Day 5: decision time

Sat 1 Dec 2012 14:18
Hi all!
The ‘Atlantic gurus’ Haico and Rob are still amazed by how many boats we still see every day on the horizon, early this morning there was again one on our stern! And again we had a good 24-hour run, of 211 nm. Haico cannot almost not believe it, he just has to admit that Rob’s new boat is actually pretty fast as well.
Today Nanno has been checking new weather forecasts again and runs them through our routing software. At this point we have a very clear decision to make, because a new area of low pressure appears to be forming between us and St. Lucia, which will then bring (very) light winds directly in our path.
The software showed two suggestions: either go more north of west today and see if we can sail around the north of it, OR keep going more south of west (as we do now) and sail around the south of it. So where we had to make some smaller decisions in the first two days, this decision means a lateral distance (most north vs most south) of almost 700 nautical miles!!!
Even more amazing though is the calculated difference between the two options: just 3 hours on something like 10 days...!!!
So what shall we do? The northern route is the faster one but also with the most risk. And as we are all true racing sailors on board there is then still that other very important argument to consider: where will it be warmer? So yes, you have guessed it already, we will stick to the southern option!
Regular life and maintenance also continues on board. All our supplies are stowed in different places, we have one cabinet for instance with the ‘Dutch’ food, another one for the “Italian’ food, and there is fruuit and drinks absolutely everywhere. The aft shower is our main ‘shed’ from which we keep re-filling the other smaller cabinets and refrigerator, and sometimes we have to go forward to our ‘supermarket’ (the sail cabin where we keep our largely packed items such as water bottles).
This morning Rob went for some shopping there and came back with a bonus: a 30cm long flying fish! The poor bastard must have flow against our cutter sail and was left on the foredeck. Not interested in eating it, we spreaded its wings and threw it away. It was clear that Rob no longer has a good throwing arm, since the fish didn’t so much fly anymore but more it just fell into the sea...
Leeway crew