Lots of Motoring

Where Next?
Bob Williams
Tue 25 May 2021 03:36

Noon Position: 32 26.3 S 152 37.5  E
Course: SW  Speed: 3 knots
Wind: NW, F3   Sea: slight   Swell: E 2 meters
Weather: sunny, mild
Day’s run: 95nm

The SE breeze forecast for yesterday afternoon and last night never really kicked in. We had a few small squalls go through which had me reefing down as they approached and motoring in the calm they leave behind them. In the evening the wind teased me. We managed to sail for a couple of hours until we got to the aptly named Tacking Point. The East Australia Current tends to flow strongly past this headland and while the current was in our favour for heading south it nonetheless produced a confused sea that had the sails slatting heavily in the light air. At 2330 I admitted defeat, furled the  jib, put a reef in the main, and flashed up the BRM.

And we have been mostly motoring since then. I tried sailing a few times in a light air but each time the swell and sea would throw Sylph off course, the sails slatting as Sylph rolled and hobby horsed.

But now, at last, we are sailing. As we approached Seal Rocks, the seas had smoothed considerably, though a two meter swell is still rolling in from the east, and the breeze proved to be just strong enough to keep some pressure in the sail preventing them from crashing about beyond tolerable limits.

I am confident that the remainder of the forecast will be more accurate, with a 15 to 20 knot NE’ly picking up ahead of a fresh SW’ly change tomorrow afternoon. At least with all this motoring, our ETA for Port Jackson looks good for tomorrow around midday – hopefully a little sooner as midday might be cutting it a bit fine for getting in before the southerly change.

All is well.