Getting There

Where Next?
Bob Williams
Sat 9 Apr 2016 00:42
Noon position: 13 25.2 S 179 19.1 W
Course: South West Speed: 3 knots
Wind: South East, F2-4 – light air to moderate breeze
Sea: moderate Swell: negligible
Weather: overcast, showers
Day’s run: 85 nm

For much of yesterday afternoon the wind was light from the south west. Fortunately the seas were smooth so we were able to keep the sails full and drawing despite the lightness of the breeze. However, the air was a headwind, so for much of the day we tacked back and forth going sideways relative to our desired heading, more than forwards. Later in the evening the wind gradually backed into the south east allowing us to ease sheets and maintain the rhumb line course.

At two this morning the wind freshened and our speed climbed from two knots to six, then come dawn it freshened further, requiring a reef in the mainsail and for the genoa to be partially furled. The day was looking promising to provide a good day’s sail and I was in good spirits, but this is the tropics in the South West Pacific, one of the most frustrating pieces of ocean I have sailed. A series of rain squalls passes over us. With each squall we get a nice breeze, in between we get light airs with a residual short choppy sea, to which Sylph dances and gyrates, sails shaking and slatting, and, as you can probably tell from the above, rather getting on my nerves.

Nonetheless, we are getting there. Exactly when we will get there, however, is another thing entirely, to which I will no longer hazard a guess.

350 nm to Fiji.

All is well.