Here you will find tales of voyages past and present on our trusty Pacific Seacraft Dana 24, "Sockdolager," and more recently, our Bigfoot29 powerboat, "Raven," from Port Townsend, Washington, USA. In 2009 we sailed north from Puget Sound up the west coast of Vancouver Island to the Queen Charlotte Islands (now called Haida Gwaii.) In 2010 we went back to the west coast of Vancouver Island. In July 2011 we left the Northwest, sailed to Mexico, and in March 2012 we crossed the Pacific to French Polynesia, then on to the Cooks, Niue and Tonga. We spent several months in New Zealand, and in May 2013 loaded the boat (and ourselves) on a container ship for San Francisco. In June and July 2013 we sailed north along the California, Oregon and Washington coasts, and in August we arrived home. In October 2016 Sockdolager found new owners, and we are now enjoying Raven, a unique wooden 29' powerboat. We are currently cruising in the Pacific Northwest, and hope you enjoy reading about our adventures as much as we enjoy having them. (And there will be more.)

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Voyage Statistics

Jim here.  I have been  doing the math and putting statistics together from our voyage.  I also figured out how to load a GPS track into Google Earth.

GPS Track to New Zealand
The voyage lasted for two years and 25 days (755 days).  July 9, 2011 to Aug 2, 2013.

A nautical mile is 1.15 "regular"/statute miles and is abbreviated as "nm". Nautical miles per hour are abbreviated as "knots".  Statute miles per hour are abbreviated as "mph".  And if we just say "miles" it means statute miles.

We sailed 10768 nm.  For you land lubbers that is 12,383 miles.  In metric it is 19,931 kilometers.  For those of a biblical persuasion it is 43,588,160 cubits.  This includes the distance from Port Townsend, WA to Tauranga, New Zealand and from San Francisco to Port Townsend, but not the miles from New Zealand to San Francisco on the container ship.

Of the 755 days away we were "under way" for 122 days.  That includes all the time the boat was actually moving even if it was just for an hour or two.

Of the 122 days we under way, 103 were "at sea" in which we sailed through the night.

While at sea one of us was always on watch.  We used a watch schedule of four hours on and four hours off.  So in the 103 days at sea 1236 hours was spent on watch for each person.  Almost all of that time was outside in the cockpit. About 40% of the time was at night.

Our average speed for the 122 days underway was 3.7 knots (4.25 mph).

The average distanced we traveled in 24 hours while at sea was 83 nm (95 miles).

The longest distance we traveled in one 24 period was 130 nm (150 miles) at an average speed of 5.4 knots.  The shortest distance was 17 nm, backwards (while becalmed near the equator).

A "passage" is a multi day trip between two points of land.  Our longest passage, from the tip of Baja California in Mexico to Fatu Hiva in the Marquesas Islands in French Polynesia took 37 days. The total distance traveled was 2,802 nm (3,222 miles) .  The average speed for the passage was 3.14 knots (3.6 mph).  For the first 17 days we averaged 4.2 knots but then got stuck in the doldrums and averaged only 2.23 knots for the next 20 days. During this passage we used about 40 gallons of water and 19 gallons of diesel fuel.  

The next longest passage, 1142 nm, was from Tonga to New Zealand at an average speed of 4.0 knots and it took 12 days.

Other passages included: three passages of seven days each, two five day passages, one three day passage, six two day passages, and eight one day passages.

For our 122 days underway, 70% were under sail and 30% were motoring.

While motoring we used about 325 gallons of diesel fuel at an estimated cost of $2000.

Of the 633 days NOT at sea, about half were spent at marinas and half were at anchor or on a mooring. Estimated marina costs were around $5000.  We kept the boat at marinas in New Zealand while we lived ashore and toured the South Island, a period of about ten weeks. There were very few marinas on the route between Mexico and New Zealand. On that stretch of eight months we spent two weeks in a marina.


  1. A great voyage, impressive stats. I'm looking forward to your return on experience sailing a Dana in various weather conditions, including heavy weather techniques such as heaving to etc...

  2. I love this!! Thanks, Jim!

  3. Great numbers and very impressive 130 nm in 24 hrs but what about wind statistics? :)

    1. We don't have an anemometer so wind speeds were not automatically recorded. I'd have to go through the log and add it all up - maybe on a nice cold, wet winter day.

  4. Jim,
    You used 40 gals of water in 37 days? Was that net, not including water you caught? Must have had a substantial allocation of grog! :)) Have loved the blog. Jonathan

    1. We did catch a bit, but not more than two or three gallons. We only used fresh water for drinking and cooking. We even brushed our teeth with salt water. It's pretty amazing how little you really need.