World ARC - Day 62 - 10th March - Celebrations with dolphins

Steve and Lynda Cooke
Fri 11 Mar 2016 22:38
08:41S 107:55W

World ARC - Day 62 - 10th March - Celebrations with dolphins

Today we marked a number of significant events. First was the clocking up of 1,000 nm since we left Galapagos just over a week ago. It's taken a little longer than we hoped but all those days on the engine have taken their toll on our averages. Within a couple of hours we passed through a second milestone of 2,000 miles to our destination Hiva Oa. This may change of course if we
have to alter out planned course but we are following the rhumb line now which is the shortest distance between us and our goal. A celebratory cuppa was in order and Jimmy Buffet on the

Just as this was being prepared Steve and Peter on deck noticed a pod of dolphins on the starboard beam. Shouts went up so Lynda and Karen rushed up from below. It rapidly became clear
this was a special event. We saw dolphins leaping from the water across a wide arc stretching from the front of the boat right around to the back and it was obvious we were looking a dozens
of these exuberant animals. Most exciting of all was the fact that they were heading straight for us. In moments we were surrounded on all sides by dolphins swimming through the water at
great speed with many leaping in the air. It was a unique sight leaving us all excited to see so much going on around us and so many of these graceful swimmers. For almost half an hour we
were treated to this acrobatic display right beside us stretching out for up to 50 meters on all sides. We tried to count them but gave up to just enjoy the experience , even taking photographs
seemed inadequate to capture what we were seeing. After a while the numbers reduced as some went off to find another toy to play with but we still had a considerable number right until they all finally decided to move on.

One of the reasons for our present southerly course is to find the trade winds which run in a westerly direction parallel with the equator. We had hope they would appear today but were
resigned to another day without them. However just as we were admiring the sunset the wind shifted so it was time for a pole dance. Readers of these blogs will remember that this is the
process which takes place on the foredeck to raise a perpendicular pole on the mast on the opposite side to the boom to support the foresail in a wing on wing configuration. This is the
optimum for down wind sailing on trade winds. Steve and Peter clipped on the safety lines and made their way up to the front of the boat whilst Lynda and Karen gave assistance from the
cockpit. We had prepared for this eventuality almost a week ago so it wasn't too long before the pole was up and ready so we could haul out the foresail on the port side. Just before dark came
the job was complete after the usual adjustments.

We now look forward to some comfortable downwind sailing which as everyone knows is the only kind gentlemen (and ladies) undertake, as gentlemen don't beat up into wind.....
All in all a great end to a wonderful day.