Day 16 - 08 48.80S 134 08.13W

Mike and Liz Downing
Sun 16 May 2010 01:17
The wind has remained in the east and higher than forecast at about 20kts, so we've been making good speed under the 2 reefed genoas. The daily run was 164.6 miles. We are having great weather in the afternoons and evenings. Very few if any clouds in the sky, so bright sunshine and a lovely deep blue coloured sea with white horses here and there. The sea has dropped a bit and the motion is generally a lot better. Running down wind we have mostly following seas which the boat rides with very little roll. On occasions a big swell comes from the south east and we roll until it passes. All the yachties who have made this passage this year have complained about the confused and uncomfortable seas. We were lucky early on in the passage when the sea state was quite mild.

At noon today we had 290 miles to go, so we are still on target to get in on Monday morning. We're heading for Fatu Hiva, the most easterly of the Marquesas and they say the most beautiful. Strictly we should go on to Hiva Oa, which is about 35 miles from Fatu Hiva, to check in and then return to Fatu Hiva, but that would mean coming back against the wind and sea. No one does that and most of the yachts we talk to on the net are stopping in Fatu Hiva first and risking a possible fine. We have a legitimate reason for going there as the anchorage is much easier to get into if we have to sail all the way in. It's also supposed to be a much calmer anchorage than Hiva Oa for doing any work we need to do to find and repair the leak in our fuel tank.

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