Another bird-nerd critter post! Both Seth and I have soft spots for goofy-looking birds and they don’t get much goofier than auklets. On our sail to the Arctic in 2015, we spent several days on St Paul island in the central Bering Sea, binoculars and cameras trained on cliffs full of nesting auklets. It was a toss-up for my favorite, but the Least Auklet was certainly a contender. Continue reading
Some publication news for the summer! In the June/July issue, Cruising World magazine came out with my feature article about our 2015 voyage to the Alaskan Arctic. As usual, it was good fun to see it in print, and now it’s online on Cruising World‘s site. Our partner ZEAL Optics is also sharing a taste of it on their blog here. Hope you enjoy!
Also this summer, Classic Boat magazine in the UK ran a piece I wrote about the historic steamboats of Lake Geneva in Switzerland. The article is also now online, here. These 100-year-old (and older) paddle-wheel boats still ply the lake throughout summer and fall, taking passengers from one city to another, or on dinner or lunch cruises. The boats have a long, varied history, including the assassination of Empress Elisabeth of Austria and use by spies in World War I. If any of my readers plan to visit Geneva, a ticket on one of these gems is only a few francs and well worth it!
This video covers our first passage north in the Bering Sea, to the windswept but wildlife-rich Pribilof Islands. We were thrilled to get some great footage of puffins and fur seals, and really enjoyed celebrating Fourth of July in what’s got to be one of the world’s coldest ball-fields!
A few weeks ago, we were honored to be asked for an interview by Fabio at the Psychology of Sailing website, whose focus is how sailing and psychology can influence each other and promote mental health and well being, as well as a sense of purpose in life. Our interview just got posted yesterday, and you can read it here. I hope you enjoy it as much as we enjoyed answering Fabio’s thoughtful questions! http://www.psychologyofsailing.com/outdoor_life_interview/
We’ve made the foray into videos! And Cruising World magazine has picked them up for their website! They’ve posted the first two Arctic Voyage videos so far here, and they’ll roll out one episode per month hereafter.
A big thank-you goes out to our amazing friends Chris and Jess Bray for persuading us to start taking footage in 2015 (you guys are right – it’s super fun!) and to our awesome friend Jeff for getting me into editing!
So here’s our first attempt – a short “trailer” that gives some context to our Arctic Voyage episodes:
Hope you enjoy! And feel free to sign up for our Gone Floatabout YouTube channel where we’ll post the episodes after they’re live on Cruising World‘s site!
Ellen & Seth
Seth and I were recently nominated by a fellow blogger for the Sunshine Blogger Award -thank you, Diana! Diana writes Handstands Around the World – about hiking, travel, and the outdoors. Diana is a former gymnast, hence the handstands and the name of her site. She has great pictures of the Mountain West and beyond!
What’s the Sunshine Blogger Award? It’s kind of like a chain letter… (did that date me?) given to bloggers by other bloggers who are “positive, creative, and inspiring”. We’ve really enjoyed other sailing and non-sailing blogs since we started writing Gone Floatabout, so it’s wonderful to know that others have enjoyed our site!
Here are our answers to Diana’s questions:
With repairs complete, we departed Dutch Harbor/Unalaska on June 26 for the big, beautiful Alaska Peninsula. The first challenge was to sail between the Aleutians out from the Bering Sea and back into the Pacific. The passes between the islands are notoriously rough, with tidal currents running strong. On our way into the Bering in 2014 we had used Akutan Pass and had encountered a 3-knot favorable current at the supposed slack tide. We’d had bumpy conditions (contrary wind – wind against current) but nothing bad, and the 3-knot boost made it fast. This time things went even better! We chose the smaller Unalga Pass and had glassy calm seas despite a 2-knot current with us. There was thick fog, but otherwise it was very pleasant.