ARC Day 22 – Journey’s End

Position           14:04.48N 60:56.96W

Date                1200 UTC Sunday 12 December 2010

 (All times in this entry refer to local time, UTC -4 unless stated as UTC)

 The early part of the new, UTC, day was beautiful, starlit, windless and with a large swell but little in the way of an overlying wave pattern.  The whole was illuminated by a bright quarter waxing tropical moon in the west casting a corridor of light over the swell towards us; it was absolutely magical, the spell only being broken by the steady rumble of the engine beneath my feet.

 The Mate had the honour of making the first sighting of land, or lights anyway, whilst the Skipper had some sleep in preparation for the dawn arrival.  Waking at 0200 was a slightly surreal experience as there after 21 days were signs of habitation with the lights of St Lucia clearly visible 20nm off the bow and to port and the loom of Martinique 25nm to starboard.  It is an excitement all of its own.  Unlike the good old days the excitement of not knowing if you have the correct island is taken away by GPS, but there is always that lingering doubt bred of experience.  St Lucia does nothing to assuage this doubt as there appear to be no navigation aids on the north eastern approaches.

 It is most curious to see the distance to the landfall waypoint read 5nm when the course and waypoint have essentially remained unaltered since 3 December when the distance was recorded in the log as 1430nm.  It is certainly a different experience.

 We came up to St Lucia at first light as intended, motoring into the teeth of a howling calm.  At least we were able to sail the last hour, max speed 2.5 knots, even if I had to use a little motor to line up with the finish line so that we could drift/ sail across – 06:43.36 local time.

 We are now safely tucked up in Rodney Bay Marina, cleared in and shore power connected.  All over bar the shouting and we are still waiting for the fat lady to sing.

 Some facts and figures:

 Distance it should have been                          2,800 nm

Distance we travelled though the water         3,090 nm

Distance we travelled over the ground           3,106 nm

Hours at sea                                                   501.73 hrs – 20 days 21.73 hours

Sailing                                                             404.64 hrs

Motor sailing or motoring                                96.69 hrs

Generator hours                                             68.38 hrs

Water maker – litres of water made                2,863.5 litres

Thanks for keeping us company

Skipper and Mate

Martin and Elizabeth