Rainy Days and Sundays 22:38:39N 29:25:56W

Zipadedoda of Dart
David H Kerr
Mon 26 Nov 2007 04:04

It has been a challenging day today. The winds have been variable and quite exciting when rainstorms brew. What seems to happen in the area in front of a rain storm is an (almost) predictable sequence. Note that these storms are travelling in the same direction as we are. Only much faster!


First of all the wind dies, and at around the same time the sea lumps up and becomes confused. This makes life on board very uncomfortable. With the sails banging around and the boat lurching from one side to the other, then throwing in the odd cock screw motion. Usually just as you are climbing the companion way stairs with a cup of tea!!


Then an air pressure wave arrives, without warning. Two things then happen. The seas become relatively calm. Then the boat takes off like an express train. Very exhilarating, and a little scary. A 25 tonne food larder, surfing down waves in a not all together predictable way at 9 knots. Well it does it for me!!!




Some of these storm clouds come with dramatic rainbows. These are almost as difficult to photograph as Dolphins……………..


Today it was my turn to me Net Controller. This involves about one and a half hours on the SSB radio in the morning. First of all, checking to see if all the Boats are OK. Then reading out the weather forecast, that Rally Control e-mails to the Net Controller each morning. This is then followed by a role call of each yacht to determine their positions and local weather. Finally this is opened to a chat session on the many allocated SSB radio channels. It is all quite tedious, and the boats have to help each other relaying messages. That is because the fleet is all spread out and 1000 in the morning is not an ideal time to be using SSB radios for technical reasons. We then have another safety and chat session at 1800. It is all very time consuming. Not just the Net itself, but the preparation and sending the assembled data to Rally Control. Mercifully I will only have to do it once a week, but that said I did enjoy the excuse to have a natter and a bit of fun. With Jennie’s assistance, I played the opening sequence to Pink Floyd “Time” at the start of the broadcast. That got everyone’s attention!


As it is very tiring typing on these rolling seas, I will sign off now………………..