Charleston to Norfolk Day 2 - Flying along on the crest of a wave

Martin and Elizabeth Bevan
Wed 25 Apr 2012 05:55

Position           34:34.71N 075:21.86W

Date                2359 Tuesday 24 April 2012


Currently no sun shining through as it is midnight and we are two hours short of rounding Cape Hatteras but it certainly did during the day.  We are however definitely riding a good following sea and for the last 6 hours we have once again been getting a lift from the north going Gulf Stream, at times as much as 3 knots of current as the Stream heads closer in around Cape Hatteras.


This is definitely 24 hours of Capes; Cape Fear, Cape Lookup and Cape Hatteras.  Each one has a fearsome reputation and or is being given a berth of at least 10nm.  Cape Fear we did not notice but Cape Lookout was noticeable with an increase in wave height for an hour or so.  Watch this space for Cape Hatteras.


The wind has held from the west to north west throughout the day with the strength going from 14 to 23 knots with the odd gust to entertain.  The rig for overnight was a bit of everything, the staysail ketch rig really comes into its own in these conditions and triple reefed everything is currently giving a comfortable boat speed of 7.5 knots and 10.5 knots over the ground.


One of the features of sailing along the edge of the Gulf Stream is the lightening.  We experienced this in spectacular form when we crossed from Bermuda to the Chesapeake in May last year, passing through the eye of it.  Each night there has been a constant series of lightening flashes coming from over the eastern horizon as though from a heavy naval bombardment.


Catering this evening was a well deserved cop out, a most excellent ready made lasagne from Charleston.


Days run, 171nm through the water, 192nm over the ground in good sunshine – a cracking good days sail and excellent progress.  The downside is that it has driven a coach and horses through the planning speed of 6 knots and a daylight end of passage.  Must not complain though!