Friday, May 13, 2011

Enroute to the Tuamotus - Day 13

Miles today: 107 Miles Behind Us: 1,563
Miles to go: 780 or 850 (approx 7-8 more days)
Wind ESE at 10 kt Seas ESE at 2' with a SE 8' long-period swell
Sailing S at 4.5kt - 1 reef in the main, staysail, full genoa

About 5am Dave had to turn on the engine because the wind got too light. But the light spell only lasted a couple of hours, and at 8am we were able to turn the engine off and sail again.

Nice sailing again today, except that we lost the NE wind--replaced by an ESE wind. Still nice sailing, but we are now only able to sail straight south. We didn't make it all the way east to 145 degrees longitude as we had hoped--we are only at 147, and currently not able to sail any further east without t-t-tacking. We are mulling over the alternatives and the weather forecast. Our distance to go reflects that uncertainty.

Our destination, Manihi Atoll in the Tuamotus, is now bearing 175 degrees. Right now, with the current wind (ESE), the best course we can sail is about 185 degrees.

The wind forecast for the next week is for only 9-13 kts varying between E to ESE. If that holds (we'll check the forecast again in the morning), we can probably just keep sailing the best course we can make, and cross our fingers that we can make Manihi without a tack. We will be very hard on the wind the whole way, but in light winds, that's not too bad. There are several light spells forecast in which we might end up motoring anyway. And, we can always throw in that tack the last day, if we need to.

The only thing that would really be bad, is if the forecast is wildly wrong, and we end up having to try to tack east in 25 knots of wind.

Our friends on Infini made it to Manihi today, and Sea Flyer plans to arrive tomorrow. They both left 10 days ahead of us. We are highly envious, as we are REALLY READY for this 'adventure' to be over with!!!

The good news is, this will be the last really long passage for the next couple of years. From here to Tonga, the next longest passage is only about 500 miles.
Sherry & Dave
Headed South for French Polynesia

At 5/13/2011 6:39 AM (utc) our position was 01°19.98'S 147°03.71'W

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