Burial at Sea – the first minor casualty (by Conrad)



Our first casualty struck 15 hours into the trip. Winds had remained calm as we crossed the Gulf Stream which was both fortunate and appreciated as that can be a nasty piece of water in certain circumstances. As darkness fell the forecast materialized and we began to beat into 22-27 knots of wind and 6ft swells on the nose. BUMPY.

I was on watch alone at 3 am when I noticed something white leaping around on the trampoline (the netting that spans the two hulls at the front of the boat). Peering through the spray and pounding waves I could see in the pounding our (new!) surfboard was beginning to work itself loose from its home lashed beneath a sail bag. Jumping into action and determined to be the heroic savior of our surfboard I opened the hatch and began to run forward with the idea of tackling the board like a flying squirrel. For context, when its blowing 27 knots with 6 foot seas and you are driving into it at 8 knots it feels as if you are standing on the hood of your car moving at 40 miles an hour over 6 foot speed bumps. Now imagine you are standing on top of that car trying to wrestle a surfboard in the wind…

I was about 4 steps into this maneuver when it occurred to me that everyone else was asleep and this surfboard was probably going to wreck me even if I did get ahold of it. If it knocked me overboard no one would figure it out for another two hours when the watch changed. Discretion being the better part of valor I scrambled back downstairs to wake up Andrew. After a quick leg shake for Andrew I dashed back upstairs and into the wind and swell just in time for the board to cut loose, cartwheel up and back past my face at 30 miles per hour and off into the darkness behind us.

Goodbye new friend we hardly knew ye…

Based on the wind and Gulf Stream I believe our surfboard will make landfall somewhere in South Carolina. I hope someone finds it and gives it lots of love =)

Meagan JonesComment