Preparation for GSSR departure

By now, many of you know what are plans are and the trip we are embarking on. It has been dubbed “The Great Siberian Sushi Run” and it begins on May 1st of this year (Yikes~!! Only a couple of weeks away). Ken and Roberta on Sans Souci are scheduled to leave at 7am this morning but it is 7:02 and I dont see any activity yet on there boat. Ooops,….as I speak, I just saw them on

the boat and are the engines are started!




 I told Ken yesterday that early in the morning his boat looked like an ant colony with all the workers scurrying around . Braun and Tina on Grey Pearl are scheduled to leave Sunday morning. I suppose we will all meet somewhere in BC at some point as we all want to be in Ketchikan, Alaska on May 14th or thereabouts.



We have been planning this since last October (when we got roped in by the other two participants, Ken and Roberta Williams on Sans Souci, a 68ft Nordhavn and Braun and Tina Jones on Grey Pearl, a 62 ft Nordhavn similar to ours) and we will be traveling to Alaska, as we did last summer, but this year we will be continuing on to travel the entire string of the Aleutian Islands and on to Siberia and Japan, where we will likely stay for a better part of a year.

All we have been hearing from our cruising friends is “You’re going the wrong way!!!!”. Ok so what if we are? We all know THAT! So what is our reason? Some might say it is the inability to process clear thoughts, but that’s not the reason. Well, in some instances, it probably is true, but not this one. We are really going for the adventure. We are going because few boats have ever done it. We have REALLY prepared our vessels too. All three of us have been upgrading our mechanical and electrical systems to assure that failures in systems are unlikely. On Seabird, here is a list of some of the upgrades:


New Generator

Upgraded secondary Hydraulic Generator

New Chilled water air conditioning compressors with Variable Frequency Drives

New Hydraulic cooling pumps and reservoir

Upgraded the dinghy davit

Replaced numerous hydraulic lines

Added a high speed fuel transfer and polishing pump system

New invertors

AC power boost switch for areas that we encounter with low power

All new appliances with a conversion to propane for cooking

New Radar

New AIS transponder (Automated Identification System)

New Daylight viewable Monitors

Engine room cameras

Bilge alarms

Flow sensors on hydraulics

Digital temperature readout on Naiad Hydraulic Resevoir

4 Survival suits

Upgraded life raft with Hyrostatic release.

All new navigations systems with redundant computers.

LED deck floodlights

New VHF radio

Upgraded anchor ground tackle


That is just a small portion of the upgrades. There are actually many more but I don’t want to bore you.


One VERY cool item that we added is a SPOT device. All three boats have them onboard. It is an electronic device that transmits your GPS coordinates 24 hours per day. We are still working on the specifics, but if all goes well, the coordinates will be transmitted to our website www.SEABIRDLRC.COM and when you go there, you will see a tab that is marked “our location”. If you click on it, you will see a Google Earth map with our current location, wherever that may be at the time. It should be accurate within a few miles of our actual position. It is live now so you can try it. You can zoom out on the map and get a better idea globally where we are or zoom in and see the exact location.


Ken found a great guy who lives in the Aleutians to guide us through there. Bill Harrington has been fishing there on a commercial basis for the better part of 25 years. He knows all of the Islands, the weather patterns, where to duck in and, more importantly, where NOT to duck in. He will be riding on Sans Souci all the way from Kodiak to Kamchatka, Russia. It is a great relief to have someone like that aboard (you’ve probably all seen the show “The Deadliest Catch”). Fortunately, we are going in the best season for weather and we have two professional weather routers to help with planning. We have all used them before and they are invaluable.


As we get closer to departure, I will be emailing more details.

This Post Has 3 Comments

  1. I wish you guys the best! I will be following your adventures with great anticipation and look forward to your updates. If my plan goes as expected I will be right behind you traveling the world in a N55 or N60. Just have to work out the details and make it happen. Again, best of luck and smooth seas.

    Jim Evans
    Fairbanks, Alaska

  2. We’re looking forward to joining you for the first leg of the “great siberian sushi run” – one question…should we bring our bathing suits!!!???

  3. To: Diane and Mike:

    Sure, wise guys, bring the suits with you. We may actually stop at the hot springs in one of the harbors in BC!!

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