Offshore solo sailing is different to sailing as part of a crew because you have to be everything onboard: mechanic, cook, navigator, sailor, medic. It means you have to be much more aware and balance risk and reward more carefully. I’m not sure I gave it much thought before setting off as I was so busy preparing everything. It wasn’t until I crossed the start line that the enormity of the challenge ahead hit me.
It’s always difficult to say goodbye to family and friends. Tough conversations are a reality when you’re heading offshore on your own and it’s better to prepare for the worst and hope for the best. I felt well prepared and that gave me confidence, but you soon accept that you can’t control everything and certainly not the elements or nature!
Offshore sailing puts you in an unpredictable environment for long periods of time. The nearest help is often days away and while the risks you take are calculated, there is still risk. All it takes is a miscalculation or an error made when tired for things to go wrong very quickly.