Blue Wonder - Monday 29th November
Rapier 550 on tour
Mon 29 Nov 2021 17:03
22 10.41N 34 49.36W
The Easterly has continued over night but dropped to 20 knots and so we decided to sail under Asymmetric Spinnaker alone, which was going really well for a while. The seas are still quite big (3-4m) but from behind and the Asymmetric was pulling really well with boat speed constantly around 12 knots and rising down the front of the waves to 14 or 15. ETA St Lucia came down with the better speeds and we were all feel very pleased with our selves! Even the motion of the boat was better at speed and from the forward helm position you could see really easily the sail shape and trim it whilst keeping watch.
However, over the horizon behind us came a squall with the attendant rain and wind!! The spinnaker was pulling, the boat was surfing and we doing nearly 19 knots with more wind to come!! At that point I decided that "discretion is the better part of valor" , or in other terms, I don't really want to do 20 knots right now in these seas, even if the boat can!! I decided to ease the spinnaker sheet and spill some wind to reduce the boats speed.
That may not have been my best idea of the trip!
The now eased sail was very annoyed at not being allowed to play with the rising squall and in a sulk, promptly, shredded itself!! Ahh, that wasn't the plan! It split from clew to luff tape in one ragged tear....our sail repair kit isn't going to fix this one!
Out came our trusty deck crew and in a few short minutes Jared and Beat had it furled and in the bag, despite the wind and now rain, lashing the foredeck. Fortunately, someone had to handle the halyard from alongside the helm, in the warm, dry and safe forward cockpit - the view form my position is in the picture below!!
Shame about the spinnaker - but we still have a Parasail for when the wind gets a bit lighter and so we will be back to those 12-15 knot speeds again tomorrow.
The rest of today and tonight will be on jib alone but still making 8 knots over the ground. Not as fast but at least we can get the laundry done and catch up on some movies!