Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Bon Voyage

To the five people who still look here to see if there is anything new. I am hereby putting this blog into extended hibernation and instead would like to direct anyone to the Eye Of The World Website on which there will be forthcoming interesting updates and much more regular and exiting posts. I am going forth into the world to explore, trying to keep the the world from shrinking too much.

Friday, May 29, 2009

All play and no work

I expect posts on this blog to come more infrequently (I know they already do) with the summer approaching and EYE gaining momentum so I'll just recap and announce. 

Firstly, I graduated. Finally. It took long enough but just in time for life changing events. and new things. Everyone asks me what I'm going to do now and I love seeing their faces when I say, "Oh well actually i'm going sailing around the world". I still don't think I fully grasp what that is but people sure seem impressed. Currently upon returning the plan is to continue studying all things boating specifically wooden boats. I would like a degree in naval architecture eventually but mostly just want to work on and sail boats. I know I already have one trip around the world on my plate but I also would like to sail around the world in a boat that I built. I think that is just something I need to do. 

There is already a ton of post Tybee blab out there so I won't add mine in depth but I will say that this years Tybee 500 was a great one and with more boats than I've ever seen at the race. Trey and I gave our best showing ever in the race and were really happy with the results. No major breakdowns or injuries on the entire team velocity team (all 7 boats of it) so what more can you ask for. Thanks to Wizard and CrazyRussian who greatfully lent their epirbs to the team velocity cause.   

Just days after Tybee it was back to work on the William T. Piquette. Our 40 foot Rhodes Reliant sailboat. Adam and I drove up to work on the boat last Wed. and did just that through most of memorial day. It was a very sucessful session and the boat is getting closer and closer to float day.Be sure to see the Eye of the World website for the very latest news and and details from last week.  
We are adding features to the website every day and beginning to really structure the educational program. Eye will be participating in many upcoming events in the next few months which will be announced on the website so come out and hang out with eye crew. Also, don't forget to donate if you can. $25 bucks gets you a really nice T-shirt!

So what about now? I'm getting ready to head off to Virginia for the summer. I'll be working at the Bayport boy scout reservation with the CHASE (Chesapeake Bay High Adventure Sailing Experience) program up there teaching boy scouts how to sail larger boats (30-35' range) for 7 weeks. Fellow EYE crewmemeber Adam Domanski worked for this program for a couple of years and he tipped me off to it. When thats over, it's off to Hawaii for a couple of weeks to see family and then back to VA to really get eye of the world out the door. 

Saturday, May 09, 2009

Hot links this week

Countdown to the Tybee 500. First leg starts Monday. We have an incredible 23 race boats signed up for this years Tybee 500 a record number. I thought I would help out those that cannot be there in person. Get the most out of your vicarious online adventure by following the race this week on the following sites. - Official race rules and notices will be posted here as well as periodic updates about the race.

Sailing - Another must read with info about race results and cool articles. - Check for the latest tweats. - Race updates as they pertain to team velocity will be posted here. Check out the team site for skipper and crew bios and the latest from velocity sailing. - topo fusion has agreed to provide real time race tracking via personal SPOT mesengers. Those boats that have SPOT messengers will show up on the tracker page during the race. In addition, you can follow TVS1 (my boat) by going HERE (SPOT share page), but you won't see other boats.

Team - You can't forget to read up on the Team Sea Cats blog. They will surely have some of the most up to date info out there about all the teams. A must read. - Just drop in on "general discussion" and find the appropriate Tybee thread that is sure to have some coverage.

More team blogs...
Team Adrenaline- team blog.
Team Chums - team blog.

And of course, don't forget to check out the NORSA blog and the EYE of the World Blog regularly!!!

Monday, April 27, 2009

Eye of the World Launches Website

I would like to announce the launching of the new EYEOTW website where you will find a plethora of information about the educational program, where were headed, what we need and how you can help. Please send comments and suggestions to "alan.stewart (at)". 

In other news:
 School is winding down. The senior design project that has been consuming my life for the last year is finally winding down. Click here to see a video of our senior design aircraft launching and flying. Search youtube for "ncsu optikos" for more vids. 

Last weekend Taylor, Adam and spent the weekend at the Shakori hills Bluegrass festival in Chatham county, NC. Check the NORSA blog for the writeup. 

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Shamrock Half Marathon

This weekend marked another NORSA event attended by members Anna, Bethan, Julie, Taylor, Adam and I. The 2009 Shamrock marathon and half marathon was held this last sunday. Great weather and great friends mad this years trip another sucess. 

Monday we visited the Mariners Museum in Newport News, VA home of the USS Monitor Center and the ACTUAL turret recovered from the Monitor Ironclad. It was very impressive. 

The Tybee 500 is fast approaching. Stay tuned for updates on the Team Velocity website and on Sailing Anarchy.  


Saturday, March 07, 2009

Where are they now?

The old Team RAF Wa'apas made an apperance today as they needed to be reloacted from where they have been stored for the last year or so. So where are they now? still in Raleigh, now living at Matt's house near campus. The hulls are sitting at Chris's house but word has it that they need to move soon too. 

Time has taken it's toll on the parts since their debut and last apperance on the water at the 2007 Everglades Challenge where they carried Team RAF to a 3rd place finish in their class. 

Yes, the 07 EC was the last time the boats were assembled. Yes we have talked about putting them back together but it never materializes. Yes they are for sale but to be honest the hulls need some serious patching from delaminatin. Anyone out there want a pair of project boats???

The housepaint has held up very well, the amas are almost as if they were glassed yesterday. Still very light and stiff. The crossbeams are unchanged and the sails have some mild mildewing that could be taken out with some bleach. 

Yes, time has taken it's toll on the watertribe boats of Team RAF but thats not the point. These boats were built with the energy of a team with the will to suceed and they were designed for one purpose and one purpose only. To finish the EC....and so they did. Time may have taken it's toll on these boats but time has little effect on the will and pasison of the adventurers spirit. Even as you read this, watertibers infused with the adventurers spirit have gathered once again to challenge their boats, the weather and themselves in the Everglades Challenge. 

Follow along on or on the spot tracker page of Sandybottom. (Go mom!)


Thursday, January 22, 2009

Frostbite camping in Linville Gorge

Last weekend 9 intrepid souls embarked on another great adventure to Linville Gorge in western NC. A camping trip to be sure but so much more. With temperatures below freezing during a majority of the trip it was also a test of ones love for the outdoors. We survived so I guess we pass. 
We drove west early Saturday morning stopping in Greensboro to pick up Adam and Cheng on the way to Linville Gorge (south entrance). In all, Dan, Mary, Matt, Chris, Will, Cheng, Adam, Taylor and I were among the select few who aggreed to freeze their own butts off in the mountains with a high chance of snow!
 We entered on old N 105 and drove up the West ridge to the entrance of Rock Jock Wilderness where we began a 45 min treck to the edge of the ridge where we happened upon a campsite that we decided to call home. From there we pitched tents (well some of us) and left for a day hike south along the ridge. We came across an awesome frozen overhang with ice cicles all over the place. After some ice cicle sword fighting we we returned to the campsite for some dinner. Since it was below freezing we promptly snuggled into our warm sleeping bags and managed to stay toasty warm all night. 

In the morning, we had a great breakfast of pancakes. Dan and Mary made sausage and biscuits while Matt, Chris and Will managed to pour what non frozen portion of their dozen eggs they had into a plastic bag with cheese and sausage for some big bag omlettes.  After a short hike out we continued north along the ridge to linville falls where we hiked in to see the frozen falls and some of the lookouts. 
Stopping at IHOP on the way home made for some great reflection of our trip and we were all in very good spirits on the drive home. We made it back Sunday late afternoon. Thanks to Dan, Matt and Adam for their parts in making the trip happen. 

Tuesday, January 06, 2009

LOOKOUT! .... sailing trip

Many changes since my last post of adventure but sailing, fun having and exiting adventure with friends remains as a theme. The weekend before last my lovely girlfriend and I grabbed the Core sound 20 Dawn Patrol and headed for the coast for a weekend of sailing and adventure around the shores of Lookout lighthouse. 

We arrived friday afternoon to a dying breeze but unseasonably warm weather and rowed out of Taylor Creek in Beaufort, NC bound for Shackleford banks to find a campsite for the night. We arrived after dark after being picked up by an evening wind. We set up camp as it began to drizzle and roasted some brauts for dinner over a driftwood fire. In the morning we were trapped until about 9am due to a rain storm that swept over us from the south but it soon passed and we made our way south east past Harkers island through Back Sound and toward Barden Inlet. 

We arrived at Lookout Lighthouse after the wind built to steady 15knots but the current was with us and it was an easy sail in shallow waters for the Core Sound 20. We exlpored the lightouse which was closed for renovations and ate lunch at the lightkeepers museum which was also closed for the winter. We also walked over to the ocean side of Lookout Bight and enjoyed a perfectly clear 65 degree day of sunshine. We shoved off to explore further into the bay and stopped to check out some shell covered beach before crossing to the far end of the bay to find a camp site. 

Here is the photographic trip report taken with the trusty Optio W20. 

We had the whole beach to ourselves and explored all around the peninsula which was covered in flat packed sand and sea grass. Very desolate and beautiful. Macaroni and cheese for dinner and a HUGE campsite all to ourselves was awesome and without a single cloud in the sky it was a perfect night for stargazing. I woke up around 2am to get a shot of the boat beached in the middle of low tide. But in the morning it was bobbing right next to the beach not 20 feet from the dunes.  We made pancakes and hot chocolate for breakfast and packed everything away ready for another day of great sailing and exploration. 

Our clear night didn't come cheap however and the morning also greeted us with a cooler wind shift from the North and gray clouds. We had the boat all packed up just as the rain hit and we watied for a break to shove off back through the inlet.  

The rain POURED as we battled up the inlet in steady 18knots but with the incoming tide we were fully reefed and having great fun but eventually the cold and wet soaked us through and with no sign of letting up at all that day or even afternoon we decided to call it a day and headed back to Beaufort to warm up. After we packed up and warmed up we had fun cruising the waterfront looking at boats and we spent an hour or two in the Maratime Museum in Beaufort. We decided to head home after the museum and to a nice warm bed having explored for the better part of 3 days.