Where Next?
Bob Williams
Sat 16 Mar 2013 05:48
Noon Position:  38 46,1 S  142 48.5 E
Course: North nor' west  Speed:  6.5 knots
Wind:  South sou' west  F5-6 fresh to strong breeze
Seas: moderate  Swell: South west, 3 meters
Weather: cloudy, passing rain squalls
Day's run:  30 nm
The wind has arrived.  We drifted all of yesterday and most of last night, but at five this morning I could hear the ensign fluttering, a good indication that we had a breeze with sufficient energy in it to keep the sails full despite the significant swell.  In anticipation of strong winds today, yesterday afternoon I took the precaution of changing the headsail down from the genoa to the number three jib.  I am glad I did, for while the breeze started out gentle enough within a couple of hours it had freshened significantly, sending showers of spray over the bow and coach-house and starting up a very annoying drip right over the dinette table, where I spend a large part of my day staring at this little computer screen.  The leak is one of those jobs I have been meaning to do for some time but have always managed to put off.   The drip had gotten sufficiently bad however that despite the regular cascades of water being thrown over the boat I decided I would see if I could fix it.  The problem is around the vent tube which passes through the coach-house roof.  I pulled the dorade off and used some emergence epoxy filler to seal the joint.  It took me quite awhile, during which time I got totally soaked, and the leak isn’t completely cured but it is a lot better.  I promise myself when we get some fair weather or into harbour I will fix it properly.
The wind is not as on the nose as I had expected so we have been able to free the sheets a little and are scooting along under reduced sail quite comfortably.  The worst of the squalls associated with the front seem to be over, the sun is shining, the sky is increasingly blue, and Cape Northumberland is about eighty miles away.  Here we will be able to bear away and ease sheets even further, and by then the breeze should have eased a bit more and, with a little luck, tomorrow we might have a nice downwind ride.
All is well.