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ARC + Life

Getting ready!!! We will be setting sail on Sunday for the first 800 mile leg across the Atlantic to the Cape Verde Islands, and whenever a big passage is coming up we naturally have a lot of preparation. There seems to be an ever growing list of things to accomplish. This is especially the case since we entered in the ARC+ rally, so the departure date is not flexible as when we set off on our own. So here's a day in the "Life" of ARC+ aboard Distant Shores II.


Today we are replacing our lifelines! On the passage from Madeira we noticed one of the lower lines were nearly broken where it went through the stanchion. Goes to show - you need to look quite carefully at the hidden parts - in this case probably weakened when we hung a fender on that point on a very "swelly" day in Madeira's Funchal marina.

We are replacing all the lifelines and also changing them. The picture shows our 4mm lower which we will replace with the same spec. But the uppers will be replaced with 5mm wire for more strength (they were also 4mm)


Our new liferaft is arriving today, so we will have to fit it to the bracket on the stern rail. It might fit easily (haha that never seems to happen :-) but you never know. It is an Ocean Safety "Ocean ISO9650" six person liferaft.


Checking over our flares and emergency equipment… good idea to reread the instructions for the flares as they are often not at all intuitive.


The ARC has a requirement that lifejackets be fitted with face shields, so we will pack these into the lifejackets… very fashionable?

Test Sailing

Today we got off the dock and got the crew out for a test sail. Longtime Maltese friend Anthony (racing sailor and expert rigger) was happy at the helm getting the feel of Distant Shores II.
tony test sailing
With light following winds forecast for the first leg to Cabo Verde Islands we wanted to test our new downwind rig. The main is out to starboard with a preventer. The genoa is out on our carbon pole. We wanted to also use our smaller jib out to starboard so we put a new fitting on the boom so we could use a snatch block and run a temporary sheet - essentially using the main boom as a pole to hold the jib out. Working great!!
test flying everything rig
I think we'll get to use this rig coming up!! Happy Skipper!!
test sail
Last night was the ARC Gala party as ARC-Plus is setting off on Sunday, and ARC boats are arriving now setting off in 2 weeks. Las Palmas put on a great party, even with dancing girls and stage acts - seen here posing with their "costumes" yes thats just paint!
body paint
Happy crew nearly ready to go!
ARC crew 2015
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