Light Winds Continued

Where Next?
Bob Williams
Sun 3 Apr 2016 00:45

Noon position: 06 36.9 S 174 42.2 W
Course: South West Speed: 5 knots
Wind: East sou’ east, F3 – gentle breeze
Sea: slight Swell: North 1 meter
Weather: partly cloudy, warm
Day’s run: 96 nm

Light but mostly sailable winds have persisted for the last 24 hours. We motored for three hours in the early part of the afternoon, but from 15.00 on, the wind has been strong enough to keep the sails full, though at times it has been under the drifter alone, there not being enough pressure to stop the mainsail from slatting.

At 14.20 we passed within three miles of Condorcet Reef, a sea mount which rises to within four meters of the surface. As one would expect swells were breaking white over it. It felt eerie seeing a small patch of reef like this out in the middle of the ocean all by itself. How easy it would be to have run foul of it before modern navigation aids. Certainly if I had been relying on celestial navigation I would have given it a much wider berth.

In the early evening some more noddies came to pay Sylph a visit. The first one was missing a leg and struggled to find a perch to rest upon. He eventually managed to find a hold on the cockpit guardrail, but unfortunately for him one of his two legged brethren soon came along and decided that he wanted that particular bit of the guardrail for himself. Needless to say the competition was a little uneven. I watched the one legged noddy fly away, unrested, sadly. Compassion, such a human emotion. Sometimes it is nice to be human, even if a little sad.

A little later some dolphins paid Sylph a visit. I do not know what sort they were; they were relatively small and dark, and slow moving, but then so was Sylph and I do not think at her sedate pace that she was of very great interest to them. They soon moved on.

835 miles to Fiji, 2,585 to Sydney.

All is well.