Day 107 Thurs-Fri 17-18 Jan 2019 Good progress East - at last!

Thursday 2:30pm Underway, at last, headed ESE towards 40S in W wind. Expecting wind to back to SW by morning, as Cold Front moves E. Seas still very big but feel so much kindlier when headed downwind.

Friday 1:45am Wind suddenly came up half an hour ago... We increasingly picked up speed until making well over 7kt. To my relief, although we frequently surfed on a wave to 8-9 kt, we did not seem to go any faster. The wind noise in the rigging was loud - wind probably around 30kt, gusting higher at times. I forced myself to leave the speed display and lie down to relax and close my eyes! I wanted to keep going E, if possible, rather than heaving to again - progress has been so slow since Cape Horn.

5:30am Daylight ... and seas still very steep but in slightly less wind, from SSW now - 20-25kt? Still strong conditions but nice to be making a good amount of Easting at 6 kt. Back to my bunk.

9am Unfurled some genoa - speed had dropped in maybe 15-20kt wind from SSW but we were soon back up to 6kt. Sun trying to get out, seas still big.

Spending a lot of my time thinking about practicalities of removing sail and bringing down below for repair - very complicated and not a task I'm looking forward to. Trying to look ahead to possible problems I'll need to overcome and figure out ways to make it easier, if that's possible... Pondering best way to make repair itself, as well. Options really depend on contents of my spares lockers and I might not have the very best choice possible since have no 5200 on board, unfortunately. But I do have Gorilla tape! Fingers crossed, that will stick to the salty sail... I'll be checking to see if on-deck repair is at all feasible...

3pm Ambling along in gentler winds - 12kt? - from W-WSW under mainly sunny sky - very pleasant! Have been increasing the genoa as the wind has died down and backed again - making around 5kt now.

5pm Lovely to see a couple of albatross flying close by - they've been missing for a bit - one a juvenile - kept coming really close - no camera to hand... Also other birds - petrels, prions and shearwaters. Seas not calmed down enough - still quite rough - so they enjoy the uplift they get from the waves, despite the lighter wind.

Looking out now for a Spectacled petrel - endemic to these waters alone, not far from Tristan da Cunha and nearby Gough Island - incredible for its wilderness and birdlife

1900GMT (=1700LT) - end of Day 107. We made 119 n.ml. DMG over the 24 hr period, measured in a straight line between the two 1900 GMT positions.

Total distance covered from Victoria, B.C., to end of Day 107 (by daily DMGs): 10,195 n.ml.

Distances (at 1900Z): Cape Horn LH: 1780 n.ml. to SW; Montevideo: 1301 n.ml to W; Buenos Aires: 1407 n.ml to W Rio de Janeiro: 1243 n.ml. to NNW; Cape Agulhas LH (SA): 2354 n.ml. to ENE

Position & weather report, for 1900 GMT, posted to Winlink.org and Shiptrak.org (using my US callsign KC2IOV):

TIME: 2019/01/18 19:00GMT LATITUDE: 39-32.87S LONGITUDE: 029-30.82W COURSE: 090T SPEED: 4.8kt

WIND_SPEED: 12kt WIND_DIR: W SWELL_DIR: SW SWELL_HT: 3.5m CLOUDS: 80%

BARO: 1014.7hPa TREND: 0 AIR_TEMP: 22.0C SEA_TEMP: 20.0C

COMMENT: Wind down Seas very big still

Written by : Jeanne Socrates