Turning around

Mon 16 Jan 2017 11:04
06:46.514S 114:36.436E

Things started well. We managed to catch the tide flowing up through the strait between Bali and Lombok and, although it was rather bumpy, we shot North at 12 knots. For the rest of the day and through the night things were a bit troublesome: light winds interspersed with sharp thundery squalls. This meant we kept alternating between sailing and motor sailing and putting more sail out and taking it back in again. Hard work but no real issues. However today the weather has got worse and worse, rain storm after rain storm after rain storm, with the wind building and the swell getting higher and steeper. We had all three, wind, current and swell, right on the nose. Phil had been worried about this patch of bad weather but we had no choice but to leave as our papers were up.

It was super uncomfortable and the further North we went the worse it got as we moved into shallow but open sea. Eventually, after a particularly nasty squall, we hove to for a while to take stock. Pushing further North and West with the bad weather only getting worse didn't seem like a good plan so we have turned around (phew! What a difference the wind behind you makes) and we'll duck down below the islands to see what shelter we can find to wait this out.

We feel like we've spent all day in the gym, bracing ourselves against the rolls and navigating around the boat whilst she's heeled over, pulling jibs out and furling them back in again, reefing and sheeting in. We are fine, a little the worse for wear: we are bruised where we've bumped against things and I turned my ankle when I landed awkwardly coming down the companion way. We have been soaked to the skin so many times that we've given up going out in clothes - easier to towel ourselves off after than to have yet another set of shorts and t-shirt to find a place below to dry. I hope no fishing boats pass too close.

Passage Food

Day 1 - Lunch: mushrooms fried in butter on toast. Tea: scones with jam and butter.

Day 2 - Breakfast: porridge. Lunch: reheated fish pie I made a couple of days ago. Afternoon pick you up: banana, apricot and coconut water smoothie.

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