Hurricane Breeds Cape Horn Rounding

A 3-issue series in Cruising World Magazine carried a riveting story of three friends’ adventures aboard Home Free, a Morris 51 owned by Bob and Jane Trenary. The account by Bob Rubadeau lays the ‘blame’ for their assault on Cape Horn to a recovery delivery after Hurricane Ivan hit Grenada.

This was no ordinary hurricane. 160-knot winds devastated Grenada as well as islands nearby. Those, plus 20 feet of storm surge, caused mayhem among the yachts there, perhaps 200 of which had their masts snapped off.

The shoreside assessment of Home Free listed a hole in her side, the galley portion of her starboard interior relocated off to port but, incredibly, her GMT carbon fiber spar and rod rigging had held when so many masts around her had not.

Because the situation down-islands was so chaotic, temporary repairs were done (Tom Morris, President of Morris Yachts, flew in workers from his Maine factory) so that Home Free could be sailed north for full restoration. That voyage brought the two Bobs and Jim Stanek together for an 1800-mile trip back to Morris Yachts, at the snowy December conclusion of which the three formed the “whacky” idea of sailing Home Free, when repaired, around Cape Horn, proof of which success is shown above.

The rest, as they say, is history. But, we are pleased to know that our spar not only survived Hurricane Ivan but attained that Holy Grail in sailing: rounding Cape Horn.

For more information on GMT masts, click here.