Maurtius to South Africa Day One - 21 43.081S 056 05.895E

Mike and Liz Downing
Fri 1 Nov 2013 12:21
Finally on our way again - left Mauritius yesterday afternoon. Having hopefully sorted the rig out we've been waiting for a good weather window. Saying that we hadn't had any rain was the cue for the heavens to open and we had 3 wet and windy days. The weather is key on this passage with several potentially very nasty passage 'gates' to get through. It's 1,550 miles to South Africa and we are bound for Richard's Bay (about 100 miles north of Durban), but may go into Durban itself if the weather is a problem. The weather forecast looks good, but anything over 5 days could easily change, and the weather off South Africa is like New Zealand - very changeable. Gales can appear and disappear very quickly. Combine those with the fast flowing currents and it soon becomes very unpleasant. The forecast shows mostly light conditions and we've been experiencing that all day. It's been lovely and sunny, but with an apparent wind of only 6 to 8kts. Nevertheless, we're making 4 to 5kts with both headsails poled out (and partially rolled to stop them collapsing). Had slightly stronger winds over night and got off to a reasonably good start. The above position is our noon position today, but as I write we have made 142 miles in the 24 hours since leaving.

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