HAPPY FOURTH OF JULY to my US friends!
Thursday 9am NZT (Wed 2100 GMT) The wind was up in a gust to over 20kt but we're now creeping along in wind that has died down to 8-10kt, waiting for it to come back up. Today's forecast is a repeat of the last few days - SE-ESE at 20-25kt - so we're getting yet another 'cloud effect' in the present mainly cloudy conditions, it seems. Very frustrating - we're either under-canvassed in the lulls or just about coping OK in the gusts. Would be really nice to get more consistent winds to give better daily DMGs. Feeling the boat accelerate again as i write this, as we come into another gust and heel to the increase in wind...
Sunset and sunrise are getting increasingly early in the NZT (New Zealand Time) that I've kept to for some time now but it's very convenient being exactly 12hrs different from GMT and nice to be a day ahead! The next time change coming up is to Tahiti (French Polynesia) Time and will mean a 2hr change (to GMT-10hr) and 'losing' a day.
We're presently approaching French Polynesia so tomorrow I'll make the change - we'll be repeating 4th July!! It's one good reason to keep track of Nereida's date in GMT - that way it's clear what the date/time is, so there's no confusion.
3:30pm NZT Sun has just set - not much cloud around except on horizons now and it has been less rough today - feels more comfortable but still have to be careful moving around with the 4m/13ft swell.
5pm Wind up - gusting to 26kt, with possibility of gusting higher - so furled in some genoa to reduce excessive heeling.
A beautiful night - sky is so full of bright stars without the moon to dim them. Spent a time gazing around, listening to the noise of the wind in the rigging and then enjoying the night sky some more before retreating to the relative calm of the cabin. Surprising how much quieter it is down below, even with the hatch open to the cockpit - the storm screen clearly cuts down the noise a lot.
There's a lot of motion from the swell which does its usual job of tossing us around a lot in these increased conditions. Heading into the wind and seas, or being on a beam reach, resulting in beam seas, makes such a big difference compared with running downwind, which would feel quite pleasant by comparison.
Just got hit by a wave which broke over the coachroof and on to the port side deck - the result of big beam seas.... Glad I wasn't in the cockpit just then!
11:30pm Had a good radio session starting at 1030Z on 7163kHz with Jim, WB2REM, and other radio friends either directly over the HF rdio or partly using a cellphone 'patch' to Jim's remote. Lots of 'Happy Holidays!" exchanged.
Sky is dark and full of bright stars - no moon in sight.
Unfurled a bit more genoa - wind seems to be 20kt, maybe just under.
Friday 6am NZT (Thurs 1800 GMT) Wind up a little since sunrise - pretty rough again - being well tossed around. Made a course change last night - to around 030T now. Headed towards Iles Australes, just over a day away - good news since it means we should pass them in good daylight. Not sure I'll be close enough to see anything - they're small, low-lying atolls.
About to change ship's clock from New Zealand time to Tahiti time - 2hrs forward and one day back - so this change of local time puts us back into Fourth July a second time!!
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 (= 7 a.m. NZT) - end of Day 274. We made 111 n.ml. DMG, measured in a straight line between the two 1900GMT positions. Better!
Total distance covered from Victoria, B.C., to end of Day 274 (by daily DMGs):22,305 n.ml
Distances (at 1900GMT): East Cape, N.Z.: 1707 n.ml. to SW; Tahiti: 431 n.ml. to NNE; Tubuai (Iles Australes): 140 n.ml. to NE; Rurutu (Iles Australes):129 n.ml. to NNE.
Position, as posted to www.Winlink.org and www.Shiptrak.org (using my US callsign KC2IOV):
TIME: 2019/07/04 19:00GMT LATITUDE: 24-39.84S LONGITUDE: 151-39.80W
COURSE: 031T SPEED: 5.5kt
WIND_SPEED: 23kt WIND_DIR: ESE SWELL_DIR: ESE SWELL_HT: 4.0m CLOUDS: 30%
BARO: 1025hPa TREND: 0 AIR_TEMP: 21.0C SEA_TEMP: 28.0C
COMMENT: Wind gusted up at sunrise; being tossed around more than overnight