Epic!!!

I’ve dreamed of sailing across the Atlantic Ocean (and/or circumnavigating) since reading the book Dove as a teenager. It’s about a 16 year old boy from California that circumnavigated the globe on a 20 something foot sail boat. It’s something I’ve talked about and prepared for ever since.

I’ve owned small to medium sized sailboats, read countless sailing books and magazines, sailed as much as possible, got my Captain’s License, crewed from New York to Florida and from Bermuda to Newport.

But I grew tired of talking about it (after 35 years). I read a compelling boat advertisement about 10 years ago that said that most people either don’t have the time, the money or the health to make an ocean voyage, so if you find yourself fortunate enough to have all three, you’ve got to go. The time was right for me to make it happen.

There are so many great “blue water” boats, but I decided that a performance (fast) catamaran was for me. I decided on an newly designed Outremer 45.  Outremer has a proven track of building Ocean worthy catamarans. Since she’s built in France,  I would have the opportunity to sail her home, across the Atlantic.

I signed the contract in January, 2014 and was euphoric until two days later when I was up all night trying to figure out how I was going to find the time to sail the boat from France to New York, provision the boat, find a Captain and crew, do adequate sea trials, with family and work responsibilities.

After interviewing a few Captains, I hired Captain Jan Cluistra. Jan has crossed the Atlantic 36 times on Catamarans and his references spoke to his terrific experience, skills and integrity. Catamaran manufacturers hire Jan to deliver their new boats to the United States from South Africa. I felt so lucky to have the opportunity to sail with probably the most accomplished ocean crossing sailor of catamarans on the planet.

Captain Jan and his fantastic crew (Claudia Dengler and Larry Roland) and I left the dock in La Grande Motte, France on November 5, 2014. After stops in Mallorca, Spain, Gibraltar, and Lanzarote, Spain (Canary Islands) we sailed the trade winds west to St. Marteen (Caribbean) and arrived December 10th. (17 days from Lanzarote).

There are so many reasons why the voyage was so wonderful. First the boat was fast and comfortable and seaworthy. Surfing the waves and running with the wind on a catamaran is a pleasure. Second, Jan, Claudia and Larry were so fun to sail with. Jan is a great sailor, a confidence inspiring leader, and a wonderful person for whom I have great respect. Everyone on Davali was passionate about sailing, woke up anytime of night with a “can-do” attitude and enthusiasm, and knew what they were doing…awesome!

The weather…steady favorable winds between 15 and 23 knots, and sunny for all but three days. We hoisted our 150 square meter Code D sail and ripped. Every day brought new adventure including catching fish, seeing whales and dolphins, beautiful sunsets, sky spanning rainbows, swimming, fixing something, downloading weather and learning how to interpret the grib files and surface analysis, reading, playing guitar, using sextant, night watches under incredibly bright stars, lots of shooting stars, huge moon rises, eating Claudia’s great cooking and Larry’s masterful sandwiches, and cranking music.

We enjoyed the latest technology like Delorme two-satellite texting with maps which enabled family and friends to follow us on a map and communicate, satellite phone for calls and weather download, and other modern-day navigation electronics.

Recap: Davali the morning of 11/5/14 Lanzarote departure.

Recap: Davali the morning of 11/23/14 Lanzarote departure.

Tuna jumping in Canaries

Tuna jumping in Canaries

Anitgua, Canary Islands

Anitgua, Canary Islands

Heading West at dusk

Heading West at dusk

Code 0 sailing into sunset

Code 0 sailing into sunset

helm view

helm view

sunset pic sunset code 0 to sunset code d into sunset

Hoisting Code D sail

Hoisting Code D sail

Larry Jan and me

Larry Jan and me

lots of rainbows

lots of rainbows

follow the rainbow

follow the rainbow

whales

Just before they swam under Davali

Just before they swam under Davali

Hiking out on trapeze (Hobie style) to maximize speed and balance

Hiking out on trapeze (Hobie style)

nearing the Caribbean, time for a dip

nearing the Caribbean, time for a dip

beautiful blue water

beautiful blue water

broke out the gennaker for some light wind

broke out the gennaker for some light wind

Catching  a Dorado (mahi mahi)

Catching a Dorado (mahi mahi)

dophin 2 dolphin show

af at bow

 

Captain Jan taking noon sighting

Captain Jan taking noon sighting

At dock in St. Marteen with Larry, Claudia and Jan

At dock in St. Marteen with Larry, Claudia and Jan

Thank you for a wonderful voyage!

About Adam

Author of Safety and Workers' Compensation | To Unleash Productivity and Profits
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22 Responses to Epic!!!

  1. Ralph Robbins says:

    Fabulous trip-good luck

    ________________________________

  2. Marc Wein says:

    Wonderful, congrats! Marc and Melina.

    Sent from my iPad

    >

  3. Fantastic going, well done crew

  4. Fantastic going crew – well done

  5. Philip Gussack says:

    Congratulations!!!!!!! Can’t wait to hear more!

  6. Anonymous says:

    What beautiful pictures. Sounds like you had a wonderful time. I’m glad you finally got to live out your dream voyage. Welcome home.

  7. Bill Donaldson says:

    The voyage of a lifetime. Someday when I see you next I want to sit down and hear everything everything about the trip the boat the technical sailing stuff being in the middle of the ocean that longI am extremely envious I am also so glad that you filled life dream

    Please excuse my thumbed typos and or Siri’s poor response to my dictation.

    Bill Donaldson 24 Montgomery St. Cambridge, MA 02140 H 617-492-8601 C 617-276-4913 E BillDonaldson@Comcast.Net

    >

  8. Anonymous says:

    Buddy, you lived the dream. Not many people have that opportunity. I’m very happy for you and cant wait to see you and Davali next summer…U de capn!

    Andy

  9. Bert Friedlander says:

    Great writing about the trip

  10. Robert Horowitz says:

    Congratulations!!!

  11. Michael Finn says:

    What a great post congratulations – I did same trip on my monohull j160 in 2009 and we left lanzarite little early before trades set in . We ended up going close to cape verdes ( (to get fuel) but trades filled in so onto Guadeloupe – by time we got there we we out of rum and beer and down to last few onions and granola bars . It’s wonderful being out there- I hope to do again michael finn

    Sent from my iPhone

    >

  12. Anonymous says:

    Adam- Congratulations on fulfilling a life long dream! The Big A, rocks!

  13. Bob Ryan says:

    Adam- Congratulations on fulfilling your life long dream! The Big A rocks! BOB

  14. Michael Koren says:

    The Four Winds rolled you safely home!! Well done Captain Adam…I look forward to hearing all about you trip. Maybe you should host a “talk” one night at Opus and you can captivate us with your stories!!

  15. Anonymous says:

    Cap’t Yic, so proud of you, u dreamed the dream and made it happen! Much love and can’t wait to sail out with you soon!

  16. Anonymous says:

    Congrats Adam!!! Now you have to come up with a new dream to fulfill. Can’t wait to hear all about your adventure across the ocean. Hard to believe. Your pictures are beautiful.

  17. theroseofyork@aol.com says:

    Hey Adam, Congratulations I have been thinking of you the last few weeks. Lets get together when you get home.The boat looks sweet ! Dick

    Best Regards,

    Richard Sattler Cell: 860.938.7182

  18. Sallye says:

    Beautiful post and an extraordinary experience. it is exciting just to look at the photos and read the descriptions. I can’t wait to hear the joy in your voice as you talk about it! Welcome home. We all love you! Sallye

  19. Robert Longo says:

    Congratulations Adam, you are truly an inspiration!
    I have many questions to ask about the voyage.. Can’t wait..see you soon.

  20. Matthieu says:

    Always a great satisfaction to fullfill one’s dream… Congrats Captain ! Glad you enjoyed.

  21. Jill Friedlander Robinson says:

    I seem to have some vague recollection of Dove… Did you say we were related? Well thanks for this magnificent post, brother. I am afraid we can’t allow you to get away with this appetizer as a testimony. Here here to setting up a mike at a dinner so all of us landlubbers and couch potatoes who witnessed various portions of your long hawl can actually experience second hand — or even first hand if you are a reeeaaallly good storyteller — Addie’s adventures on the deep blue sea. And I think I speak for everyone when I say that the finest moment was when Wendy and the Lost Boys cried out: “Land HO Maytee!!”

  22. Joe Dillard says:

    Adam: I am considering bringing a 45 back across the Atlantic, then eventually to my home port of Seattle. Can I ask you some questions via private email or phone? I have read your blog and watched the videos. I am struggling deciding between a Chris White Atlantic 42 and the new Outremer.

    Thanks,

    Joseph Dillard

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