Gorgeous Intro to Trade Winds

tony zwig
Tue 17 Apr 2007 00:23

Hello Everybody,
Today we saw the wind cross from NW to NE meaning we are meeting the Trade Winds which is our objective and will carry us on a broad reach hopefully into Hawaii. We are sailing a bit by the lee though trying to get south of the 1020 isobar line to stay with the windier area and are having to head up a bit to keep from gybing. We'll look at the grib weather maps which show these pressure gradients and wind in detail to determine if we should perhaps gybe south now,which would be unorthodox. It
seems silly to gybe for shifts over 1000 miles from the destination, but we'll see. Things have calmed down and we're now doing 7.5-8 knots in 17 knots apparent wind instead of the 9.67 plus in 25-31 knots the last few days. We are 25% of the way to Hawaii. I am reading Paul Theroux's Hotel Honolulu to get into the mood. Very funny and good.
Last night Robert made white fish with lemon; also very good. Richard is feeling himself now and is tonight's cook. We had a problem where the igniter wouldn't work on the stove. It seems when the stove swung out on the gimble it pulled out the wire energizing the igniter. Thom and Tony figured it out and fixed it. (Well, Tony held the flashlight anyway).
Last night I was alone in the cockpit at 4am listening to Eric Clapton mixing with the sounds of the wind and water rushing by in the dark. As is said today; very cool. We are being more adept at conserving battery power so they are now sitting at 75% (instead of 55% the first 2 days). We have been making water the last couple of days; very cool. Richard did a masterful job whipping(as in repairing) our damaged 2nd reef line which we will have to nurse until we can replace in Hawaii.
This morning I noticed at 6am it was still dark when this is supposed to be a sunrise shift. We have travelled far enough west that we are now shifting our 'local' time back one hour from LA time. That should fix the sunrise issue. It is important; because it is the reward for getting up to start a watch at 4am.
Robert opened the cinema today. He had the pick of seats and alone watched Blood Diamond. It never ceases to amaze me that no matter how often I am on the ocean with a totally blank horizon and just rocking with the boat motion, how captivating the "empty" vista is.

We are being safe; we are all wearing our life jackets and harnesses tethered to the boat when on deck at night. I just overheard Robert telling cook Richard that he only needs to make a half portion for me; I have to find what this is about.
Hopefully more pix soon.