going south

Tue 30 Nov 2010 05:11
16:41N 30:24W


Tonight we are crossing the 30'W longitude. We started in Las Palmas which is on the 15'W Lon, and every 15 degrees the clock should go back an hour. Funny enough, E sees possibilities: two happy hours on tuesday!!!! So, we decided that tomorrow during the day, we will set back the time, as apparently it is too difficult to do this during the night, as some already have difficulties sometimes to wake up :)

The moon may be the cause here as it gets up later and later each day. The moon looks, btw, every day smaller and smaller, like normal, but from here, the moon circle disappears from top to bottom. We think that normally it disappears from left to right? Anyway, next subject...


While reeling in the line as we were going way too fast to fish this evening, H found that, next to the hook at the end, also a 'fish' was reeled in. It was a 'geep' which looks like an eel, colored green and of about 60-70cm. After removing the hook with pliers and a knife, H suggested we either chop its head of, clean it and store it in the fridge, or throw it back. Looking at the size of the meal, we thought this fish was too skinny for the effort (spoilt as we are) and we ended up throwing it overboard. We feel safe from a fish/food perspective, as the flying fish are now a repeating novelty. On starboard we have one that is stuck behind a panel, and I am pretty sure that soon the smell will drive us to dismantle the panel in order to remove the fish, even on a rough sea. But for now, we are waiting for better and calmer weather, as we have to do a few repairs.


A broke a small thing today, the clip that closes the oven. With a small metal wire it is now temporarily closed, but this means we cannot open the oven :(

More important is the Main Halyard, the line that hoists the Main sail. It was already known that this line, once the sail was put up in full, would 'slip' a little bit in the jammer/stopper. Obviously that is not a good thing but we put this forward to Moody in Las Palmas, and they concluded we should rinse the jammers daily with sweet water. Now we know this was nonsense or at least did not help, as the line itself has lumps in it, and is stretching a bit. We know this as we marked the line with a black marker to indicate when it was fully hoisted. Something difficult to see exactly as the mast is 21 meters high. However, this marker slips more and more the last days, and we are now having to secure the halyard onto a cleat (kikker) in order to prevent the sail from dropping down while sailing. Sofar this worked but we expect the line to break any time soon, and therefore we will swap it with the Topping Lift (Dirk). That line simply lifts the end of the boom (giek) from the roof, and swapping the lines would solve the problem. Lastly we had some water in the bilge, which looks like an old problem. When the boat heels a lot, like it has done the last days all the time to starboard), any water in the bilge is moved to starboard so much so, that some of that water comes above the floor. No, we are not sinking, if this was 1 liter of water it could still behave like this. Then, when we tack, which we did after diner today, the boat heels completely to the other side, and the water that was above the floor, now 'flows' over the floor. It looks like the shower spilt the water, but it is from the bilge. We checked the bilge and it is now dry, suggesting 'old' water in combination with excessive heeling. Tomorrow we will check once more to be sure.


Hard to get on a picture but the swell here is impressive. The dutch I think is 'deining', but it does not cover what I mean. The waves are very long and also getting higher. It is like skiing, we really go up and down mountains of water, and the boat significant slows down or speeds up accordingly., very nice..


The ARC has decided to provide, per immediate, a better analyzed and longer weather forecast. See here an extract from the first one they published today. Reason enough for us to go south after diner today!

"For anyone taking the southerly option the good news is that the ridge is expected to be slowly moving N as the current low moves away to the NE. So by 1200gmt Tuesday the trades should be found at 15N and at 1200gmt on Wednesday at 18N."


"Longer term there will be a large area of squally conditions west of about 33W. This needs watching as it may develop into a small low with some strong wind on the northern side. It is difficult to predict just how strong the squalls will be, however it is likelythat there will be gusts in excess of gale force within this area."

It is now 4:50am and it is very calm and dry, actually quite nice after the last days hammering through the waves, finally the outlook for some good sleep. Hn and E have already experienced a shift with rain, H and A, per today a team, are using the radar to dodge the squalls :)


Now that Hn and H have recovered from eating too old meat, they have been eating biscuits and drinking bouillon only today, although Hn tried to eat some pasta today. It looks like we are going to bake a bread tomorrow, while the engine is running and charging, as we have run out of normal bread. Just so you know, we can bake 16 breads, so we will not be hungry :)


We apparently were in 16th position in our 169 participants group and 34 overall including the 60 or so racers, which we like a lot, but I think today we will give way a lot of places. We can see 'Amelit' approaching behind us, and looking at our speed now, 3.9 knots, this cannot be without consequences for our position. But, looking at the weather report, it is worth it, we want to do some TRADE WIND sailing!!!going south