World ARC - Day 56 - 4th March – A Whale of a tal e

Steve and Lynda Cooke
Sat 5 Mar 2016 06:33
04:12S 93:37W

World ARC - Day 56 -  4th March – A Whale of a tale

Nina is motor sailing across the Pacific for the third day, with light and variable winds, normally against us. At least it mean a gentle start of the Pacific Ocean for new crew and Ocean travellers  Peter and Karen. Peter came across on Nina in the ARC Atlantic in November, "its a bit easier at the moment than last time" he said. That was 40 knots out of Grand Canaria! Karen is having great fun spotting all the sea life, and settling into watches at sea.
Thar she blows.......
Night fell, we were relaxed into the cockpit. Dark and cloudy with no moon, and just the big phosphorescence swirls rushing down the side of Nina. Suddenly there is a big, deep sounding blow of air on our starboard side, close enough to reach out and touch it. A big whale surfaced immediately alongside to port, its blow hole behind us in the cockpit, its head out along side the boat, its tail behind us. We see black immense size, with some white barnacled areas, and then it is gone again, sinking below into the darkness. Shocking, sudden, fantastic, surprising, thought provoking. Why did it chose to come up immediately alongside? it must have seen us, heard the boat, heard the engine? Amazing. No time to grab the camera. We didn't even have time to put the stern lights on. Better not to disturb these big old boys too much!

Rain rain go away
Peter and Karen had the midnight to 03.00 watch. It was getting heavier and more oppressive with the weather. Giampi, the Italian lads, came over the VHF asking if we had rain and how much wind? "not yet and not a lot" just as Steve came up from below, the heavens opened. A real torrential tropical downpour, the first we have really had. It was a mad dash for all the hatches that had been cracked open in the oppressive heat, just in time for the main cabin and the galley. It has washed Nina beautifully, reviving all the ropes that were getting a bit salt encrusted and stiff, and making everything easier to work again somehow. Today is now a washing day, drying everything out.