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Day 76 Mon-Tues 17-18 Dec 2018 Rough going again - wind display gives up the ghost.

Monday 5pm Wind is back up to 30kt - glad the third reef is still in place!
Finished chatting on radio and made a nice mug of hot soup - a big wave came along and half the soup went all over the stove top - so not only did I have half what I had looked forward to - but I then had the job of cleaning up the mess in these rough conditions... with galley sink seacock closed, of course, just to help matters along. Plastic kitchen bowl, emptied into head, and seawater (from dedicated pump) for rinsing the sponge used, to the rescue....
The fact that I'd been needing to clean the stove top anyway is neither here nor there... but at least that job got done at the same time - looks good again!
Bumstrap is an essential in the galley just now - difficult to do anything safely for any length of time without it.

While on the radio, I asked Jim, WB2REM, to place Nereida's position on Google Earth to see if we were on the continental shelf yet - seems we're not, but quite close - which would also partly explain the wave action - they pile up at the edge of the shelf as they head inshore so maybe that's adding to our swell. He said we're running parallel to the edge of it just now. Propagation today on 17m was excellent and several of us were able to have a decent conversation for quite a time - unlike some days.

It has been raining a lot today - grey overcast all day long... Why does the sky look miserable when it's rainy grey but the prions look so pretty in their grey and white plumage ?

Back to the galley - need to have some decent food tonight - last night's choice (a dehydrated meal) is definitely not to be repeated.

7.30pm Wind 30kt, gusting up to 35kt now

Tuesday 6am Presently, 115 miles from Cape Horn. It got very 'boisterous' at times overnight - I understand my tracker might be playing up after a particularly energetic 'wave event' - several have tossed us around vigorously.
Another victim was the wind transducer at the mast top. After wind from W at 30-35kt, gusting to 38kt around midnight, by 1am, I noticed the display was not behaving well and by 2am it had gone completely - a series of dashes on the wind display is all that there is to be seen now - damn!!!! It's very useful to see the wind angle to the boat when nearly dead downwind as we have been for the last few days and it's nice to know the wind speed and direction at a glance from down below.

I've been sent Uku's position ('One & All') at 0400Z and 0800Z today and see that he crossed ahead of us overnight - he's now to starboard of us, roughly ten miles to our S-SE.

Wind feels as though it has eased a bit. We've just crossed over onto the continental shelf where the depths rise up dramatically from thousands of metres to just hundreds.

7am Three Wandering albatross seen soaring gracefully and effortlessly, circling around Nereida under a grey sky. All-white underbody with black underwing tips, no 'splashes' of white on the dark wings but a white upper body in between, extending to just beyond the wing bases. A few prions busily swooping close to the sea and a white-chinned petrel also came gliding by. It's busy out here - breakfast time?

It hardly got dark last night - I've not seen the moon for a time so wonder if it's around full moon so it was lighting up the cloud layer from above? Otherwise, it's simply because we're well south and midsummer is only three days away down here.

Uku commented, during our radio chat yesterday evening, that he'd not seen the sun for several days to get a sight so he's running on dead reckoning. He knows our position and roughly where he is in relation to us which was maybe why he crossed over to get further offshore - there are a few islands ahead, inshore of our path to the Cape.

11:45am Seeing a small grey lump rising from the sea on the horizon off to port - Islas Ildefonso are 9-10 miles off - the reason Uku changed course overnight, no doubt. Wind must still be close to 30kt since we're still making 6kt SOG on a broad reach. One albatross is soaring nearby in the hazy sunlight - clouds are white, not grey, just now, and slightly broken.

2pm Spoke to Uku a short time ago - over VHF - 'One and All' is only 12 miles to our S - friends told him. No sign on my AIS display still.
I re-booted the wind display - readings came back - but total rubbish! No use at all.
Slowed a lot - need to trim sails ... and let out that hard-working third reef?!

1900GMT (=1400LT) - end of Day 76. We made 145 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 7,774 n.ml.

Distance from Cape Horn LH (to ESE): 62 n.ml.

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

TIME: 2018/12/18 19:00GMT LATITUDE: 55-58.34S LONGITUDE: 069-07.03W COURSE: 097T SPEED: 4.5kt
BARO: 996.4hPa TREND: -2 AIR_TEMP: 12.0C SEA_TEMP: 10.0C
COMMENT: Slowed down in less wind. Some sunshine and scattered cumulus. C.Horn 62ml

Written by : Jeanne Socrates