Fw: Atlantic Crossing from 26 th November to 2nd Dece26th Nov Day 9 Atlantic 18deg 54'N 32deg 23'W

Chris & Sally Longstaff
Sun 26 Nov 2006 12:38
----- Original Message -----
From: moondance
Sent: Monday, December 04, 2006 1:37 PM
Subject: Atlantic Crossing from 26 th November to 2nd Dece26th Nov Day 9 Atlantic 18deg 54'N 32deg 23'W

26th Nov Day 9 Atlantic 18deg 54’N  32deg 23’W


Yesterday was a significant day in that we reached our waypoint of 20 degs N 30degs W. This point is one of the recommended routes to the Caribbean and the one which we have chosen. We have now altered course  to a more westerly one. Yesterday brought us stronger winds and therefore more progress was made. Today the wind has been lighter which gave us the opportunity of celebrating Sally L''s birthday in relative peace. A bottle of champagne was cracked and a toast was given to both Sally and Neptune!


We now have1715 miles to go from a total journey in the region of 2620 miles. We changed our clocks for the first time and we are now on UTC(GMT) - 2 hours. Things on Moondance are great, the weather is hot, and the sea relatively calm but with huge Atlantic rollers which became a significant feature today.



Tuesday 28th Nov  Mid Atlantic


Position: 17deg 36’N 036deg 33’W


Again we have seen variable weather for the last few days.Seem to be constantly effected by weather patterns to the east or south east. Choppy seas erratic winds.

A fantastic constant sea and blue sky for Sally’s birthday; champagne at lunch, balloons and magic bubbles.


Yesterday it all went pear-shaped. Twistle rig, furled/reefed for the night, but a 25knot squall proved too much and blew the whole rig clean of the mast. Miraculously recovered sail and poles from under the boat, but must get calm patch to go up mast for recovery of fitting and halyard.

Around same time GPS gave up…..

It all happens at once.

Today recovering somewhat from exertions and trauma, but sailing well in fantastic fast conditions. At advice of both Blue Water weather and the legendary “Herb” are heading further south for consistent good Trades.


Briefly accompanied by 3 whales!!! Thrillingly dark shadow followed us, coming right up to the stern before twisting to reveal 40 feet of white Sperm whale underbelly and peeling off into the distance. Makes it all worth while!








Day 13. 30th Nov 16deg 03’N  40deg 59’W


We have now passed the half way stage and have been going due west for the last two days, very satisfying.


The sail south to 16 degrees was fantastic. We needed to come south due to advice given by the meterologists and so we did. It was a broad reach, very comfortable, which gave everyone a chance to catch up on their sleep after the twizzle incident which left us bouncing around under the headsail. It was the sort of sail that you always imagine a channel crossing should be like, but it never is. Constant wind, blue skies, blue rolly sea, very hot.

We are now bowling along under poled out headsail and main.


Chris has been busy mending the twizzle, but the halyard is still at the top of the mast, where it will stay unless we have a flat calm - hopefully not.


I have been busy making bread. The first effort was described by Nigel as the ships biscuit, mainly   because I was trying to be clever and cook the bread on my night watch when its cooler, but it had risen and then sunk! Todays effort has been more successful, but it takes ages to make and minutes to eat. Rolls tomorrow I think.


Maddie has been reading Harry Potter so we haven't seen her much over the last few days, but today she has been making her half way present, some little ballerinas.

Sally D




Day 15. 2nd December.  16deg 37 N. 45deg 36W


2/3 of the way, One week to go. We are enjoying ourselves but will be glad to see land especially if it is Antigua! We are making good progress at 6-7 knots in 15-20kts of wind the sea is very rolly and sleeping at night is difficult as the boat is so noisy. We seem to compensate in the day without any problem. It is overcast but very warm; we seem to have escaped the rain that the lead boat is getting. Every morning we find flying fish on the deck that couldn’t see in the dark. The most exciting event today was a loud splash off the stern revealing a huge marlin leaping out of the water several times and then disappearing once more to the depths.