CHANGES With reports this month on the second of Celebrate's circumnavigations, Alembic's cruise of both fun and compassion, and a lesson on family dynamics aboard Tuwamish. There are reports on both the 17th annual Zihua SailFest and the 2nd annual Barra Festival. And the usual batch of Cruise Notes.
Charlie and Cathy Simon have put more than 40,000 miles under 'Celebrate's keel since 2014.
aboard their Taswell 58, Celebrate. But that was only one leg of an 11-month, 16,000-mile circumnavigation of the North American continent. They crossed their outbound track off Fort Lauderdale on February 23 to tie that knot. Celebrate is only the 15th known boat to have completed such a passage. The Simons are in even rarer company now, since their résumé also includes a Colored lines show 'Celebrate's '14-'15 world and '17-'18 North American circumnavigations.
'regular' circumnavigation. Between 201415, they completed a 13-month, 26,000mile World ARC. (Doing both a world and North American circumnavigation is so rare, we couldn't even find stats. It may be one of the first.) In total, since 2014, they've visited 16 countries on five continents, sailed most of the world's oceans and many of its seas, and put more than 40,000 miles under Celebrate's keel. Celebrate herself is a Bill Dixon design, built by the highly regarded Tashing yard in Taiwan in 2003. The design features a long Scheel keel, beefy skeg-hung rudder, tons of storage, and accommodations for up to eight crew. The latter detail came in handy for parts of the NA circumnavigation. Although the boat is set up for easy doublehanding, Charlie and Cathy had six total aboard for the NWP, and four (themselves included) to and through Panama. They sailed the first leg (Fort Lauderdale to Annapolis) and last leg (Panama to Fort Lauderdale) themselves. Of the many cool gadgets aboard, one of the coolest to us was their masthead camera. Though designed as a security camera, it turned out to be a valuable extra set of eyes that could 'see' over the tops of ice and spot pathways not visible from deck. We're thinking a similar setup could prove equally valuable when threading your way through reefs in more tropical climes. As they noted in November's Changes, the Simons considered the 3,300-mile East-West Northwest Passage much more difficult than the ARC, mostly because of the unpredictable movement of the ice floes and the frequent pea soup fog formed by them. (Compasses don't work that far north, either — fortunately, GPS does.) What they didn't mention then is that, after they consulted with Victor Wejer, an Ocean Cruising Club Northwest Passage specialist, he named a Tasmanian Islands channel "Charlie's Channel" after Simon, its first known user. After completing the NWP in September, Charlie and Cathy made a 1,300-mile dash from Alaska south to San Diego, to take part in last year's Baja HaCELEBRATE
Celebrate — Taswell 58 Charlie and Cathy Simon Tying Another Knot Spokane, WA When we last visited Charlie and Cathy Simon in the November '17 Changes, they had just completed a Northwest Passage
Ha, which started on October 29. After that came a Panama Canal transit, followed by the 'homestretch' across the Caribbean to Florida. On the ARC, the Simons' favorite stops included the Galapagos, a visit to an active volcano on Vanuatu, and a safari in Africa. When asked about the highlights for the NA circumnavigation, Charlie is unequivocal about his favorite: "Everyone should visit Disko Bay in Greenland. Although we were aboard our boat, there is a regular air service and tours to see the glaciers calving icebergs, which is a truly awesome experience," he says. "The ice extends out into the bay about five miles until tidal and other stresses are great enough to crack off the 'toe' of the glacier. Some of the bergs are huge,
The April 2018 issue of the West's premier sailing and marine magazine.