Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Fourth Bermuda 2010 Training Cruise Departs

CELESTIAL, our IP 440 departed St Georges Harbor, Bermuda today June 30, 2010 at 8:00 AM after two preparation days. The crew members are: Captain Jochen Hoffmann (Virginia), First Mate Jerry Nigro (New York), and student crew members Tom Przybelski (Maryland), Paul Goswitz (Wisconsin), Michael Brown (Pennsylvania) and Michael Poole (Pennsylvania). CELESTIAL will make the passage to Mystic, Connecticut via a non-stop ocean route. The cruise has an estimated distance of 650 miles, and will take approximately 6 days, sailing both day and night. At 8:00 AM this morning, Captain Hoffmann communicated with the school by phone and reported that the crew did an excellent job preparing for departure and that the boat and crew were both in great shape. They had cleared out of Bermuda and were on their way. The accompanying photo shows the Gulf Stream upon departure. More discussion on this soon, as well as weather updates, communication from the crew, and actual progress (SEE COMMENTS BELOW), so please join us! To follow their actual progress on Google Earth, click HERE.

11 comments:

Rita Hanson said...

A word about the time stamp on the google map ...

Skymate reports CELESTIAL's position to us in Coordinated Universal Time, abbreviated UTC. Other terms used to refer to UTC include "Greenwich mean time (GMT)", "Zulu time" and "world time."

Eastern Standard Time (EST) is 5 hours behind UTC. UTC is also on a 24 hour clock. So if the time stamp is 08:20:00 UTC then the EST is 03:20:00 or 3:20 AM. If the timestamp is 20:40:00 UTC, then the EST is 15:40:00 or 3:40 PM.

Rita Hanson said...

Hello sailors and followers! CELESTIAL has just departed for our final Bermuda ocean training cruise for the 2010 season. Captain Jochen Hoffmann is in charge of the vessel for this cruise, and Captain Tom Tursi will be communicating with the crew for the duration of the cruise via Skymate, primarily regarding weather and position.

We can also track their position via the Skymate satellite receiver/transmitter installed on the boat and will post their position on a google map for all to see. Use the link on the main blog post above to see the google map.

Today's position before departure is posted and I'll post a new position usually once a day. Just keep clicking on the same link and it will bring you to the updated map. Zoom out using the control on the top left of the map to see more of the overall picture.

If anyone has trouble with the above link, e-mail me at office@mdschool.com and I will send the full address. I can't post the full address here because it's too long and gets truncated.

robinpa said...

Wonderful to follow the position of our esteemed Vice Commodore of Cruising at Nockamixon Sail Club:-). I wish I could have joined him.

Bon Voyage, Celestial. We will follow your progress:-)

Regards,
Rob

Rita Hanson said...

From: Captain Tom Tursi
To: Celestial
Sent: Thursday, July 01, 2010 1:26 PM
Subject: Wx 7/1

At 00UTC 7/1 a Cold Front extends from 36N70W to 40N61W. At 00UTC 7/2 Low at 34N71W to move East Northeast and produce Southwest winds 35 knots along the cold front. Winds N-NE 15 knots on Friday north of the cold front.

Rita Hanson said...

The picture next to the main blog post above shows the Gulf Stream on 6/30/2010, the day of CELESTIAL's departure from Bermuda. If you click once on the picture, it should open in a new window. Click on it again and it should zoom in. The Gulf Stream crossing is always an interesting tactical part of the passage to and from Bermuda, and for this crossing it is particularly so, and warrants some discussion. Captain Tom Tursi explains:

The purple line is the rhumb line (straight course) for the passage from Bermuda to Mystic. The pink line shows the approximate flow of the Gulf Stream at this point in time. Notice that the rhumb line crosses the Gulf Stream at a point where there is a significant bulge, and just above the bulge there is a clockwise flowing eddy which has spun off from the bulge. (Eddies north of the Gulf Stream tend to flow clockwise, those south of the Gulf Stream tend to flow counterclockwise.) The Eddy itself looks to be about 40 miles in diameter and has a potential of about 4 knots of current.

If CELESTIAL follows the direct course from Bermuda to Mystic as shown by the rhumb line, they will encounter a strong opposing current both in the Gulf Stream crossing and from the clockwise rotation of the eddy since they would pass through the east side of the eddy. By taking a course that brings them further south, they could potentially benefit from the northerly flowing current of the Gulf Stream as well as the strong favorable current on the west side of the eddy.

The Gulf Stream is always slowly changing. Eddies on the north side of the Gulf Steam tend to flow southwest and this one could persist as it is, or move southwest and eventually diminish or collide with the shoreline. Captain Tursi will be watching the Gulf Stream as well as the weather and reporting to CELESTIAL via Skymate. The crew of CELESTIAL will decide how best to handle this tactical challenge. We'll be watching with interest!

Rita Hanson said...

From: Captain Jochen Hoffmann; S/V CELESTIAL
To: Captain Tom Tursi
Sent: Friday, July 02, 2010 10:22 AM
Subject: 7-2

"Position at o9oo 35.05N67.33W NE15-25 C335M S7 Barometer rising. Yesterday strong squalls p.m. Cold front in the evening. Low at 0200, winds 30-35; Speed Over Ground 1 knot under deep reefs. [note: they were hove to*] Crew did great, so did boat. Skies clearing. Thanks for wx update. Jerry/crew say hi."

*For our non-sailing readers, heaving to (past tense hove to) is a way of slowing a sailboat's forward progress by fixing the main sail, foresail and rudder positions so that the forces act against each other, nearly stopping the boat. It is a useful technique since the boat doesn't have to be actively steered allowing the crew to attend other tasks or, as in this case, to safely wait out the strong squalls.

Rita Hanson said...

From: Tom Tursi
To: S/V CELESTIAL
Sent: Friday, July 02, 2010 6:08 PM
Subject: Wx 7-2

"High dominating. Expect N-NE winds Sat, back to NW Sat night, back to SW Sun to Tue all below 20 kt."

Rita Hanson said...

Great to see the Nockamixon Sail Club here!!! Welcome all.

Rita Hanson said...

From: Captain Jochen Hoffmann; S/V CELESTIAL
To: Captain Tom Tursi
Sent: Saturday, July 03, 2010 11:44 AM
Subject: 7-3

"0830 position 36.30N 60.29W. NNE winds 8-12 Seas 5.5 ft. Counter current all night: set 185 drift 1.6. Lots of good celestial fixes, dead reckoning updates. Crew great."

Rita Hanson said...

From: Captain Tom Tursi
To: S/V CELESTIAL
Sent: Sunday, July 04, 2010 11:11 AM
Subject: Wx 7-4

Trough along New England coast. Low 46N67W on 7-4 will move to 39N64W by 7-5. Expect winds SW10-15 today, variable 10 Monday

Rita Hanson said...

CELESTIAL arrived safely at Mystic Shipyard this afternoon at 1430. All is well. For the crew meeting CELESTIAL in Mystic, they are in Slip C25. Thanks for following!