Fia med knuff 20.18S 155.48W
Salsa af Stavsnas
Ellinor Ristoff Staffan Ehde
Mon 26 Aug 2013 08:49
Today we can talk about weather variables. For those interested, there is a deep low pressure cell passing below us and actually messing up the so called tradewinds. Which, ackording to the books are very infrequent past Marquesas and this time of the year.. What makes the big differences in the weather in this part of the world is what happens down by the roaring 40s and the SPCZ. So when we get the weekly weathergram from Bob Mc Davitt, the Soutrhern Ocenas Weather guru it can give this info:
South Pacific Convergence Zone SPCZ=20
The SPCZ currently extends from Solomons to Fiji/Tonga and is increasing =
in intensity. It is expected to stay in much the same position during this =
week, but SE trade winds over Vanuatu and Coral Sea are expected to become =
strong in a squash zone as a slow-moving High forms in the Tasman Sea. =
There is a smaller Convergence Zone CZ along 10S around Northern cooks.=20
End of Weathergram
Right now this low pressure below us has a through and you should always be aware of those in your isobars. They can cause a lot more wind than the forecast says in the big picture or as it is in this case it becalms the big picture. This phenomena is very local and we knew it was coming when we left Bora Bora. But to be honest I thought we should have been closer to Rarotonga by now.
The winds have been far below the forecast and today part of the through gave as a taste of its effect.
The wind was turning during the early morning, at last we where pointing straight south as the windwane adjusts to the wind.
I let it go south until we where done with the morning radio session and a good breakfast (with bananas yes).
Then Ellinor and I jibed and got the genacker up since the wind was coming down to 7-8 knots (half of it is meter per seconds, about....)
It is nice with a light wind sail, it does not flogg in the waves and it just starts pulling right away.
As it became calm the waves almost disappeared. And it was strange to hear how quite it can be on the ocean....
Lunch-oh yes-anything can happen...
As we where all sitting with a bowl of hot fish soup and Ellinors fresh baked bread, it started to rain, just like that. Nobody had noticed that mean little black cloud coming from behind. Andreas panicked since he has learned that his ipod nano cannot take any water, and he had it around his neck. And as he was trying to protect it, a bowl of soup was poured over Erika. Thank god we give Andreas very little soup so it was already cooled a bit. No burns on Erika. But she yelled and at the same time that little nasty cloud started to blow a gust that made the genacker spinn around itself. So we had to hand steer to keep the course to the wind and of course it was spinning so soon enought we where going back towards French Polynesia. But we tried to finish the soup and as we noticed there where a line of clouds that wanted to play with us, we simply took down our football field of sail before it wrapped the whole boat in it (For those interested in arts, we call it a Christo).
As the clouds noticed we did not want to play they disappeared and left us wit no wind at all (booooring!).
Absolutely no wind. So we started the engine and the watermaker and made way towards Cook again.
Three hours later the wind was back to 6-10 knots so we closed the engine and got the genacker up again.
Again, so quite. And the boat was behaving like sailing in an archipellago. Almost no waves.
Ellinor went to bed and I played the guitar all afternoon. So now my left hand fingers hurt (yes steel strings).
Dinner, spagetthi with our soyameat sauce and parmesan from Tahiti.
Then we could set up the table in the cockpit, wich we never do normally since nothing stays on it. And played Fia med Knuff (for those that are non Swedish google it... "Fia med knuff" and look at the pictures and you will know what it is.
Since it was a world championship announced the kids made medals before dinner...
The game was horryfiing ( or horrifying), Andreas being the nice guy and I being the bad. Andreas got the gold medal, Erika the silver and the adults shared the Jumbo...
There was a lot of shouting and applaus, but we can promise no one heard us.
I got to bed and as Ellinor woke me up twenty past eight the wind was beyond what we consider safe sailing with the genacker.
It was pitch dark but with decklights and a syncronised crew, we got the genacker down in no time. Got the spinacker pole out and poled the genua to keep course and speed. Wow what a feeling when everything is done in 15 minutes! And you hear the boat pick up speed again and the wind has power to push us with good speed! And now everybody is sleeping, the brightes light in this place on earth being the computer screen. The wind howling and the waves back to normal sound again.
Tomorrow we expect a second round with that isobar so we will see what we learn from that.
The Radio Net
Believe me, the radio net gives a lot of national characters away. I just love the anglosaxian way of describing an extreme situation.
Lets say we have a couple of boats out there in very tough weather conditions: They have all the same, but it is described in a subjective manner of course. When you read it, add the radio background noise, beeps and statics.
The Swiss boat, shouting on the radio (with an accent of course)
-Ziss iz vezzel Katrina, dzo you hear uzz?
- Katrina, good morning, go ahead
- Weee hav pozition 12degrees 45 zouss and 145 degrees 19 vest
-thank you, and you conditions?
-very bad wezzer! vind iz 40knots! vaves at leazt 5 meterz!
-OK, all well on board?
-NO! Ziss is ze worze night ve ever had!
-OK, but is all well on board? (This is an important question meaning if help is required)
-All vell on bord, zank you... (and you can hear how he hates to say it)
- Next vessel?
(Sounds like he is out jogging, having a great time) - Good Morning! This is vessel "Always Sunday", how do you copy?
- Loud and clear, go ahead!
- Our position is ...........................
-Great thank you (in the real world the net operator has to repeat the coordinates, but I save some ink), and how is the weather?
(Again sounds like it is just marvelous) - Oh! Its like an English Bank Holiday! Drissling (meaning we have 20mm/sec)
the wind is about 20 knots, freshening up to 40s in the gusts!
-Thank you and sea state?
- Oh, the sea! Well I guess we have a 4 meter swell with some cross sea, yes (like he just noticed the sea conditions) it's rather bumpy!
- All well on board?
- Great fun thank you!
Or I like this from this morning (English vessel)
-All well on board?
-All well, just some nuisance with the fresh water!
-OK, that means?
-OH, the fresh water pump has pumped the tanks clear of all the water we had into the bildges
-That sounds serious!
-Well it's a boat you know!
-So what are your intentions?
- well I guess we have to get rid of the water and find the leak, will keep me busy today!
-and fresh water?
-oh that? (sounds like -who cares as long as we have beer) Well when we find the leak we will make new water with the water maker, no problem!
-Good, next vessel?
(Heavy american accent)
-Goooad Morrrning! This is sailing vessssel (sound like he is giving his aircraft carrier away) "Good Hope" do you read me?
-Loud and clear!
-Our position is.... (he makes it slow, clear and with a barriton voice)
-well (he is looking slowly out the porch, it is his time now), I guess we have some showers, and the meter reads 30 knots. We have some nasty little waves out there! (Like Disney waves?) Some even pooped at us!
-all well on board?