Mina2 in the Caribbean - Where's The Ice Gone?
Tim Barker
Sun 22 Jan 2012 06:21

Position: 55:49.372S 067:17.627W

Date / Time: 22 January 0230 (0530 UTC)




At 0015 on 22 January 2012, Mina2 and her intrepid crew rounded Cape Horn. Her skipper had spent days planning to avoid any part of the crossing of Drake Passage involving anything more than half a gale (up to 34 knots). In the event we rounded the Horn in the only way that this iconic landmark should be rounded – with 50+ knots of wind (that’s close to 60mph – difficult to stand up in) and big seas.


Sadly it was at the dead of night so all we saw of this dramatic rock was the light of the lighthouse blinking through the driven spray every five seconds.


What he hadn’t counted on was that this was the easy part of the evening. We’d fondly assumed that once we tucked round the back of Cape Horn the wind would abate. Huh! It got funnelled and increased further as we made our way the ten miles to the only anchorage anywhere near that could provide protection for us. Getting into an anchorage in 50 + knots of wind is one thing, but when it’s an anchorage that you’ve never seen before its another. When its an anchorage that you’ve never seen even AFTER you’ve anchored there, well that’s a whole different ball game. We nosed our way in using two GPS chart plotters (which, unhelpfully, disagreed with one another) and the radar and battling against the fierce winds dropped our anchor in hope and not a little fear. The anchor seems to be holding at the moment but only when dawn breaks tomorrow will we know whether we are within inches of the rocks are firmly snugged into the middle.


Meanwhile we won’t be sleeping too well as the sound of the wind ripping through the rigging and trying to tug our anchor out of the ground is deafening. We all felt it was a little premature to crack open the champagne.