Entering the Roaring Forties

Miss Molly 4
Bob & Peggy Wilkerson/Geoff & Merel Pettifer
Tue 4 Jan 2011 20:58
40:45.72 S
148:57.54 E

We are underway for 26 hours now. The drawer that contains our cold weather
clothes is rather empty at the moment - we are wearing most of its contents.
Not surprising when you think that we have now entered the Roaring Forties!
The temperature is down to 15 degrees C. With each mile we are setting a
personal record of most Southern sail. Of course we get outdone by Miss
Molly, who in her previous career has spent time in Antarctica. This girl
knows about cold. It's just a bit of a shock to us when you are supposed to
be in the summer season, although quite frankly it feels nice and crisp and
you can dress up for it. But we expect it will warm up a bit as it is still
early in the morning.

As soon as daylight arrived we could see the outlines of Flinders Island,
which is about 100 Nm off Tasmanian main land. A school of about 20 small,
white bellied dolphins swam with us for a bit, frolicking around the bow.
Always a nice welcome when you are about to arrive at a new destination and
it makes you want to believe they are a sign of good fortune. Last night
there were also a few dolphins, although we could not see them. But the
signs were there: the distinctive blows alongside and the white jet stripes
where they were moving through the water. It was a dark, starry night and in
the distance we could see the glow coming from the oil rigs that are
situated in Bass Straits.

It has not all been gliding through the water, we have also re-discovered
why a boat is called a tumblehome. But as the winds died down overnight the
waves moderated more. The North-easterly winds are now so light that we have
to motor. We would like to keep the pace up to arrive before dark at
Wineglass Bay. The further South we get, the longer the daylight hours. Yesterday it did not get dark until 21:00 so there is good hope.

We will keep you posted!