Furthest North

Where Next?
Bob Williams
Sat 28 Jun 2008 16:56
Noon Position: 53 04.7 N 051 46.0 W
Course: Northwest Speed: 3.5 knots
Wind: Northeast, gentle breeze
Weather: Overcast
Day’s Run: 76 miles

As you can see from our day's runs over the last 48 hours, progress has been
modest and not all of it in the right direction. But I am content, we have
been sailing the whole time and while occasionally the wind has dropped off
such that we seem to be going sideways as much as we are forwards,
nonetheless we move. The winds are forecast to veer into the southeast then
south over the next few days, still only a gentle breeze but we should be
able to ease sheets and get Sylph’s bow pointing more directly where we wish
to go.
Sylph and I are now the furthest north we have ever been, and I think the
highest latitude. Sylph's Southern Hemisphere exploits included a number of
Sydney to Hobart yacht races early in her career, which would have taken her
as far south as about 43 20'S, and last year we made it to the top of
Newfoundland, we are well past that point now. The sea temperature is down
to 3 ½ degrees Celsius (38 F), I would say we are in the cold waters of the
Labrador current that runs along the continental shelf which we have been
following for the last several days; not intentionally as it is not helping
our progress, but the wind keeps us tracking in this direction. I will be
interested to see what the sea temperature is like when we get into the
Greenland current, a warm current that runs up the west coast of Greenland
and keeps it relatively ice free, unlike the east coast which I read in the
Artic Pilot due to ice is one of the most difficult pieces of coastline to
navigate in the world, which is why we aren’t heading in that direction.
Bob Cat seems well content, been curled up like the Annapolis Bookstore Cat
for many days now.

Bob Cat:

Adventures! Leave them at home I say. This little funny shaped house and
its antics, I’d swear the thing was alive. Two days ago it was rattling all
over the place, rather upset my tummy and I couldn’t eat a thing, the
absolute end! And despite fear and trepidation in maintaining regular
habits under such conditions, we managed. Thankfully the last two days have
allowed me to regain my equanimity, and, regardless of my condition, work
proceeds unabated, in fact never seems enough hours in a day to squeeze it
all in. Though I am sorry Miss Mary, I am truly am getting close to giving
up on my assignment with skipper Bob. At night I curl up next to him and
he’s up and down, bringing the cold air back with him and in the day when he
sits on the settee, I sit on his lap and let him pat me (I have it one
impeccable authority that it is very therapeutic for humans), but it seems
most of the time he just cannot stay still for more than 20 minutes. We
will persist; I recall the words of our great President Teddy Roosevelt, “It
is not the critic who counts ….” Our joint American/Australian expedition
will get through. Which reminds me where is my flag represented? I
obviously need to talk to the skipper about this serious oversight; he
really needs to pay more attention to life’s little conventions and
Nonetheless - All is well.