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Day 29 towards Cape Horn - cloud to the E, cloud to the S - doubt if we can avoi

Monday 19th November 2012

Now I know why the wind, puzzlingly, seemed to be coming from the SSE-SE overnight - it wasn't, except while the squall lasted, when the wind clearly was all over the place!!

I was looking up at the Windex early this morning, seeing it showing us to be clearly on a beam reach, while the wind display was showing us to be close-hauled... I noticed something moving about ... dangling from the mast top... Got out binoculars - still couldn't see clearly with the movement of the boat... Got the camera and took some close-up photos to look at on the computer in more detail... looks as though the wire loom at the mast top where it enters into the mast, for instruments and lights, has come adrift - looks as though possibly a cable tie holding the wires in place, has broken... There is NO wind display now - as I was nvestigating, I saw it had gone down completely. The transducer looks, from down here, to be fine - it's possibly a simple wiring problem - but up there, not so simple to fix!! Seems my trip up the mast, in calmer seas, is unavoidable...

Two small squid found on deck earlier - too small for calamari - pity! Flying fish are staying well away. For lunch, I had a VERY ripe brie - as yesterday, in fact. I've another waiting to be finished soon. I had it with the last few slices of a loaf of Dempster's Whole Grain bread that I've been enjoying - I'm amazed it's lasted this long out of a fridge! Tonight I had an onion omelette.

Seeing small groups of boobies fairly often over the day.

Pleasant on deck with the breeze and in the shade of the sails, but hot and sticky down below... Cabin 31C, sea 34.5C - getting close to blood temp(37C)!

Looking at latest satellite picture of clouds in the ITCZ, seems we're surrounded - they are everywhere except NW of us & we're in a clear area for the time being...! We clearly went through a mass of cloud when the wind piped up last night around midnight. Won't head S until I'm sure that's the best way to go...

Midnight- Well, we're heading S now! Waited to download the lates satpic, which showed an area of less activity just to S-ESE, with more cloud coming along from further E, soon after - so changed course and then unfurled a little more genoa to give us a touch more speed - just as it started to rain ... Not much, I thought - but, of course, it got heavy and the wind got up, its direction varying a lot... We were headed W on a beam reach for a short time - so clearly the wind was then from SE..

Shortly afer, the sky cleared a bit and things calmed down - we're now making due S at around 5kt - that's fine until daylight...... It'll take over a day to pass through the region of the ITCZ- presently, its axis is around 8N near here.

24hr DMG at 3pm: 107 n.ml. (after the squall at midnight last night, reduced sail a lot - just in case!);Golden Gate Bridge 1636n.ml & Strait of Juan de Fuca 2280n.ml away at 3pm & our position was then 820 n ml SW of Cabo San Lucas, Mexico. The Equator was 661ml due S.... and the Galapagos Islands, 1657 ml to the SE!

Written by : Mike

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