Day 188 – Windy

Where Next?
Bob Williams
Sun 19 Jun 2022 05:31
Noon Position: 34 41.5 S 124 34.3 E
Course: E Speed: 6.5 knots
Wind: WSW Force 7
Sea: rough Swell: SW 3m
Weather: overcast, mild
Day’s Run: 134 nm

Another front passed over last night at 2250 with the wind increasing suddenly and backing into the SW. I was sitting in the companionway dressed and ready for action at the time watching the cloud roll in, wondering whether there was anything in it or not, as most clouds pass over with perhaps only a moderate increase in wind. However, in this instance the increase was dramatic and had Sylph tearing through the waves at probably around eight knots, though I didn’t get a chance to look at the GPS or log to check our speed as I was too busy reducing sail.
I soon had Sylph down to a more controllable three reefs and 50% jib poled out to port. The new wind direction had Sylph running off to the NE, not quite the right direction but initially I was not sure whether the change was just a squall passing over or a more permanent shift due to the passage of a front. So, rather than gybing I decided to wait and see for a bit.
Well, having gotten comfortable below the wait and see ended up being until 0930 this morning when I decided that yes, the shift was probably permanent and it was high time I put my foul weather gear back on, got on deck and gybed Sylph round on to her proper course. That has been done and the headsail reduced a little more as the wind has picked up somewhat this forenoon.
According to my latest weather faxes, we will not be having anymore fronts pass over us until Friday, by which time if we continue to make good progress we should be inside Investigator Strait and on the home stretch heading up the Gulf of St Vincent. I don’t think we will beat the next front into port but we should at least be in more sheltered waters by then.
685 miles to go.
All is well.