Azores to Falmouth - Day Four 43 02.696N 021 08.746W
Mike and Liz Downing
Sat 19 Jul 2014 18:08
The second topic was the lack of wind often experienced when leaving the Azores. Well, it might not have been a problem up until yesterday, but it definitely is today! By 09.00 today we had around 8kts of wind and just about kept going, but with the wind still fading and having only covered about 6 miles in 3 hours, the engine came on at midday when the wind was barely creating a ripple on the surface. The sun has been out all day and the sea is so blue compared with the grey of yesterday. So it couldn't be more different. But we do need wind to sail and the forecast is suggesting we might not get it until tomorrow. Hope they've got that wrong, but I doubt it. One thing you soon notice about marine forecasts is that they frequently underestimate strong winds, but hardly ever underestimate light winds. Despite having to slow down for the big seas yesterday and slowing down today due to lack of wind, the noon-to-noon run was still 114 miles. Not good compared with tradewind sailing where we hope to make 150 miles or more per day, but okay for any passage from the Azores to the UK. The last time we did it, back in 1996, it took 14 days to cover the 1200 miles and that included 3 1/2 days of motoring!
With the lack of winds the sea has gone right down and is now a glassy surface, lifted by a 2 metre swell that's still coming through every few minutes. But between swells it's perfect for watching out for marine life and we've seen two more whales. Much further away this time, but their blows were easy enough to see, as was their dorsal fins using the binoculars. From these and the good book we have on board, they look like Bryde's whales, which are around 37 to 47ft long, so about the size of Aurora B.
radio email processed by SailMail
for information see: http://www.sailmail.com