos.
The Voyage of Long Reach: Trip Epilogue
The thought of sailing away to a far-off land has universal appeal to those with an affinity for water. It's unfortunate that there are many sailboats around that represent the abandoned dreams of would-be voyagers. While 'shopping', I have seen home-built blue water craft for sale unfinished and 'manufactured' boats on which owners never got to live their dream.
I am one of the lucky ones. With the help of my good friend Wayne, the support of family and friends (especially Jess and Ron), and with the encouragement of my wife Donna, I actually sailed across the Atlantic. It wasn't always easy, but it was the greatest challenge I have ever met and the feeling of accomplishment was a powerful one when we landed in Portugal. Wayne and I have shared an adventure that few others will ever experience.
Our original plan (to return via Madeira and the Canary Islands, through the Caribbean and back to Montreal by way of New York, the Erie Canal and Lake Ontario) would have seen us on the water for another five-month stretch starting January. After our crossing, we thought that another five months would have been too long to be away from family. I'm glad we agreed and were flexible enough to change our plans. We sold the boat in Portugal, again with the help of new-found friend, Ricardo.
I'd like to thank everyone who was involved in the project in one way or another. On behalf of everyone who enjoyed following us via this website, I'd like to thank Ron for making that possible.
Finally, I will be forever grateful to Donna for all her efforts toward the project. She was with me when we worked for four years on my first dream of crossing (back in the eighties). She worked tirelessly during the refit, renovation and preparation of Long Reach, and during the crossing, she was up at 05:30 every morning working on the weather routing for us.
I am truly blessed.
An Interview with the Crew of Long Reach
Wayne Adams and Gordon Applebee have finished their crossing the Atlantic Ocean aboard their Alberg 29 sailboat, Long Reach. The crew talk candidly about the trip: their high points and low points of sailing across the Atlantic; the expected and the unexpected; and the big question everyone is asking "Why did they decide to pack it in early."
- You guys took a 29-foot sailboat from Montreal to Europe. Why?
- How long did it take?
- How did you two get along?
- You were away from families for a long time. Was it difficult?
(W) I Wanted to start off retirement with a good challenging project and when this came up, I was sold.
(G) It was a personal challenge that I have been considering for a long time and, Like Wayne, I saw it as a good retirement project.
(G) The first part, from Montreal to Ossining, NY, took 36 days. The first crossing attempt was 12 days. The crossing to the Azores was 35 days and Azores to Portugal took another 14 days. 97 days in all.
(W) We got along well. It took some time to get used to different personalities, but we got along well.
(G) We had ups and downs, but mostly ‘ups’. It was great travelling with Wayne.
(W) It’s always hard to be away from loved ones for a period of time. I often found myself thinking of my family, particularly during night watches.
(G) I also found it difficult. There were times I wished I were home. I thought it would be easier than it was.
More info about the trip...
Wayne Adams or Gordon Applebee. So who's the admiral & who's the deckhand?>> Find out about the crew
See the map and photos from the first leg of our trip to Ossining, New York.>> The map and photos
Thanks to all the special people who are helping make this trip possible.>> Find out who
The boys had time to shoot a few short videos on their Atlantic crossing.>> Check 'em out here