The final countdown! 10:03.645S 137:19.028W

Hamble Warrior
Jamie Hickman
Thu 4 May 2023 02:57

Day 43


Well if all goes well this will be our last full day; and last night, at sea before we make landfall in Hiva Oa.


It has been a tiring and uncomfortable 24 hours with a lot of squalls again. Last night we had strong winds; big seas and several squalls which made for a disrupted night. We reefed the sails down and hung on!


Today we have caught up on some sleep and monitored the weather; after a bit of a grim start it hasn’t been too bad for most of the day but we are braced for another disrupted night and more wind and rain.


We moved the clocks back another hour last night; we will adjust them by another half an hour when we reach the Marquesas.


Our daily run is a very satisfying 139nm which is over a 25hr period; pro-rated that is equivalent to yesterday’s 24 hour run. If the conditions remain as they are we should make landfall during daylight tomorrow. We have just 102nm left before we reach the waypoint at the harbour entrance in Hiva Oa.


It feels a little bit surreal to be so close now. This time tomorrow we hope to have our anchors set and be celebrating our arrival. We will have been at sea for 43 days and 44 nights at that stage. We will calculate the exact mileage tomorrow using our daily waypoints but it will be approximately 4000nm; probably just a little more. At this stage we have used the engine for just the first mile of our journey whilst we got ourselves set. We turned the engine on just once more during the trip to charge our batteries for 45mins the day we failed to generate enough solar power. Since that day we have been turning our fridge off at night to conserve energy and ensure that our power needs are met by what we can generate from our solar panels when the sails aren’t blanketing them. If we sail into Hiva Oa tomorrow we will have used no more than 5 litres of fuel to make our passage. We are extremely proud of that.


Meep has spent the day finding new spots to wedge himself into while he gets some sleep. I think he is as ready as any of us to arrive now, get himself a big bowl of treats and sprint around on deck and up our already tatty foresail to his hearts content!


We expect to make a further blog update tomorrow; either when we sight land or once we have made landfall, perhaps both. If we arrive in time to go ashore and complete our formalities we will do so and then write an update over the coming days; and if we manage to find Wi-Fi we may even be able to post a few photos again; and hopefully share some pictures of The Marquesas. In the meantime thank you everyone that has followed our journey this far. Thank you for the messages passed on through our fabulous “Head of Communications” Claire Shaw, thanks to our families for all the lovely emails keeping us (just about) sane. A big thank you also to our friends sending us regular weather updates, especially “Meteo” Nige who, once again, provided us with daily forecasts for our entire ocean passage from his boat in Greece. Accurate weather forecasting is one of the most valuable assets you can have when making a trip like this; we were extremely lucky to have several sailing friends watching the forecasts and sending us regular updates as well as keeping our spirits up with motivational messages – thank you Ingrid & Kris, Greg & Jan and Nige & Alison for these.


We can’t wait to catch up properly on all the news and updates when we reach civilisation and can connect to the internet - hopefully with a cold beer, or two, in each hand!!