Welcome to Ocean Vagabonds! We are a family of nine who became disillusioned with the “American Dream”, sold everything, bought a sailboat and sailed her to Alaska. We are now working to outfit our boat Nadejda so that we can see where the wind leads us. We hope you enjoy our story as it unfolds.
Last year, in yet another attempt to head south (let see I guess that made try number two) we discovered that our hydraulic steering ram was quite under sized and pretty much on it’s last leg. As we reached the southern part of Hecate Strait where it meets up with the Queen Charlotte sound we encountered SOUS (Seas of Unusual Size), now we could not see these monsters as it was completely dark so I believe some embellishment is allowed in such circumstances. At the time we were motoring into the wind as we watched our knot meter slowly creep to zero, it was relatively calm as we climbing these waves for up to a minute before falling off the other side three times (at least this part was consistent), burying our bow each time we dropped. Now while all this was going on I discovered that the rudder which was being loaded by the heavy seas could not be steered against them, to make matters worse the steering ram began to leak hydraulic fluid! It was time to turn and run for the inside passage and calmer waters. Read More
Unfortunately we have spent most of our life aboard Nadejda putting off projects that we want to complete when the boat is hauled out (preferably somewhere warm and dry) or when we can invest the money to do it right. Each year would find us making plans to go somewhere to achieve just that, but in the end they never came to fruition. Realization hit late this summer… that day my never come. Were we going to sacrifice the boat for ideal conditions? To save her we were going to have to work with what we had; sporadic sunny days in one of the wettest parts of the country, with our boat in the water, and putting money into the necessary systems, making do with the rest. Read More
Last Wednesday was Dad’s day off and we decided to spend the day at the beach! While we stayed at the boat and did our chores and Mom washed laundry, Dad went to the store and ran some errands. When he returned we packed everything up, stacked it in a dock cart and set off! We drove north to Refuge Cove (our favorite beach), and found a secluded spot to eat lunch and play. Dad built up a fire while the rest of us went to explore the beach (since we had not been to this particular part of Refuge Cove yet), the younger ones built a sand castle down by the water. Some big Bull Kelp had washed ashore and we made them into trumpets, all you have to do is cut off the tail of it so the tube is big enough to blow into, then you cut off the top, as shown in the picture! Caleb, during all this, had been sitting under a tree reading his book, the girls had a lot of fun playing the Kelp Horns for him!:) Dad soon called us and told us lunch was ready, we all ran up, grabbed a stick, a hot dog and started roasting them; as we ate our lunch, we sat around the fire and talked. Soon afterward we all went down to the water, which had risen considerably since we had first arrived, and Anna asked us to race with her along the beach, we all agreed happily! As we raced, we had to run into the water some of the way since the beach had disappeared, by the time we got back we were all soaked. We had accidentally left our swim suits at the boat, so everybody went swimming in their clothes, which was, by the way, great fun! We swam while Mom and Dad rested on the beach with Caleb, we went a ways out and dived down to pick sea weed off the rocks, when we were tired we floated on our backs and rested. While we were swimming, the little boys were playing on the beach, they were trying to push a log into the water, after a lot of pushing and shoving they finally got it floating. They floated it out a few feet and then sat on it while the waves pushed it back up onto the sand. When we finished swimming we went and gathered around the fire to dry off, we talked with Mom and Dad, and they said we were crazy for swimming in our clothes; Imagine that! While we protested, Dad changed the topic and said he noticed a lot of Huckleberry bushes that were loaded with fruit and that if we picked enough we could make some pancakes on his next day off. We didn’t need to be told twice! We scoured the woods around where we were, and filled the container that we had till it was full. While we were berry hunting, Mom cleaned up the food and gathering everything into bags and packs. It was time to go, we helped haul everything into the car, once that was done we found our seats and watched as the beach disappeared. Well, at least we had pancakes to look forward too!