Sunday, May 15, 2011

Enroute to the Tuamotus - Day 15

Miles today: 94 Miles Behind Us: 1,756
Miles to go: 608 (approx 6 more days)
Wind ENE at 9 kt Seas ESE at 2'
Sailing SSE at 4kt - 1 reef in the main, staysail, full genoa

Ahhh... why can't it always be like this?? (Well, it wouldn't be very good if we were trying to go downwind). But for us, right now, hard on the wind, today couldn't have been better. Most of the day we had about 12 knots of wind, and made very nice progress right in the direction we wanted to go. The conditions remain sunny with little white puffy clouds.

Late in the afternoon our perfect wind started to get a little lighter and go NE, of all directions we didn't expect. I was off watch and Dave was reading in the cockpit and not paying attention, and the wind vane got confused and we spent about 2 hours drifting SW. Fortunately I woke up before we lost too much easting, and got us back on course. We almost turned on the engine, but decided to wait until after dinner.

The wind has come back a little and now we are now sailing nicely SSE at almost 5 knots in nearly calm seas. Yay!! It is nice when we have calmer seas, because we can open our hatches and get some ventilation down below. It gets pretty hot down below when we have to keep everything closed up tight because of the seas.

We have nearly a full moon out tonight, and we had a nice 'real' dinner in the cockpit, with the table up, plates and silverware and everything. I fixed a delicious sauteed lamb with mint jelly, fresh spinach, and a baked potato. Yummmm!! This is only our second 'sit down at the table' meal in 2 weeks. In more boisterous conditions we have a couple of heavy bowls with handles on them, and we've been eating mostly 'stoup' (stew/soup)--easy to fix, easy to digest, and easy to clean up after.

We have been trying out a new watch schedule on this trip, lengthening the nighttime watches to 6 hours each. This gives us each one long block of time where we can get a really good sleep. So our schedule now is roughly this:

7pm-1am - Sherry on Watch
1am-7am - Dave on Watch
7-11 - Sherry on Watch
12-4 - Dave on Watch

We are usually both awake from 8-9am, 11:30-1:30, and 4-7pm. This has been working well for us. It is certainly significantly better than our original (4 years ago) 3 hr watches, from a sleep perspective.
Sherry & Dave
Headed South for French Polynesia

At 5/15/2011 5:48 AM (utc) our position was 04°28.09'S 147°14.89'W

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