Tuesday, 31 December 2013


Averaging about 150nm per day. Kite up for longest straight run ever. The seas are good, about half a meter and wind pretty steady ESE 10 to 12 with occasional gusts or lulls.
We are still struggling with the settings on the new AP55 TMQ Auto pilot. We always said the old AP 50 TMQ was the most reliable piece of equipment on the boat but the jury is out on the AP55. The manual suks.
The kicker which holds the spinnaker pole down, broke on David's shift last night when a shackle shattered but it was OK and we didn't have to remedy it til this morning. "Jigsaw" is about 30 NM abeam of us and we are keeping regular HF scheds with them. 

At 8pm Monday we have 1383nm to F d N.
All well and happy aboard as we approach the end of 2013. We would like to wish you all a great big fat Happy New Year and healthy wealthy and wise 2014!... or just have a great night and sink a few for us! 

Well its 8.00pm Tuesday 31st December. Friends everywhere are celebrating the incoming year and we wish we were there! Its a long way from any party out here although we will call Jigsaw on the HF and play some rousing party music while we down a glass of wine to welcome in 2014. 
Seas haven't improved and we are still wandering along with just the poled out head sail and main. Our last 24 hour run was 156 nm and we expect the next to be slower. Jigsaw are edging ahead now that we have dropped the kite. 
Seas are around 2M and wind is gusty SSE from 10 to 25 in short sharp blows. Its mostly overcast but warm. Course around 310. No fish. No line in the water either!!
Here's to 2014! Cheers 

For lack of something else to do we decided to fly the kite again yesterday afternoon. It was all good and we decided then to leave it up again overnight. Averaging 8.3Kn was great and a welcome change but at 3.30am the pole gave up and bent like a banana. All hell broke loose!! (and a few other things) In an instant we were laying on our side with the mast in the water and the kite set well forward and dragging us to leeward. Not exciting... but not boring!. We had to cut the brace line to windward which de-powered the kite and enabled the mast to resume a more acceptable angle so we could regaining control of the steering. 

At this point we were unsure what the sudden bang prior to the broach was. A quick trip forward revealed the reason and then we set about pacifying the autopilot and then untangling the mess around the inner fore-stay. It took about half an hour to get the spinnaker untangled and snuffed then bought down and bagged.

So now we are going really slow with no pole to pole out the headsail. David says he can repair it! We will see! 
Some trivia.. at 8 knots we are moving about 18ton of water every 3 seconds!! 
No fish, no ships, nothing!
Wind SSE 10Kn, Sea 1m Cloudy. 

1200 UTC Monday
06 27S
025 47E
424 to F d N
Pleasant sailing.. in the wrong direction..hoping for that promised wind shift to east!!
CRS 276 6Kn Wind SE 12 to 15kn. Sea 1.5M
Comfortable without a pole.
No fish, no ships, no rubbish.
Thanks all for your emails
All well.

The past 24 hours have nearly been another record for slow. 132 NM and struggling with wind angle and very light. 6 to 9kn ESE. Even with those miles we motored at 5kn for most of the night. Needing to preserve fuel because we have another 2000 NM to go after F d N and cannot expect fuel there.
312 NM to F d N, Pos at 1100 UTC, 06 03S, 027 39W

Its 10 am UTC and we have 50 NM to run to Fernando de Narohna. Today we have nice ENE wind at 10 kn and have the MPS flying nicely making around 6.5KN so hope to arrive into the anchorage where Jigsaw are waiting for us, before dark. 

Tomorrow we will cut the pole down and replace the beak so we will have a usable but shortened version for the rest of the trip. If all goes well there we will rest for a few days and decide where to go next! Forteliza 350NM on the north coast of Bazil, Trinadad 1920 NM, Barbados 1920 NM or Grenada 1920 NM or St Martin 2200NM. So many decisions!! 

We are not planning to clear into Fernando as the fees are reportedly extortionate. We have heard figures in the $400 range and we don't know any yachts who have gone there and cleared in recently. It is a big Brazilian tourist destination apparently. Australians must have a visa before they arrive in Brazil and we don't have one so will just be using the rest and repair rule!! 

No fish again!!. 1 Ship and no rubbish.