Journey to Santa Barbara

Isabel Burnham By

Journey to Santa Barbara

So, as previously reported, as we have lost the ability to charge both of our batteries, we are heading to Santa Barbara. We have good conditions and are making our way there with an estimated arrival time of Tuesday morning. Tony is meeting us there and we hope to be able to quickly remedy the problems with Doris and head back on our way. It is very frustrating for us to be diverted and doubtless it will be difficult to get back on the boat to restart for Hawaii, but it was the only realistic and safe option for us and we are all trying to take it in our stride and are in good spirits.

It has helped that we have had a few days of much better weather. We are rowing 24-7 two hours on two hours off now and settling into the sleep pattern. Last night’s night shifts were easier than some of the previous ones. We were less tired and the moon (nearly full) was peeping through occasionally and turning the water silver. Today we finally have sunshine. Our Crewsaver wet weather gear has come off for the first time since we left San Francisco! The Pacific is as flat as a mill pond. This morning we rowed through blankets of jelly fish and Laura and Nat were rowing with dolphins very close to the boat. Ems and I saw a pod of about 20 jumping on the horizon. We all keep seeing a mysterious fin flopping around above the water. It’s attached to something quite big, but it’s not coming close enough for us to see what. We think it might be a basking shark.

Now that we’re heading for land, we’ve started to all imagine what it will be like to step off the boat, shower and what we want to eat! I can only imagine how exciting it will be to be making those plans again next time when we are approaching Hawaii.



  1. If the fin you are seeing is big and floppy then it is an orca (killer whale) as shark fins, even the big ones (GW) are all solid. Hope this helps. Wishing you all God speed from the British in El Centre, Califirnia(there are about 200 of us here following your exploits)

  2. pat says:

    Enjoy the next days R&R, drink and be merry. A long hot bath….Have a good day. Heading to work myself.

  3. good luck girls holiday Monday l ondon suns out Chelsea won prem champions 2015 god speed safe landing

  4. Jim Andrews says:

    Isn’t it typical that the conditions become favourable when you are going in the wrong direction. Hopefully you will be headed west very soon with a tail wind and some nicer weather. Good luck with your repairs and a nice shower and meal, then back to the challenge. 😉 XX.

  5. Babs says:

    Wow, so impressed with your resilience, but don’t forget that all these setbacks are designed to make you guys stronger. Let us hope it will be a short stop in SB and then good winds with a calm sea thereafter. You may even have time to get a bird and mammal book, before resuming the row! Can’t wait for our conversation , meanwhile every night We keep watching the moon, Laura! Xx

  6. Simon TY says:

    Hope you have a good run in and can see what conditions are like when the ocean is flat. Looking at the dots, looks like be there before Tues am. Bet you already planning the meal you want. Eight burgers and fries ? Hope arrangements made for sleep, someone to take over the practicalities ( ie do all the shore work for you and have already bought replacement provisions etc). Hope you get some good press now in LA. XX

  7. Karl says:

    Santa Barbara is very nice. Should be some calm waters just ahead. There are some good Mexican restaurants in SB. Hope you can carve out some good sleep time to recharge for the next segment.

    Keep the blogs coming, they are sustaining so many of us that can’t do what you are doing!

    I wish I could be there to see your landfall and welcome you back for your brief respite.

    Make lemonade with your lemons!,

  8. What doesn’t kill you just makes you stronger 🙂 – Awesome accomplishment already and your blog has been the most interesting thing on the internet for the last two weeks!

    Enjoy Santa Barbara, you’ve earned it. 🙂

  9. Katie says:

    Sounds like you’re coping brilliantly, hopefully this is your luck improving. Make sure someone gets you that book on seabirds to take with you!

  10. Tony & Jan says:

    Just view it as an extended sea trial – having ironed out Doris’s teething problems you will be back stronger, fitter, with invaluable experience .
    Dimidium facti qui coepit habet

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