Day 168 Tues-Wed 18-19 March 2019 Not a lot of Easting made today - East wind won't allow it!

Wednesday 2:10am Been studying latest weather update - seems we're going to be in the path of another cyclone around 28-29th March - will try to get well enough ahead of it to be safely clear but quite likely that we won't be able to, in which case we'll be delayed several days more by having to heave to well W of its path until it has passed by - curses!!!

Presently making 2.5kt in light SE wind on a NE course, having got under way after drifting in no wind for several hours overnight. Full moon lighting up the overcast sky, giving a twilight good enough to see by when I was on deck earlier.

9am Confused seas from change of wind direction - old and new swells mixing... Grey overcast - decks wet from recent rain. Heeling often, quite a lot. Trying to head NE - should be a beam reach but actually slightly upwind heading, due to leeway, so beating - banging into seas - not a very comfortable point of sail and, unfortunately, sewing of mainsail will have to wait for better conditions... Making 2.3kt, occasionally getting up to 3kt.

5:40pm Well, we're not making much progress today - an E wind is not at all helpful when you're trying to head E! Having headed NNE this morning and part of this afternoon, in a light SE-ESE wind, we gybed a short while ago onto port tack to head, I hoped, just E of S. But we struggled not to head W (backwards!) for a time, although a little better now - although only just, since we're making 165-170T - so not making much distance to E. Hardly surprising but still frustrating!

I'm also feeling frustrated because I'd really hoped to get some more mainsail sewing done today. The fine rain seems to have finally stopped and I could now be doing some sewing - the deck is not moving quite so much in the seas and is drying out. But the sail is too well tied down and it would take a time to release it ready for sewing (and then it must be tied away again) - and the light is rapidly beginning to fade as the sun sets behind a lot of dark grey clouds - I thought they were clearing away but the blue patch of sky I saw earlier disappeared.

6pm Back with Fred in charge and he's doing just fine - we're on a close reach, still heading slightly E of S at 2-3kt. I'm getting my evening meal ready - chicken and potatoes with sweetcorn... Early to sleep, in the hope of a good sewing day tomorrow...

1900GMT (=2400LT) - end of Day 168. We made very little 'distance made good' today - just 29 n.ml. DMG, over the 24 hr period, measured in a straight line between the two 1900 GMT positions. (Actual distance travelled was 58 n.ml. but in a 'v' due to gybing...!)

Total distance covered from Victoria, B.C., to end of Day 168 (by daily DMGs):14,832 n.ml.

Distances (at 1900GMT): Cape Leeuwin LH (SW Australia): 2148n.ml. to ENE; Melbourne (VIC, Aus): 3305 n.ml. to E; SE Cape,Tasmania,LH: 3341 n.ml. to ESE; SW Cape, NZ: 3867 n.ml to ESE; Cape Agulhas LH (S.Africa): 2354 n.ml. to WNW; Kerguelen Isl: 377 n.ml. to SE; St Paul Isl: 407 n.ml.to ENE; Halfway point (55 18'E): 652 n.ml. astern

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

TIME: 2019/03/20 19:00GMT LATITUDE: 42-27.36S LONGITUDE: 070-02.13E COURSE: 142T SPEED: 2.3kt

WIND_SPEED: 10kt WIND_DIR: ENE SWELL_DIR: E SWELL_HT: 3.0m CLOUDS: 100%

BARO: 1021.5hPa TREND: 0 AIR_TEMP: 18.0C SEA_TEMP: 20.0C

COMMENT: Thin cloud cover - full moon shining brightly above - lighting up sky

Written by : Jeanne Socrates