Thursday, October 18, 2007

Tuesday 16th October

At Sea

22 26.085 S
159 57.800 E (at Midnight)

Happy anniversary Dale and Lorie, enjoy Ruth’s, wish we were there!
Another day of unexceptional sailing followed. The day’s forecast was for 10 – 15 knots of wind and for once they were pretty close to the mark. Our speed dropped with the decreased wind and we were now doing less than 5 knots. The knock on effect was that the sails began to flap and bang as there wasn’t enough wind to keep them full. We poled the jib out in the hope that it would keep some of the flapping at bay – it worked for a while but the wind then began to veer around to directly from behind which is not our best point of sail. I tried to type up the blog at about 14.30 hrs but after being below in the nav. station for 20 minutes I felt quite ill and had to make a quick dash topside to part with my lunch over the side rails – the first time since beginning this trip! I gave up typing and went to sleep for the afternoon instead –a much better plan! By 17.00hrs the jib pole was redundant as the jib was flapping even with the pole in situ .We took the pole off and furled the jib away, leaving just the main to flap and bang at will and occasionally fill and push us along. We ate dinner hoping for a decent sunset – it vanished behind clouds, I am convinced that there is no green flash as it seems there are always clouds at sun set. The night watches began and at 21.00hrs the wind was down below 8 knots and our speed was dropping to 2.8knots; Gerry had enough and turned the mechanical wind on to increase our speed to 5 knots. A short while after there was a huge black cloud which extended for miles down our port side but according to the radar showed no rain in it; it did however affect the wind, bringing it round to the starboard side and at around 22.00hrs we had to tack to keep any wind in the sail. The change in direction didn’t affect the speed though we still needed to motor sail. If anything the wind became lighter and at times seemed to veer from one side to the other. The flapping continued until we finally gave up trying to sail and dropped the main, motoring became the only way to go!



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