Second day on our short trip to Fakarava
John & Stella Dyer
Thu 9 Apr 2015 10:56
What a great days sail, couole of rain squalls overnight but nothing too much, then today its been champagne sailing, ie a beam reach with good winds. For those not of a sailing nature, a beam reach is most yachts fastest point of sail, with the true wind just behind 90 degrees from the bow and the appernt wind at 90 degrees from the bow. Now thats probably confused everyone even more. Its all physics folks. Anyway very pleasant.
The wind has died a bit overnight so we will make less speed towards our destiniation, but as long as we arrive in daylight thats fine. We need to be at the pass into the lagoon at slack water, ie when the tide is not going in or out, as otherwise it can be really hard work, with maybe a standing wave caused by the rush of water out of the lagoon. How does the water get in there you ask, its due to waves breaking on the reefs and going in, and thus has to get out somehow and the deepest exit is the pass we want to get in through. Another reason to get there in daylight is to be able to see and avoid the coral growths which are within the lagoon, there is a marked channel but if you stray from it you will hit coral, which isn't good for the boat!
Anyway expecting the wind to be less until we get in so may have to motor the last few miles, hope not.
Its great but strange being out here, our only communication is via this Iridium system, where the band width is 6 kbs, this compares to the average UK home of 8 mbs, and often 50 mbs, ie from 1333 to 8333 times faster than we can get, so only emails work, anything else takes too long and costs too much. Our other communication is via our SSB radio where we can contact people thousands of miles away, old tech now but free to use and can be effective. However due to this it means we ave no news of the world, facebook etc, so no bad thing really.
I also thought today, how surreal it is to be hundreds of miles from anyone or thing in a big ocean, which is very sporadically populated. Most of the island we visit I and I suspecxt most of you will never have heard of, and to find them on in an atlas or on google earth only shows them up as a spec on the page, maybe a bit of dust. Mkaes you realise what people like Cook etc did when they went exploring with minimal data and kit to see where they were, ie sextants etc, very brave people.