BVIs to the Azores - Day Seventeen 36 00.150N 036 02.381W

Mike and Liz Downing
Fri 13 Jun 2014 20:50
Oh for tradewind sailing - we miss it already! The wind has been swinging from the south to south west and then north west and back to south, and it's doing it every few hours, if that long! So lots of sail changing, with poles up, poles down, re-feeding sheets here, re-feeding them there, main up, main down. And we're getting rained on while we do it! Yesterday and this morning it was typical English Channel weather - totally overcast, low cloud, rain and wind from the SW. As a front went through today, the wind shot round to the NW and the skies cleared. So we have had wind, but not a lot today. It was better yesterday and overnight and that helped achieve a noon-to-noon run of 134 miles. We're now making 3 to 5kts in 8 to 10kts of wind from dead astern. The forecast suggests we may continue to have some wind until tomorrow morning, then it suggests virtually nothing until Monday! The good news is that we've sailed over 2,000 miles from the BVIs and have only 372 miles to go. However, as said yesterday that may still quite a while longer. Although the winds are light there is a 2 metre swell from the south which is rolling us all too frequently. Not nice! What is nice is the beautiful rainbow that we've just seen - such vivid colours and a complete semicircle. Keeping our eyes peeled for whales and dolphins as we approach the islands, but this swell doesn't make that easy. With the grey skies of yesterday the sea was black and every wave looked like a fin breaking the water, but they were all false alarms and we didn't actually see anything.

We're still on BVI time, so GMT-4, as we haven't found any hours spare to lose! Going east we lose hours and the Azores operates on GMT so we'll have to lose 4 hours at some stage. At the moment we've come to the conclusion that we'll lose them once we've arrived and that won't have such an impact. Staying on BVI time means it gets dark quite early, but it's light very early in the morning, which is actually not a bad way of doing it.

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