Wednesday 27th June 2012
Good sailing overnight at over 6 knots consistently, with mainly clear skies until before dawn, when the entire sky became overcast and it became grey & rainy. No sooner had I finished a regular 9am radio 'sched' with 'Charisma' and got up on deck than I saw the wind increasing & tied in 2nd reef just before it got over 20knots, with some rain ... The ESE 20 kt wind continued on over the morning, finally reducing to 16kt mid-afternoon by which time the 90% cloudcover was light and broken. The wind has stayed ESE so we're still able to keep, or slightly improve on, our Easting.
We're definitely into the ITCZ now - satpics showed me that we were no longer headed into a nice gap - but straight into a big clump of cloud! I'm hoping for no big squalls in it. We'll take 2-3 days to get through this cloudy area, unless it decides to dissipate or move away.
Thre's an E-flowing Equatorial current now - quite strong, so helping us to stay East.
Hopefully, you'll see here the photo a friend in Tasmania sent me when I commented on the dawn sky and two possible planets in the E. John, VK7ZZ, happened to take this shot from his back door, overlooking the Derwent River, just S of Hobart, a few days before my comment - hence the waning crescent moon is also in the picture, whereas it was newly-appearing in the W at sunset the night before I saw the two planets at dawn -they're Venus and Jupiter, I'm told, Venus being the lower of the two and Aldebaran (in Taurus) is also in the shot, to the right.
Relaxed on deck having my food under moonlight - half-moon struggling through a light, broken cloud-layer - very pleasant , refreshing evening making good speed north in ESE wind...
DMG : 146 n.ml. Honolulu 1407 n.ml.