25:21:65N 20:21:10W

ARC 2014 Blog for Yacht 'Jo'
Ted Watts/ Mark Watts
Wed 26 Nov 2014 15:44

Wednesday 26th November

Beef burgers with roll and salad for dinner last night; not bad considering how badly the boat was pitching. We will now need to go on a marathon banana eating binge as approximately 40 bananas are all ripening exceedingly quickly! Same goes for the pairs and avocados

We managed 178 Nm yesterday; hoping for a similar tally today. The shame is the fleet are spreading outwards rapidly. After sunset we could only see 4 boats around us.

Started grading rubbish today: I won’t bore you with the details, but having thrown away all extraneous packaging back in port, there’s still a great deal which has to be stashed somewhere!

Although we can’t judge (easily) where we are in relation to the rest of the fleet, it’s our guess that we’ve taken a northern mid route. The boat (and ourselves) are settling into a bit of a routine and things are getting easier. I wish I could say the same about the lack of sleep. Monday was a very disturbed night as the conditions were sloppy without enough wind. Every wave would shake the rigging, so we resorted to the engine to ease the problem.

Last night, in between the clouds, we all enjoyed star watching as the boat silently scudded along at a steady and pleasant 8-9 knots with the bio-luminesce of plankton providing yet another firework display. Thankfully we all got a better night’s sleep; the rocking motions of the boat our lullaby.

This morning we caught a Mahi Mahi fish on the ‘never fail’ tuna lure. We were doing about 8 knots at the time we caught it, which made the logistics of landing it interesting! We furled the headsail, and let out the main which reduced our speed to 6 knots; we were all reluctant to stop the boat for a fish.  Alastair and I then battled for 15-20 minutes pumping the rod and winding the real, certain in the knowledge that it was nothing less than a Marlin or small Sailfish of probably 50lbs; we could even see his sail and bill and one time. Having got the fish to the rear of the boat we saw it was a regular Mahi Mahi of approximately 4-5Kg – enough for the four of us. The sea was pitching and I wasn’t clipped on, so I was anxious not to step onto the stern sugar scoop. I thought it would be an easy enough task to lift him on board using the boathook as a gaff. After 3 failed attempts we did at least manage to get the fish onto the sugar scoop, which only upset him more and after a few shakes of his head he was free of the hook and gracefully slid back into the water, waving goodbye!

First boat failure today; the skippers heads (WC), HELP!  I must have spent 20 minutes bailing out macerated excrement whilst the crew had their second dolphin sighting. One toilet now between 4 guys for the next 2 weeks; OMG!!!! Keeping up the regime of charging the batteries every day, which takes less time than we calculated; only 2 hours per day rather than 4, which means more fuel for motoring should we need to.


George and Ian on the high seas                                                         Mark wrestling with Mahi Mahi