The Alba Chronicles
Neville Howarth
Sat 28 Jan 2017 02:25



08:20S   135:08E


So far we've done 268 miles with 137 miles to go. We did 157 miles in the last 24 hours.  We’ve got 80% clouds and 20 knot ENE winds.  We’re on a starboard reach with 2 metre seas.   We beat our predicted position this morning, so the Boat Polar isn’t too bad – we’ll probably have to slow down tonight to make sure that we arrive in Port Blair at dawn.  Here's what we did yesterday and overnight.


23 January 2017 Nai Harn Bay Phuket to Port Blair, Andaman Islands (Day 3)

At 07:00, we had less than 140 miles to go, so there was no rush and we had a relaxing day without having to push the boat too hard.   It was pleasant weather with 80% cloud cover and a 15 knot wind from the ENE putting us on a nice reach. 


To the west of Port Blair, there’s a sea mount called Invisible Bank that rises from 2,000 metres depth to less than 100 metres and in some places there are breaking rocks.  We wanted to give this a wide berth and the route calculated by qtVlm put us to the south of the danger, so I decided to follow the calculated route.  It meant that we’d have to turn 30 degrees further upwind at sunset, but I reckoned that it would be 60-70 degrees on the starboard tack, so would be okay.


I hadn’t noticed that the wind was slowly backing, so when we passed south of Invisible Bank and changed onto our new course directly for Port Blair, I found that that we were hard on the wind.  The actual wind direction was 20 degrees less than the GRIB files forecast, so my expected pleasant 60-70 degree close reach was a full-on 45 degree beat.  I was really cross with myself because we’d spent all day heading too far west.