Transat Day 15
20 hours motoring in 24 hrs. Hmm… No more than 5kts of wind, mainly from
the NW. There is a little low
pressure cell around 100M from us, which has killed off the wind. I’ve tried sailing a couple of times,
but it is painfully slow and at least 40 degrees off course and right now I
cannot face being becalmed with still more than 1000 miles to go. The current’s also not helping us,
pushing us backwards by 6M in the last 24hrs. The forecasts are talking about Trade
winds filling in on Mon or Tues, although whether they will or not is still
anybody’s guess. The forecasters
are certainly only guessing.
The benefits of motoring are good
though – the fridge is cranked up and the beers are cold, the autopilot is
steering the boat, so there is little physical sailing to do and we’re onto
single 2hr watches at night – which means more sleep, which for me is a real
luxury. I’ve calculated and
re-calculated our fuel supply, and although we are playing our trump card now,
meaning we won’t be able to motor later in the trip if becalmed, it seems like
the sensible thing to do given how light things are. I calculate we still have another 30hrs
of engine time in addition to 2hrs/day batt charging time, leaving a small
contingency of 20 litres in each tank.
Hope I have calculated correctly!!
We spent yesterday afternoon having
a game of cards in the cockpit, at which I lost catastrophically (again), and
reading magazines & books.
Starting to read up on the Caribbean and
am very excited as it sounds lovely.
I think we are going to have a ball – what an amazing place for cruising
in a yacht!
We are a little over 1000 miles from
Lucia – still a long way, but it feels like we
are on a countdown now. We had a
look at the chartplotter and realized that the nearest land is French Guyana, at
about 900M, and that the mouth of the Amazon river is closer than the Caribbean!
The weather is lovely – a crisp
clearness to the sky that you have to experience to believe. You can see the clouds dipping below the
horizon and I reckon they must be 70 or 80 miles away. There is a 1m swell but the wavelength
is so long that you hardly notice it.
We haven’t seen another yacht in 3 or 4 days now, but we did see a small
ship early this morning, heading SW.
There is still the odd seabird swooping round us now and again – smaller
than your average seagull but with black edges to their wings. We also had a small bird that looked
more like a big sparrow who circled, looking for somewhere to land, but
eventually flew off.