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Day 75 Sun-Mon 16-17 Dec 2018 True Southern Ocean weather - big seas & big winds - but good speed...

Sunday 6pm Finding the time of day thoroughly confusing - it feels quite early but it's well gone tea-time! Next time zone change is on passing 67.5W - just before reaching Cape Horn.

Sunset is late and sunrise is very early - nearly at midsummer here, so nights are short.

Wind keeps gusting up to mid-thirties - so boat speed is up around 6.5-7kt or more most of the time. Under a grey sky covered in rain clouds with frequent showers - none very heavy this afternoon..

Seas staying well up at 5m - quite rough - so continually being thrown around a lot and surfing frequently over 9kt - just saw 10.0kt and have seen 15kt very briefly.....

7:25pm Daylight beginning to fade. Seems this will probably continue for another day - until midnight Monday at least, before the wind eases on getting closer to the Cape. Being totally honest, I'm right on the edge of my 'comfort zone'!! I have to go up and watch the seas and how Nereida responds so as to convince myself that "Everything is gonna be all right!" Good song that and one I sing often when things get tough....! Definitely not a relaxing Sunday afternoon!

Instead of tea, tending to have a hot mug of CupaSoup - much appreciated in 8C/46F air/sea temperature - must go dig out some more packets and then have some food - something quick'n'easy tonight. Wind 30-37kt now.

Galley is in 'lockdown' mode in these rough conditions - sliding fridge top is bolted down and dry locker (full of tins of food) has its lifting lid well secured -= don't want tins flying around should we broach - lethal missiles! All pots and pans are put away.

Monday 6:45am Had several gusts to 40kt overnight but wind mainly eased a bit now - around 28kt.

Some big waves crashing onto us - a couple just came by - pretty violent - hope not many more like that - nearly broached in wave action.

10am Small group of prions swooping around - they fly so fast.. Sky quite bright, although usual total overcast. Seems a lot calmer now, with fewer of those big waves. Wind now mainly around 26kt. Boat speed less - only making 6kt or just under - varies a lot with waves picking us up and taking us forward with them - we're surfing often - so it's difficult to estimate actual boat speed. Plenty of rolling around still.

Keep thinking I should be letting out the third reef but then I look at the 27kt wind speed, a 30kt gust comes long and I decide to leave things a bit longer.

Seeing coast of Chile on AIS screen 70 miles off - not far. Uku is possibly 28 miles away but not showing on my AIS screen although I've been assured that he's now transmitting. Might not see his signal until we're a lot closer.

1pm Still getting occasional 30kt gust and being tossed around by fairly frequent big waves - nearing shallower water off land (Chile) can't be helping. Looking forward to the calmer seas forecast for when just off the Cape early on Wednesday and on towards Staten Island - which I'll be giving a good clearance, en route to E of the Falklands.

1900GMT (=1400LT) - end of Day 75. We made 147 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 75 (by daily DMGs): 7,629 n.ml.

Distance from Cape Horn LH (to ESE): 205 n.ml.

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

TIME: 2018/12/17 19:00GMT LATITUDE: 55-30.40S LONGITUDE: 073-20.54W COURSE: 102T SPEED: 5.6kt


BARO: 1002.1hPa TREND: 0 AIR_TEMP: 8.0C SEA_TEMP: 9.0C

COMMENT: Cape Horn 205ml away. Big seas still. Wind gusting to 30kt

Written by : Jeanne Socrates