10:31:91S 136:13:15W Day 16
Well it was one of those days! No wind – null, nada, rien de tout, nothing! So we motor-sailed. We tried various tactis to see if we could make the boat go faster but all to no avail. I got the February page done for the website to upload when (and if) we find wi-fi. Matt studied the grib files closely and concluded that the wind should come in around early evening. So he set up the pole and the spinnaker lines ready to get out the beast once we had wind. The good thing is that the choppy waves have gone and we now left with a rolling swell.
About half an hour later, the clouds came over and we got wind – but from the opposite direction to where we were expecting it. We set the main sail but couldn’t get the genoa out because of the spinnaker pole. It then poured with rain so we went out and scrubbed away all the remaining fish scales and blood! Half an hour later and the wind was still coming from the same direction so Matt changed the pole over and we got the genoa poled out. So far so good.
An hour or so later the wind died again. Genoa was flapping around but as we went to roll it in we noticed it had jammed in the rear block and stripped the sheath off. Fortuanelty we had a couple of spare lines so were able to rig up another sheet for the genoa. However the large (very expensive) block was bent. Matt had a go at getting it back into shape using a G clamp and in the process that broke in half so was thrown overboard!
The wind finally picked back up and we sailed on a 2 sail reach then goose winged with the autopilot set to steer to wind. We were going great at 7-8 knots but it was pitch dark by now and although we could see nothing, it was obvious we were on the edge of a large cloud system which was gradually pulling the boat round onto a more sotherly heading. We were going great but in the wrong direction! At around 11.30pm we decided to gybe. That put us nicely right on course for Hiva Oa making reasonable and comfortable progress on a beam reach. The wind died off again at around 3am so the iron jib went on and is still on.
24 hour distance:129 miles position: S10.31.91 W136.13.15