BVIs to the Azores - Day Twelve 32 38.807N 048 30.017W

Mike and Liz Downing
Sun 8 Jun 2014 21:51
No longer close hauled! The wind came up from the south west last night. Light at first but by morning it was 15 to 20kts on the starboard quarter, so the main is away, the leeward (working) genoa sheeted normally and the outer genoa poled out to windward. Both are reefed, but the speed is anywhere between 6.5 and 7.5kts as the wind eases and strengthens, and occasionally it's up to 8kts. It's good to have the wind behind the beam and to be steaming along after all the slow stuff. The sea is up as you would expect and a bit bouncy, but it's not bad, and with the sun shining and a beautiful blue sea it's a lovely day. We're now starting to go around the top of the Azores High and hope this wind will stay for a few days. Our noon-to-noon run was 130 miles.

Have had some beautiful sunsets the last few days. The day before yesterday was a double green flash sunset. The green flash occurs (and it's real, not a myth and doesn't depend on how much rum you've had!) as the sun just sinks below the horizon. If there is a swell and the timing is just right, once the sun has disappeared, the swell lifts the boat up and the sun is visible again and you see the green flash again as it goes below the horizon a second time. You do need a cloudless sky to see it. Often here are fluffy white clouds just on the horizon that get in the way.

Yesterday's scupper repair was not a 100%, but a lot better than it was, so it's been reinforced this morning and we hope that will do the trick. We won't know for sure until we have running water on the deck and that should be less likely on this broad reach. Being close hauled, unless very light, gets more water over the bow and often scoops water up amidships from higher/breaking waves, so the decks are a lot wetter.

As I write we have another reason to celebrate - we now have under 1000 miles to go (993.3 to be precise!).

Had around 6 dolphins play around the boat for 20 minutes early this morning. Must get the book out and see what they are as they're not Common or Bottlenose dolphins which we know well. They're much too small for either of those.

A few weeks back we were asked, along with a others, at very short notice (2 days!) to provide some feedback on good/bad sailing gear for a possible article to go into Yachting Monthly. Apparently some of our comments, attributed to us, have been included in the article which is in July's edition. So if you have a copy and you search long and hard you may find some of our words of 'wisdom'!

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