Jon Sanders celebrates his 81st birthday during his 11th solo circumnavigation amidst pandemic

No Plastic Waste Voyage Update 12 August 2020

Dear Voyage Supporters,

Jon Sanders celebrates his 81st birthday today. He is the oldest person in our history to have solo circumnavigated planet Earth. I am not sure whether that record applies only to solo circumnavigation by yacht or maybe that applies to any means – balloon, plane, powerboat or whatever.

After three months at St Maarten due to COVID-19 movement restriction Jon sailed to Panama to avoid the onset of the hurricane season in the Caribbean. Another spell of quarantine before he transited the Canal and departed Panama on 15 July. He is currently sailing non-stop to Tahiti. COVID-91 dictates 14 days quarantine in Tahiti. Thereafter we will assess options. At present when Jon hits the East coast of Australia if he is allowed to enter he will likely face 14 days quarantine (despite being in isolation at sea for weeks beforehand) and an uncertain future as he sails South along the East coast of Australia. Quarantine again in NSW (if he is allowed to enter), again in Victoria, SA and again in WA. Of course this continues to prolong the voyage and cost associated with port and immigration fees. So when will Jon complete his 11th circumnavigation of the globe? We really have no idea. At this point with continued quarantine restrictions in each port Jon could very well be the substitute attraction for the Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race as he sails south from Sydney. Then again he could sail non-stop from Tahiti to Fremantle with reprovisioning at sea if necessary. Nevertheless, Jon continues to take water samples at 11am each day. The last batch of samples were despatched to Curtin University from St Maarten. The next batch will be despatched from Tahiti. The sample collection  process has been faultless.


Here follows Jon’s latest voyage update received this morning which you can find with his regular voyage updates and tracker that shows his position and boat speed at www.jonsanders.com.


“5pm local 11 August. 8am Perth 12 Aug

Steady ESE trade wind, blue sky 14 to 18 kts.  20 kts sometimes a lot of hours ago. Mild.  Steady progress but big swell from SE. So I guess there must be low pressure down south somewhere.

My barometer was 1015 yesterday and 1016 day before …  only 1012 today,  so low can’t be that far to the south.

In the trough of the current swell one cannot see the next wave, let alone the horizon.

Can you pick me up on AIS? My electronic box says its transmitting, plus there is overlay of PB2 from the tx indication suggesting it is transmitting successfully. I am receiving other ship locations  perfectly. At least that means I know where they are, their speed and direction.

Mind you there have been no other vessels other than Wild Cat for lots of days. Wild Cat was having bit of AIS trouble, Paul (Stratfold) thinks it’s the antenna connection. I have sailed with Paul lots of times. Now he captain of a super yacht. Wow.

I was thinking (antennas are not a big deal), why don’t we have two connected to one cable.  They seem to damage at antenna location on the rail so make the double wire connection further away from antenna. Something to think about when there’s nothing to think about.

I’ve not started the engine for a week. After a week of no engine use I will often run it in neutral for 1/2 hour. I won’t do that for now, as I expect to get some wind lulls near the Islands.

Talking of antennas (as I was to myself), my TV (with no antenna) is not working any more (old dampness etc). I only ever used it for DVDs etc. I do need to buy new 12V TV with antenna connected for TV.

Now I have the Bimini rail which was installed in Perth, why cannot I have two TV antennas – one on each side of the rail to one join, for perhaps better reception.  I can fit all that myself. Ordinary power boats in marinas do not have tall masts but have TV.

Of course I’ve not used the engine to charge batteries for more than a week thanks to 24 V panels and Victron gear.  Not much to see now since the Galapagos Islands. Loads of birds there, volcanoes and fishing boats. Looked like a fleet and a mother ship. Not sure if they were being naughty in the choice of their fishing location.

Anyway, my current position is Latitude 8 degrees 50 South, Longitude 127 degrees 54 West.

Steering 247 magnetic (258 true). 11 degrees East variation.

668 nm to my WP south of Marquises. 1,407 nm to Tahiti

ETA Tahiti Sat 22 August 2020

Kindest, best and everything, plus more




You can read more of Jon’s Voyage Blogs at www.jonsanders.com . They are now illustrated with photos and videos of the voyage.

With our thanks for your support and ongoing interest.


Stephen (for Jon and the team)


12 August 2020