At last, Barrabas fully repaired and restored, it was time for Adrian to bid farewell to his new friends and return to sea. At 13:30 hrs on Wednesday May 17, Adrian slipped his mornings at the Waikiki Yacht Club and headed back to sea. It was with mixed fellings, leaving behind a group of people who had helped him greatly and freely given of their time and hospitality. Ahead were many more challenges and uncertainties and a return to the routine of the lone sailor, re-establishing the raport between sailor and boat. bb.firetrench.com www.alphaglobalex.com
While the topsides and accomodation was cleaned up as each groupd of tasks was completed, Adrian was offered a complete underwater clean up. A local diver cleaned off the underwater growth to give Barrabas an extra half knot. This apparently small increase in speed could make the difference between success and failure. Having the work carried out by a diver saved days of delay lifting barrabas out of the water for a full scrape. bb.firetrench.com www.alphaglobalex.com
Adrian had suspected a current leakage and one task that was included in the frantic work to ready Barrabas for sea as quickly as practical was a complete health check of the electrical system including the wind generator, solar panels and batteries.
Waikiki Yacht Club and its members really came up trumps. Without their help in preparing for the arrival of a battered Barrabas, Adrian would have had to wait weeks for boatyard facilities and it would have ended his voyage, at least for 2006. With their help, he was able to bring Barrabas through to yard facilities and inspection by platform revealed that the mast could be repaired without unstepping it. All of the essential repairs were able to be carried out in parallel and it was even possible to include some additional work to improve performance.
With Barrabas tied up alongside the Waikiki Yacht Club pontoon, 9 hectic days of work faced Adrian. One of the first tasks was to collect the spares and supplies flown in by DHL from the United Kingdom. On arrival, this consignment had been safely stored by Waikiki Yacht Club members to await Adrian’s arrival. Club members generously gave of their time to help Adrian collect the supplies and help in the numerous errands that the repair process required.
Adrian and Barrabas were both given a welcome Lei each.
The news media crowded onto the pontoon. The arrival of Barrabas created great interest and many wanted to come to see her and Adrian, including visitors from the UK. Unfortunately, security prevented all but a few reaching the berth.
Adrian docked safely but had to await the Customs inspection. While he waited, his Waikiki Yacht Club hosts made him a very welcome presentation of an ice cold Guiness
May 8 and Adrian followed his Waikiki Yacht Club escort into the dock they had already arranged for him. A sad occasion because his record attempt was now at risk, but a his spirits were lifted by the beautiful island and a warm welcome awaited.
Adrian now faced a navigational challenge. He had never intended to sail close to Hawaii, much less attempted to dock, and had no charts for the waters. The damage to the mast could worsen at any time and he could not risk using the mailsail. Waikiki Yacht Club offered to meet Barrabas off Diamond Head Buoy and lead him in but that still meant 36 hours of helming to get to that position with no prospect of leep or respite. Adrian radioed the US Coast Guard and established an hourly call schedule to allow them to plot him in towards Diamond head. As his progress looked stable, the radio checks were reduced to two hourly intervals but USCG continued to track him right into the dock, finally calling him on his mobile phone to ensure that he had safely docked.
On May 4, Alpha Global Expedition suffered a potentially fatal blow to the record attempt. From the Equator, Adrian had faced fickle weather, lack of wind, and then far too much. In his approach to Hawaii he had encountered freak conditions that had damaged well found larger vessels in the area and caused some to sink. During these freak storms, the damage to Barrabas’ mast became visible. A lower spreader failed and Adrian could now see a torn section of mast where the spreader was attached. This was serious because he had no way of welding the stainless steel mast at sea. It was probable that the mast would have to be unstepped for repairs and that meant waiting for dockyard facilities which would almost certainly cost Adrian the narrow window of ice melt needed to enable him to squeeze between the Russian coast and the Arctic pack ice.