Sailing Alone Across an Ocean on a 30ft Sailboat and Losing the Rudder 1000 Miles from Hawaii
Sailing Triteia Sailing Triteia
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 Published On Sep 20, 2021

Hello Friends,

This is the long format episode that chronicles my 32 day, 2300 nm passage from Los Angeles to Honolulu onboard my 1965 Alberg 30 sailboat SV TRITEIA.

1000 miles from Hawaii my rudder failed due to striking a submerged object (that was painted red). After failed attempts to secure the control lines to the rudder due to large seas and high winds I was forced to steer with a small "Sea Squid" drogue for 18 days.

Triteia is equipped with a vintage Sailomat Aux Rudder wind vane which helped a great deal but was far undersized compared to the large rudder attached to Triteia’s full keel. The Windvane started to fail internally soon after the rudder failure. I was able to make a makeshift tiller handle that allowed me to turn the boat to get it back on course but the self steering started popping out of gear and stopped working completely while I crossed the channel between Molokai and Oahu forcing me to sit on the transom and hand steer for the last 6 hours of this intense passage.

If you would like to read the twice + daily blog posts I made during the crossing you can find those here:

(update: Rudder Repaired May 2022 - )

A much needed shout out to my amazing Shore Team for this passage!

Some of you signed up by accidentally being related to me and the rest of you accidentally signed up because I love you, value your opinion and had your phone numbers.

David Frederick: My big brother and Executive Director of US Cyber Command for the NSA. David kept me safe with twice daily ship reports, checking on my mental health and used his army training to advise me about operating under fatigue and high stress.

Colby Thorp: My baby brother, a US marine and a padi certified search and rescue diver. Colby managed all of my accounts while I was away including the SOS email and secured a trailer for Triteia’s return trip. Thanks to his girlfriend Ashley for her help as well!

Sarah Koenig: A singer / Songwriter and One of my closet friends for the last 18 years. Sarah was only a message away with any questions I had, Google searches daily and kept my spirits up sharing all of the nice comments on Instagram and YouTube. She also looked into general delivery to Hawaii and called ahead to the Harbor Master in Oahu to confirm details for me.

Captain David Stovall: 200-Ton Masters Near Costal License Holder, Screen writer and a Texan so we are likely kinfolk. Stovall keep me updated with ships if I had questions while my brother was at work. He helped me work out the drogue steering and called BoatUS trying to get me a tow into port.

Captain Noah Peffer: 50-Ton Masters Near Costal License Holder, Professor of Nautical Sciences, Artist and dear friend. I hold Noah’s opinion as gospel and he has saved my ass on the last two passages. He is the one I bug when I am terrified.

I also want to thank my little brother Scott for checking on me, My oldest friend (since 3rd grade) Chance everything and My Buddy Dane for always being there.

I can never repay you guys and I don’t know what I would have done without you all!

Forever in your debt !
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Fair Winds,




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