Heading South from Durban - Day Two - 34 23.223S 025 27.817E
Mike and Liz Downing
Mon 9 Dec 2013 14:47
A new record has been set today! Our noon-to-noon run was a massive 244.1 miles. That's 53.1 miles more than our previous record. And it's all thanks to good winds and the Agulhas current. With winds around 20kts from behind we were making 6.5 to 8kts through the water and managing to stay in the current all night, that added another 4 to 5kts, so for most of the night the speed over the ground was over 10kts and at times over 12kts. We started to lose the current this morning and it was down to just a knot by noon. In the 2 days since leaving Durban we have made 423 miles and have passed the two major stops of East London and Port Elizabeth. The winds are still forecast to be fair so we are continuing to head west along the bottom of the African continent. Although the winds are forecast to be fair in respect of direction (from the east, so behind us), they are due to get stronger - 25 to 29kts tomorrow, so we'll have to batten down the hatches and be ready for them. The day has been overcast, but there's been quite a lot of chatter on the VHF and SSB, with yachts trying to decide where to head for next, and yachts and commercial shipping calling to try and avoid one another! There's a fair bit of shipping and fishing boats to negotiate. Most yachts had expected to stop at East London or Port Elizabeth, but no one wants to stop while the weather window continues to look good (i.e. no south westerlies for a few more days yet).