Day 61 – Loitering Off Port Stan ley, Falkland Islands

Where Next?
Bob Williams
Sat 12 Feb 2022 18:35
Noon Position: 51 39.4 S 057 38.3 W
Course: NW Speed: 6 knots
Wind: SW, F7 Sea: moderate
Swell: W 1 meters
Weather: sunny periods, cool
Day’s Run: 152 nm

At 2100, with the wind veering more into the NW, we had to drop the pole and return to our heavy weather reaching rig, with triple reefed mainsail and 30% headsail. At 0030 we rounded Sea Lion Islands on the SE corner of East Falkland Island. We then worked our way up the east coast trying to get in reasonably close to obtain some shelter from the strong NW wind, but only with moderate success. We have now sailed past Port Stanley and positioned ourselves off the NE coast with a view to waiting for the forecast 40 knot winds. In fact they are kicking in about now and we remain under a triple reefed mainsail and 20% jib to try and remain reasonably close to the coast. The winds are expected to moderate towards evening when we will resume our route to the NE.
I spoke with Coconut this morning and am very pleased to report that Mark has passed the Horn and is now sheltering as best he can in the vicinity of the Wollaston Group. His estimated position at 1130 Sylph’s local time (1730 UTC) was 55 30S 066 15 W, drifting under bare poles with his tyre drogue streamed, making good a course of NE at two to three knots. His plan is to loiter in the area and try to seek shelter from further 50 knot SSW winds forecast for tomorrow morning behind Staten Island. I was certainly relieved to hear Mark’s voice come up on this morning’s radio sched. He has done very well to weather the extreme conditions without any serious mishap (only a broken self-steering wind vane which he has spares for) and then get Coconut into the relative shelter behind the Wollaston Islands, particularly as he was relying on sextant, compass and log for navigation.
I forgot to mention that Sylph moved to time zone +4 a couple of days ago.
All is well.