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6th August 2017 - sailing, finally .... but in fickle wind...

Sunday 6th August 2017

It's been grey, cold and dismal all day, with lumpy seas later on knocking us about. No sunshine!

Winds were fairly light until early afternoon, so we made reasonable progress under motor directly towards Cape Flattery, waiting for the wind to increase, as forecast...

The highlight of the day has been finally getting sailing, with the motor turned off, although we've had to bear off the wind & come away from our rhumb-line course towards the Strait of Juan de Fuca to get up a decent speed. Even now, the wind is gusty and seems to have veered more to the N (which, of course, is near our preferred direction!). As a result, we're headed towards the coast just S of Cape Johnson, well over 30 miles S of Flattery.

As we get closer, the wind could well change direction and, if one forecast is correct, it might die right down, so we could end up motoring again. If the wind doesn't die down, we'll just have to tack away out to sea again.

Being so much closer inshore, just over 20 miles off, has the disadvantage of being more in traffic. Just now, there are six big ships within 18 miles of us - and that's not counting any smaller fishing vessels that are not transmitting on AIS - there were several of those offshore last night. I might not get much sleep tonight....

It's nice to see the Superwind wind generator working well now - despite navigation lights and instruments etc I'm generally seeing a net charge into the batteries - without a lot of noise. There had been a simple bad connection that was attended to in SF.

10 p.m. A lull in the wind - dropped to 11 kt, now up to 14-16kt again. Boat speed suffers when that happens - it's varying a lot. Maybe the wind has already started to die?

Written by : Jeanne Socrates