The Alba Chronicles
Neville Howarth
Wed 7 Mar 2018 09:19



10:52S 21:53W


So far we've done 1,370 miles with 440 miles to go to Jacaré, Brazil. We did 120 miles in the last 24 hours.  We have 10% cloud cover and 8-12 knot ESE winds.  We’re sailing wing-on-wing doing 4 to 5 knots with a 1 metre swell. Here's what we did yesterday and overnight.


6 March 2018   St Helena to Brazil (Day 11)

By day break, the wind had veered enough that we had to gybe the genoa pole – we’re getting faster with all this practise.  The weather forecast shows continuing ESE to E winds, maybe a knot or two higher at times over the next 3 days, so we’re hoping that we can keep our average speed above 5.3 knots and make it to Jacaré before sunset on Saturday 10th.


Glenys has been taking sunrise photos every morning and has been trying to come up with a variety of images -  silhouettes of the arch, shots of the sail with a shadow of the wind generator, shots from the bow, etc.  She must have been very bored this morning because today’s shot has the silhouette of an elephant marching across the horizon...


On my daily walk around the deck, I found that the “lazy” sheet on the genoa has been too tight and has been pressing against the staysail.  It’s been rubbing for 24 hours and has worn through and ripped some of the UV protection strip on the staysail.  It will only take us a few hours to patch it when we get to Jacaré, but I’m kicking myself for not noticing it sooner.  It’s so important to make sure that nothing is chafing on these long passages, when sails are not changed very often.


I’ve developed some kind of sore on my left big toe. I thought at first that it had been rubbing on the nail of the toe next to it, but upon closer examination there seem to be a few things that look like blisters and it’s painful to touch.  It might be some kind of fungal infection, but we’re not sure.  We don’t have any cream for fungal infections, so last night I slapped on some Triple Anti-biotic cream and covered it with a plaster. 


This morning it looked a bit worse and the skin around it looked “soggy” after being covered, so I’ve cleaned it with Betadine and will leave it open to the air.  We still have another 4 or 5 days at sea until we can get to a doctor or pharmacy, so I hope that it doesn’t get any worse.  I’d hate to die from an infected toe.


I put the fishing lines out, but no joy again.  The afternoon was frustratingly slow and we had to gybe before dinner.  The wind picked up a little on my 7-10 watch, but dropped off again in the early hours of the morning.