We were sailing so well! …until. We’d just put in a reef and Alex commented that we need to tighten the supporting cheeks on the rudder because it felt loose. There was no sound when it broke, but a definite realization that something was amiss. Alex tried steering with an oar and we tried steering with the storm sail with no luck. We called Daniel Evans, the R2AK race boss and reported. He told us to call the Canadian coast guard and alert them of our status. Within a few minutes the coasties sent out a general alert and several private, commercial, and a naval vessel responded. We were able to contact a private towing vessel via cell phone while a private fishing vessel circled nearby. A naval ship arrived about the same time as the tow boat. It was a pretty wild ride back to shore. 20+ knot winds and 2-3 foot breaking waves. We were prepared which made the difference: phone numbers programmed into phone, wet weather gear, life jackets, and tethers on, fully charged VHF radio, and storm jib set. We were expecting good winds and we were doing pretty well until then. Twenty+ knots is manageable in Bobbles. We’ll beef up the components and perhaps try again next year. M

Comments are closed.