Dolphins and wind again!

Imagine of Plymouth
Wed 5 Dec 2007 15:35
After we caught a Mai Mai fish which was skilfully prepared for dinner by Mark, the squalls started again with lots of rain. However no wind and we decided to use the engine to get back in a wind zone which we could see on our weather chart. It was unfortunate having to motor but rolling in the atlantic with no wind is not fun either. Some people might wonder if we could have seen this no wind zone coming, NO we could not. The information we had suggested 10-15 knots. Reality was 5-10 knots in which this boat does not sail on a down wind angle. The sails hit the shrounds with such volocity that the is shakes the whole boat. We had another 1200 miles to go and did not want to break anything!
So we motored all throughout the night. Very boring altough many of us did get a very good night sleep. We motored along at approx 5.5 knots. Not to fast to save diesel. Funniest thing during the night was Robert, who was on watch, suddenly woke up and told us that he was dreaming about diesel powered far for paying attention to navigation, weather and shipping..............
When Mark and Rudy where on watch the sails where unfurled and speed quickly picked up. 30 min later and spinnaker was up. We where constalty sailing over 8 knots making good for time lost during the night. Chris woke up not very happy as the wheel steering bearings started to make a very loud creaking noise and it was ineed not very nice in the aft cabin. So whilst sailing downwind 8-10 knots Arthur took the aft locker apart finding out that access was via the compass!! Anyway it is now all fixed and we have a queit boat again. Hopefully Chris will be able to sleep this evening!
Arthur and Rudy swoped helming as it was very tiring in the 15-20ft Atlantic swell. It was awesome going down these waves especially when joined by dolphins who where jumping across our bow waves.
After 5 hours of spinnakering we had enough as the wind had increased to 20 knots which is the limit of the kite. A wonderfull ride and we averaged 8 plus knots!! flying! full respect for chris who managed to stay behind the laptop working away! also mark prepared a wonderfull lunch.
so now we have jib poled out again, doing 7 knots. we roll a lot more from side to side than without the spinnaker.
So we are all happy again after a frustrating night and hopefully the wind will stay with us. 1040 miles to go............
18 39 57N
043 25 83 W
heading 270
wind 16-18 knots from the east
have a nice day............
crew of imagine of plymouth.......