Flying Fish

Flyer of Lorne
Dave Sturrock
Sat 29 Nov 2008 02:54
17:48.57N 22:45.14W
Friday 28 November, Days Run 174NM
This has been Flying Fish day as we saw shoals ( or is it flocks?) of these amazing creatures passing us with one landing on deck overnight. They fly with such speed and energy over the wave tops that they do look initially like small birds, we saw as many as 30 at a time as the warm bright conditions continued. We also saw 2 leatherback turtles close by although this was only a fleeting view due to our speed through the water.
The weather patterns are beginning to frustrate me as we have continued to push South in search of the forecasted fresher winds. These are now blowing from North the ENE which means we cannot yet sail our rhumb line course directly towards ST Lucia. While our log continues to show good distance through the water our VMG distance was only 143NM today. The latets forecasts show mainly Easterly winds at our, latitude which means this situation will continue, the only NE winds to be seen are either South ofv the Cape Verde Islands or beyond mid Atlantic. Oh well, just have to keep sailing the angles downwind. The gennakers remained in the sailbag today as we had up to 24knots of wind which frequently gave us in excess of 10knots boatspeed as Flyer surfed down the waves. The extra sail area would just give us a lot of broaching in the quartering seas without any increase in speed.
I have been taking midday sun sights with the sextant over the last few days with a view to completing my Ocean Yachtmaster qualification. Taking the sight from a heaving deck is proving difficult and keeping the sun in view in what is basically a mini telecope with mirrors is an art in itself. I do seem to be improving each day at least.
We had to replace the domestic electric Fresh water pump onboard today as the old unit packed in. You may recall we had already repaired the terminals on the old unit earlier in our travels, Chieffy did an excellent job of installing bthe new unit.
I was just working out I have been at sea for 6 weeks now as I came directly from the " bouncing Banff" FPSO to live aboard Flyer. That is something of a record for me which looks like being 8 weeks now at least if current conditiions prevail.
A commercial reminder that we are fundraising for the RYA Sailability Scotland charity whilst competing in the ARC. This charity allows disabled people to take to the water and enjoy the thrills of sailing. You can make a donation at the following website: www.justgiving/dave.sturrock
Dave Sturrock