The Alba Chronicles
Neville Howarth
Fri 5 Sep 2014 18:41



12:19S 163:47W


So far, we've done 404 miles with 496 miles to go to Samoa. We’re on a broad reach with 15-20 knots of wind and 6-8 foot seas.  We’ve got 80% cloud cover with showers lurking about. Here's what we did yesterday and overnight.


4 September 2014 Penrhyn to Apia, Samoa ( Day 3)

The weather stayed a bit grotty during the morning, with 75% cloud cover and showers constantly around us.  I downloaded our weather emails and the SPCZ is right over us at the moment.  Hopefully it will bugger off tonight and give us a bit of peace for a couple of days.


So far, I've not been doing very well with fishing.  I caught a small, one-meal Jack yesterday, but I've lost two big Dorado and, this morning, I hooked  a big swordfish of some kind.  My reel screamed as the fish took the line.  I saw it make a couple of huge leaps from the water before it snapped the 80lb wire leader and disappeared with my lure.


Just before midday, a huge weather system hit us, giving heavy rain for half an hour, accompanied by rapid changes in the wind direction and strength, gusting to 30 knots at one point - not very nice at all.  The miserable weather continued until late afternoon, when the sky slowly cleared and the wind settled down. 


We altered course mid-afternoon  - I think that we've gone south enough and we're now on a course of 250M heading directly for Samoa.  The change in course has put us dead downwind, so  I rigged up our spinnaker pole to port and poled out the genoa. 


As night fell, we had a steady 15 knot wind from the ENE and a lovely clear sky.  We had a fabulous sail overnight in settled conditions, rolling downwind.  The wind slowly veered around to the south east, so Glenys gybed the genoa in the early hours of the morning.  By daylight, we were romping along on a broad reach with 80% cloud cover and showers surrounding us again.