16:37:79N 53:20:18W

ARC 2014 Blog for Yacht 'Jo'
Ted Watts/ Mark Watts
Mon 8 Dec 2014 18:07

Monday 8th December 2014

How Samuel Pepys did this for all those years I don’t know! One thing is for sure, even though he was pre the internet, more happened in London then, than happens in the middle of the Atlantic now! No dolphins, no whales: just flying fish and a new one; sea weed. Actually we saw that for the first time a few days ago, but I was holding back on it in case we needed a lead story! We’d (no pun intended) like to know where it comes from? Experts as we are in sea weed, our first guess was the Sargasso Sea, however, the currents we are experiencing are from the south and the Sargasso Sea lies to the north, hmmm.

There are no fish in this sea or else I’d have caught them on a daily basis, right? We’re using squid type lures on the surface and 3’ down but still no joy. Are the fish around here more intelligent than the usual varieties at home? The guys and the fish are laughing at me – anyone any pointers? We’ve tried fishing at all sorts of speeds, but generally 5 – 7 knots boat speed. HOLD THE PRESS: REAL TIME NEWS: we’ve obviously just gone through a shoal of some type of fish (see picture below) as we’ve simultaneously caught one on each line. We really need another two between four of us so will keep trying until dinner. Looks like a relative of the tuna looking at its tail fin. It’s most distinctive marking which you can’t see in the photo is a dark stripe from the eye back to the dorsal fin. In case anyone recognises this as a deadly poisonous variety, we will be sitting down to eat it at about 19:00 hrs  your time and I’ll do a send/ receive before then – just in case!


This morning we celebrated a sub 500 nm distance to travel with Galette type pancakes made by Alastair. They were heartily appreciated and they gave us an opportunity to get rid of a lemon or two. We’re now at that stage in the proceedings where we’re trying to match fresh food to conventional recipes and sometimes coming up with interesting alternative uses. That said, the only fruit left are apples, oranges and lemons and the only vegetables left are potatoes and onions. We continue to dine like kings and had pork casserole and melon for desert. Tonight is another chicken Provencal (or maybe the fish), as we still have the luxury of frozen mince, pork, chicken and burgers left. Am I obsessing about food! Maybe, but there’s little else to occupy us at the moment!

Last night was highly entertaining: it started raining; really raining. We all had one thing in mind and leapt on deck in our swimming trunks and started lathering up. Health and safety would have had a field day. There we were slipping around on the coach roof trying to catch the water collected by the mainsail, coming out of holes in the boom without lifejackets. Needless to say we were all fine and a hell of a lot fresher afterwards.

Lighter winds and sunshine today have seen us playing with various sail combinations and trying to dry everything that was soaked by rain yesterday.


 I have been working particularly hard at getting the large gennaker to fly!