Jack Nye (86) from Mississauga Ontario and his friend Julien Brown (50) from England, sailed from Canada to Britain and back in 2011 in his Alberg 29 "Panderama II". This was Jack's 18th and final Atlantic crossing.
Celebrating the half-way point returning to Canada.
Rare day of nice weather.
Early in the summer, they left Halifax, sailing non-stop to England, then continued on to Ireland, and then sailing back to Canada. The return voyage was complicated by Hurricane Irene, which pounded the entire east coast of US and Atlantic Canada Aug. 27-30 before heading NE towards Britain the following week.
After leaving Halifax, Nova Scotia in mid-summer, the pair arrived in England. Then they sailed north to Bantry Bay, Ireland. In August they sailed back to Canada, arriving in Long Pond, Newfoundland on September 6, 2011. "Panderama II" was trucked home and Julien returned to his home in Britain.
When he was about 10 days late returning to Canada, his family was reliveved to receive a one-way radio message from a ship to say that they were OK. Jack and Julien arrived in Long Pond September 6.
On the eastbound voyage, the boat suffered broken rigging and ripped sails. On the return trip, pounding rain and strong headwinds hampered their progress.
To prepare his 29-ft Alberg sailboat, Jack specially rigged "Panderama II" for the voyage. He installed a new engine and drive shaft, coupling and refurbished prop. Also the boat had fiberglass work on the deck in April 2011.
Jack Nye is 86 years old, and a World War 2 Royal Navy veteran. This is his 18th trans-Atlantic double crossing. He has also sailed 3 times around Cape Horn. Jack started the family business Nye Manufacturing Ltd. of Mississauga, Ontario in 1952, which now involves his son Mark Nye.
Questions answered by Mark Nye (Jack's son)
* When did Jack make his first Atlantic crossing?
1983 Aboard Happy Heart from Portugal to Antegua.
1985 was his first crossing on his own boat Panderama, a 10-meter Comet built in Italy, bought in England and sailed to NY with 3 aboard. This trip was a disaster, the boat being struck by lightning, (dad was temporarily blinded and he thought his arm was blown right off. One man was washed overboard - and rescued! One had a debilitating back injury. The mainsail roller reefing was pulled out and jammed and had to be cut down - my dad [Jack Nye] climbing the mast and cutting it off with a knife! They also suffered an electrical fire, then ran aground in New York. This was a Hell Voyage!
* Were all 18 voyages in his own sailboat?
No, one was on Happy Heart, one on The Matthew, and one on Tradewinds.
* Has he ever single-handed across?
Yes, once in 2000 when he was 77 aboard Panderama. He had two knock-downs in 24 hours and then rolled over 360 degrees. Panderama was lost 300 miles west of Ireland and after deploying his EPIRB, Dad was picked up by a container ship. This was Dad's most epic trip.
In 2004 he single-handed again when he was 80, aboard English Rose, a Contessa 32.
* Has he ever talked to Derek Hatfield?
Yes, we know Derek fairly well. We sponsor him, we built his boat cradle etc.
* What about the Horn - on his own or the navy?
He rounded the Horn three times on his own. Also once aboard Lord Jim, which was knocked down and badly beaten on that trip. The steering gear broke and the emergency tiller that my dad had made while they were stopping in New Zealand for sail repairs saved everybody. Dad insisted on - they said it was not needed. But he insisted on making it anyway. Quite a story. [But only if you survive! - Pat]
* Any thoughts on how the 18th trip was different from #1 or #9?
Yes, knowing it would his last crossing was combined with cold, pelting rain and wind from the wrong direction made for a miserable, worrying and unenjoyable last crossing.