Monday, August 18, 2014

Deathmarch Australia! March 23-April 9, 2015

Well, it's actually happening this time, I bought a ticket. This could end up being just Beefa and I, like on the first Deathmarch. Join us if you dare.

My tentative plan is to spend a few days exploring Sydney, museums, restaurants, etc, then take in some of the pre-event on the weekend and bike off Monday morning along the Southern Highlands route. I was sold when I got to day 11 and read this passage:

My head game starts to falter. Days of strong headwinds wear me down, slowly taking the joy out of riding. It becomes more like a forced death march than a summer holiday.


We won't make it to day 11 though, the tentative plan calls for a support vehicle to pick us up on Thursday and complete the trip to Melbourne. Maybe Beefa will be driving if he's not riding, maybe some Sydney messengers will help us out on their way, I'm sure we'll work something out.

Then the race and party weekend, get a ride back to Sydney, and I wouldn't mind making that a two day trip, it looks like there a lot of interesting things to see along both of the major highways. The Princes Hwy meanders along the coast through a bunch of small towns. The Hume Hwy goes straight through the outback, passing lots of tantalizingly named forest preserves and national parks. Or so I've gathered from looking at Google Maps. Anyway, it would be nice to have the time to stop on a whim. And of course there's the team WRECK rule, If you see a roadside jerky shack you must stop, could be interesting in Australia.

Perhaps we will arrive back in Sydney with a day to decompress and lay on the beach before the flight home.

I feel like this has Trip of a Lifetime potential. It probably seems expensive now, and it is. My ticket was $1327 and even with sleeping in a tent or on a floor, food and beverage will be costly. Plus we'll be kicking in for gas (do they call it petrol? I don't know) and I'm sure we're all aware how difficult that can be to obtain, having seen the Mad Max movies.

Anyway, Team WRECK members, if you're thinking about going, maybe ask yourself "when we're talking about The Australia Trip in 5 or 10 or 20 years, do I want to be thinking man, I wish I had gone OR  I'm so glad I spent that money, so worth it?

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Spring Break!

Cruise #8 - Crew : Chief Engineer Boston, Acting Ensign Dabby, occasional rope pullers or looseners - Jacque, Smellen and Wheelie Guy Mark.
Weather : Warm! Felt like high 60s in the marina, a little cooler in the wind, which was blowing lightly but steadily from the east or upstream, which I guess is the norm. 

We tacked back and forth for a few hours. It felt like we were going fast through the water but we barely made any progress upstream. When we turned around we were back at the marina before we knew it. That current is some serious business.

 Boston steady at the tiller. There were a few other sailboats out and we watched what they were doing and sometimes tried to match headings or point slightly off to catch up.

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Grace O'Malley

Cruise #7 - Spring Sailing

Crew : Chief Engineer Boston, Assistant Helmsperson Tricia, Chief Rigger Cory the Kid, Honorary Admiral Eric Spence with Shelley and Ingrid.
Weather : Balmy. Light winds from the west at first, so we motored upstream for a while then caught some moderate wind from the south.

The voyage started with a tiny bit of panic. "Why is the inside of the boat filling up with water?" Not my favorite phrase. It turned out it was because the fresh water outlet from the engine was leaking into the cockpit locker. Boston jumped right in there and fixed it, displaying exactly the qualities I look for in a chief engineer.

 Once the boat was no longer actively sinking we raised the sails and had a very pleasant cruise back and forth across the river.

 The wind freshened from the south and we got going pretty fast a few times, I'm looking forward to a good season of sailing.

Monday, February 24, 2014

Monday, February 17, 2014

MWD 14 : Crossing the Dune Sea!

We managed to produce a fairly epic little deathmarch this weekend, we hiked from Tahkenitch Creek to Three Mile Lake, spending a night in the dunes.

All photos by Cory the Kid.

The weather cooperated, in that it was raining heavily at times with high wind anywhere without tree cover. We were drenched before we made it past the kiosk in the parking lot.


Despite studying the rather simple map we still managed to get lost.

The forest trail was lovely, huge trees, rhododendrons, crazy fungus, lots of newts and occasional views of the ocean.

This angry pig was guarding the trail.

Leaving the forest cover for the first dune crossing was quite an experience, lots of sand and water going sideways at a high rate of speed. It reminded me of the 'white squall' experience we had on that ride up the Nestucca. Dabby, you know what I'm talking about.

We were aiming for Three Mile Lake but after getting lost in the gathering dark (classic team wreck) we decided to pitch camp in a little hollow protected by trees. After getting a tarp up and building a fire it was pretty cozy.
Mace went off on his own solo hike late at night and had some interesting experiences, maybe I can get him to write a guest post.

 The next morning we found the lake.

That was a beautiful place, I look forward to going back some sunny day, the dunes would make a top notch extreme bocce court.

Monday, February 10, 2014

MDW details

Tahkenitch Dunes trail might be a good choice if it's not too windy. Here's an Oregonian article.

Another choice would be the Harris Ranch trail in the Drift Creek Wilderness.

Tuesday, February 04, 2014


Does Team Wreck still exist? Did it ever exist? Are we all just figments of Dabby's drug addled imagination? I say yes, yes and no.


To prove our existence I propose the Mini Winter Deathmarch. February 15-17

Right now the plan is to meet up with Cory the Kid in Yachats on Saturday morning (with a possible stop at the Otis Cafe) and then head out for an overnight hiking trip, possibly to Drift Creek wilderness or somewhere in the dunes around Florence, I'll update this when we nail it down.