Day 220 Fri-Sat 10-11 May 2019 Several sail slides positioned in mast track before rain and increased wind arrived
Saturday morning started with increasing sun between broken cloud - by mid-morning, it was lovely and sunny, although still quite a bit of cloud around - very pleasant to be on deck.
Pancakes are becoming the standard breakfast now - with some mixed dried fruit and nuts on the side, to accompany them.
Wind from SW and still very light - mostly around 7kt, occasionally up to 10kt in a 'gust'and seas relatively calm at 3m/10ft and fairly well-spaced - so just occasional rolling around but enough to make working on deck a bit difficult at times.
Job of the day has been to try to get as many sail slides into the mast track as I can.
4pm Back down below - a bit damp from fine rain that just came in. Had to stop fighting the sail to get the sail slides far enough for'd to allow me to get them into their track in the mast and fold/tie the sail onto the boom instead, as the wind increased.
Managed to get several slides into the track, tying them together and to the secured head of the sail to keep them from sliding back down while I tried to get the next one into position in the track. A lot of tying and untying of bits of string, especially at the beginning, but now into less of that as more slides are dealt with.
It's becoming much more difficult as the job progresses, with a larger amount of sail needing to be pulled forward somehow to get the slide into position in the track before sliding it up and tying it off securely, ready to raise it with the others, using the halyard. Just now, I'm battling to move the second batten end - it didn't want to budge so I'll possibly need to wait for very light wind (to avoid the loosened sail blowing around) to give a lot more slack on the reef lines in order for it to be moved for'd enough.
Heating up a nice clam chowder that I recently found lurking on a galley shelf - a favourite of mine and ideal for this cold, damp weather, to warm me up.
4:30pm SSW wind at 20kt in rain - light fading early with grey rain clouds everywhere. Speed got up to around 5kt - lovely!
9pm Wind lessened soon after the rain clouds cleared away, surprisingly quickly, and sky is mainly clear with plenty of stars, a bright planet in the E and a waxing half moon shining from high up.
Making around 4kt but wind seems to be lessening. Looking at weather shows it's actually not a bad thing to be going rather slowly - will mean avoiding the strongest winds and gusts in the system coming along as we get closer to Stewart Island.
I'm wondering whether or not I can raise the small amount of mainsail available now. Need to look at it in daylight tomorrow, but it occurred to me that it might be just enough sail effectively to give a trysail equivalent or triple-reefed mainsail - ideal for strong conditions and would definitely be better than nothing, until we're in calm enough conditions again so I can try to get more slides in place. Might need a Cunningham of sorts but maybe not - doubt I can use the third reef luff line as a downhaul without that second batten end in place.
While sailing around the world, I'm trying to raise funds to help support the superb life-saving work done by the RNLI (Lifeboats) in Britain each and every day of the year, regardless how bad the weather. In fact, the worse it is, the more likely they are out there, helping someone in distress - whether a swimmer, surfer, small boat or big ship, night or day, summer or winter. They are all volunteers with normal day-jobs who respond immediately to a call and it is a charity - no government funding - so they rely on our help to fund their intensive training and maintain their equipment.
It would be great if you would take a moment to click on the Lifeboats link here (https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/Jeanne-Socrates2), if you'd like to show your support for my efforts at sailing solo, nonstop, unassisted around the globe, trying to set a World Record as the oldest person to do so, by donating something towards the great work the RNLI do every day. If a lot of people put in even a small amount, it all adds up... Thanks a lot! If you can help, it will be very much appreciated. Let's see if we can reach my target!
1900GMT (= 5 a.m. LT) - end of Day 220. We made 63 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 220 (by daily DMGs):18,969 n.ml.
Distances (at 1900GMT): SW Cape, NZ: 513 n.ml ESE; Cape Leeuwin LH (SW Australia): 1944 n.ml. to NW; SE Cape,Tasmania,LH: 316 n.ml. to WNW; Hobart 377 n.ml. to WNW; Melbourne (Victoria, Australia): 640 n.ml. NW.
Position & weather report for 1900 GMT posted to www.Winlink.org and www.Shiptrak.org (using my US callsign KC2IOV):
TIME: 2019/05/11 19:00GMT LATITUDE: 45-20.17S LONGITUDE: 155-22.76E
COURSE: 109T SPEED: 3.6kt
WIND_SPEED: 11kt WIND_DIR: WSWSWELL_DIR: WSW SWELL_HT: 3.5m CLOUDS: 5%
BARO: 1009.3hPa TREND: 0 AIR_TEMP: 15.0C SEA_TEMP: 15.0C
COMMENT: Starry night sky, few clouds. Wind not as strong as expected.