Into the North Pacific

Where Next?
Bob Williams
Sun 22 Dec 2013 03:27

Noon Position: 01 01.7 N 153 53.4 E
Course: North nor' west Speed: 5 knots
Wind: North nor' east, F3 gentle breeze
Sea: slight Swell: North nor' east 2 meter
Weather: sunny, hot, and humid
Day’s run: 85 nm sailed 68 nm made good

At 15.00 (AEST) Sylph crossed the line into the North Pacific Ocean, her first time in these waters. The worst of the doldrums is behind us, though we are not entirely clear of them yet. Last night we encountered two thunderheads which had us reducing sail, and afterwards left wallowing for short periods in the inevitable calm which follows a rain squall. But this morning has once again dawned with clear blue skies and a fresh steady
breeze from the north east. I am confident that we are on the edge of the north east trades.

We are now close hauled on the starboard tack trying to maintain as much eating as we can. Unfortunately the wind has more north in it than I had hoped, consequently we are getting pushed to the west. As we get further north the winds will freshen further and I do not want to have to punch into strong headwinds more than absolutely necessary. Doldrums can be a drag, but strong headwinds are positively painful.

RC, having crossed the line, is now a salty shell back cat, and he has been duly promoted from Able-bodied Cat Robinson Crusoe (ABC RC) to Able-bodied Cat - Shell Back Robinson Crusoe (ABC-SB RC), the ceremony being marked by a special cat treat of a tuna dinner. As if in acknowledgement of his new old salt status, last night I found him snoozing out in the cool of the cockpit in the light of the moon. I hope he doesn't get too sure of himself. I do
not like his chances of being recovered if he goes over the side, especially at night.

All is well.