Squalls continued until 7 degrees south, where there was a beautiful blue line stretching across the southern horizon. How does the weather know where the lat lines are?? Some very frustrating sailing getting caught in holes at the wrong end of a squall system, some of which were over 150 miles long!
We have had about 5 great days of sailing like it should be. Wind and swell on our port quarter, clear skies. Today is day 15, so that is not a good average for the best sail in THE world! Key word in the literature is 'can be' the best sail in THE world. Read the small print!
Peter spent one morning, when it was not so rolly up the mast twice. Once to take down the broken forward spot then another to fix the lazy jacks. Harness on and with me tailing, he free climbed to the first spreaders, each time. He is still pretty fit!!
I think Peter must have secretly belonged to the Foredeck Union at some stage as he does a great job up the pointy end. We only know him as the master helmsman! The autopilot has usurped him with the latter.
We have seen a fishing boat, small freighter and a very large whale (Sperm??) that was over twice the length of us, all heading north. In all the ocean, we were actually on a collision course with the freighter. We think maybe he had been at Easter Island.
In the early stages of the week, when we got stuck at the back of a system, we motored out of it looking for wind. We have about 70 hours of motoring left before we run out of diesel, so with light winds around the Marquesas, it could be challenging!
We are getting a little bored now and are looking forward to the next two days to reduce our distance to under 1000 miles to go! Lots of books being read and a few story tapes. When we know we have enough fuel, we may get to watch a movie. We are watching the power consumption.
Red Sky was fortunate to be at the front end of the squall system we were at the back of and consequently raced ahead to be now some 280 miles in front of us. They have had very different wind and wave conditions to us. We sail as fast as the Moody 54 given the wind just abaft the beam.
So with 1000 miles of westing to do in 100 odd miles of southing, the next week will be painful. We expect to arrive on April 20. Not a fast trip. A Hylas 47 did this in 18 days last year, obviously with more wind.
Hopefully by week 3 we will be almost there!!
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