Day 648 [July 12/10 JST] -- Homeward bound

Today's Report
July 12/10 0800 JST 

Position:  20°16'N, 159°40'W

Remaining distance to Yokohama finish:  13.0%

After an evening celebratory meal with his volunteer Hawaii Team, Saito-san left the dock at 0900 Saturday morning, seen off by Ed Abbot and Scott Gilbert in their boats, and accompanied briefly by Ed Cooper in a last moment check of boat operation.

Here are the reports given by Scott and Ed:

The departure today at 0900 from the Keehi dock was filled with excitement and smooth sailing.  Systems worked well and Ed has pictures to follow up with. I am sure you will hear more from the Hawaii team!! Save some small canvas with his signature for us in the Aloha State of Mind.

-- Scott

Saito-san is finally on his way. Escorted out to sea by Scott's boat and mine. With Dave aboard as crew he left the dock on schedule at 9am. A little drama offshore when he thought the autopilot had packed up. But shortly he told me all was well, came about, and soon he was hull down and well on his way.

Kimmy and I both miss our sunset dinners with him on my boat, but are happy knowing he's finally on the final leg of his journey and homeward bound.


Dave subsequently crossed to one of the other vessels, after which Saito-san was again officially "legal" as a single-handed sailor. Thus the voyage continues under the requirement that there be no crew aboard during any portion of the continuation (i.e., forward progress) of the circumnavigation. In this instance, that's the point at which assistance was given to bring NBSDIII into Keehi Marina while her engine was inoperable.  

Saito-san reports all systems are working well. To ease strain on the genoa, mast, and rigging, he intends to perform quite large tacking maneuvers, running at a slight angle to the following wind in order to keep the genoa full. If the winds get too far "behind," the genoa is blanketed by the main and will tend to constantly fill and unfill, putting heavy "slamming" stresses on the sail and rigging. There is also the potential for a dangerous uncontrolled jibe.

This downwind sailing strategy will require controlled jibing (passing the stern through the eye of the following wind) at certain intervals of approximately 24 hours. That interval could be more or less depending on wind direction. The more closely the plotted rhumbline can be followed, the better the distance made good. 

Ideally he'd like the wind from the ENE, rather than directly from E, for most favorable running along the East tradewinds. For now, ENE seems to be fairly constant although, at 10 - 13 kts, the winds are a bit weaker than desired. Most favorable will be steady ENE (or, even better, NNE) winds within a range of 12 -20 kts. 

Distance in last 24 hours: 117 nm over ground / 100 nm DMG
Total distance completed: 24,592 nm
To Yokohama: 3,700 nm
To Mid WP1: 1,589 nm
Heading: 270°
Reported boat speed: 5.0 kts
Average boat speed: 4.2 kts
Average daily DMG over last 1 day: 4.2 nm 
Weather: Partly cloudy, passing squalls
Temperature: 24.0° C
Barometer: 1014 hPa 
Wind (from): 12-18 kts NNE, expected to be 10-13 kts mostly ENE over next 19 hrs
Waves: 2.0 m
Current (from): Mixed at 0.4 kts (mostly unfavorable)
Sails: Genoa 100%, staysail 0%, mainsail 3-pt reef

Position Map