Day 190 – SA Time

Where Next?
Bob Williams
Tue 21 Jun 2022 03:32
Noon Position: 34 52.0 S 130 12.6 E
Course: E Speed: 6 knots
Wind: W Force 4
Sea: moderate Swell: SW 2.5m
Weather: mostly sunny, mild
Day’s Run: 144 nm

With a high pressure system starting to dominate the weather, I was hoping for a peaceful and restful night but this was not to be. The wind gradually picked up during the evening and at 2150 I rolled up some headsail. At 0100 I put a second reef in the main. At 0350 it started to rain, along with a wind shift into the SW requiring further trimming of sails. And the new wind direction put us onto a more NE”ly heading, almost at right angles to the swell causing Sylph roll sharply. By 0430 the wind had eased again and, I am pleased to say, veered back into the west. Sylph’s speed had dropped off so I set full sail. Then, at 0605, the wind picked up again requiring a reef in the main again. Still, what sleep I did get was mostly comfortable which is always something to be grateful for in a small vessel on the open ocean.
Now we are under full sail again, the clouds have burnt off, and the sun is shining in a blue sky. The sunshine is putting a few amps back into the batteries and with the calmer conditions I have been able to run the genset, though it is still running rather rough. Unfortunately the batteries have gotten so low that I would need to run the genset for about two days to get them fully charged again, so we really need to plug into shore power to get them topped up again. But it is only a few days to go until we can connect Sylph to a shore umbilical and then hopefully we might be able to recover the batteries before they are completely sulphated. At least with the sunshine and the genset we should be able to keep them sufficiently charged to keep Sylph’s essential systems going, including the obligatory blog post, until we get alongside.
Yesterday evening I took advantage of the relatively calm condition to climb to the masthead once more to inspect the worrisome split pin. I am pleased to say that it looks in good shape.
We crossed the South Australian border last night (or at least its projection south into the ocean) and have advanced clocks 1 ½ hours to SA time, our final time zone change for the voyage.
420 miles to go.
All is well.