Wednesday 1st December 2010 Day 37
Last night's meal was fresh pork chop, fried onions, potatoes, sweetcorn ... & some plain, dark choc after... lovely! Had it straight after PacSeaNet rollcall and chat session(!) - then to bunk for early sleep!
Found two good-sized flying fish on deck this morning. I'm frequently seeing a solitary white-rumped storm petrel... but no other life seen for some time... I'm looking forward to seeing my first albatross S of the equator ..... But probably not for a time yet.
10:30am VERY difficult getting a Winlink radio connection to post 4am position report. Managed eventually, but only at 5.30am, after a long time trying... Sailmail was better, using Manihi station. Later, tried again - no joy, so tried Iridium connection - and that failed also, although looked OK initially - "no answer" it said.... So totally unsuccessful in attempts to send&receive emails later this morning. Theere's an enormous incoming email file - over 11kb - have tried to get it deleted. It's way too big to download over a poor connection. (Later: Winlink sysop Jerry, KL7EDK, deleted it for me - thanks!)
4.30pm Grey rainclouds, after lovely sunny morning ... showers nearby. Wind got up, so tied in 2nd reef ... boat speed better! Just finished re-wiring external speaker connection to VHF radio (I hope it's OK! Until a ship comes by, I've no way of testing it.) That done, I could then fix back in place my gimballed mug-holder at chart table - so useful for preventing disastrous spillages there!
Just about managed a check-in with the M.M.Net on 14300 kHz at 3.25pm - getting more difficult with distance now. Then had very few contacts on 14305 afterward - Bill, KI4MMZ kindly came over from 14300 to chat and act as a relay, if needed. Just managed to speak to 'Silas Crosby', 20 miles off making landfall in Cabo San Lucas, but wasn't able to be heard in Port Alberni, B.C., by Bill, VE7WSM, although I could hear him fairly well and there was another station in there but I couldn't copy them at all.
Seas are up - getting more bumpy - glad I finished that wiring job when I did! Just had to switch off the (unregulated) wind generator - putting in too many electrons to batteries!! Never thought I'd have that problem - but with solar power as well, it's charging too much...! Solar power is regulated, so always safe to leave that on.
Wed morning's 24hr DMG: 138 n.ml. - not bad! Sailing in more of a straight line now under wind steering, trying to head roughly S or just W of S - nice sailing in SE Trades with wind from mainly SE but varies from SSE-ESE - a bit 'boisterous at times!!