Report 4 on final leg of RTW - Nth to Juan de Fuca... Full canvas... lovely sail

Friday 20th July 2012 (Day 8)

What a lovely, relaxed day it's been, with relatively calm seas for a change!

A few clouds overnight and this morning gave wind gusts and lulls, so highly varying boat speeds (2.5-6.5kt!)... but most of today it's been sunny, with broken light cloud and good sailing.

Now (just after sunset, at 2020 LT), we're creaming along at 5.5-6 kt in 10 kt of E-ESE wind, with very little swell, making 020-040T - our course varying with wind direction, but it's good to be heading roughly NNE and excellent if we head NE! We just came under an extensive layer of low, grey cloud, so no star-gazing expected for the time being.

The centre of the High is just to our NE - not so far way - and expected to move off ENE to give SE winds tomorrow, veering to S soon after, .... so I'm hoping we can keep this heading, or better.

I decided to have a 'day off' emails today and relaxed with my book instead, in between sitting in the cockpit after sail trimming to 'enjoy the moment'. For lunch, I made some ham sandwiches using sliced bread bought in Tahiti - 'de longue duration'...!! Not the kind of bread I'd normally buy, being very soft, white bread - but it's made a welcome change and I was interested to try it. (I was interested to hear from the Czech single-hander Petr, on 'Singa', when we chatted on HF radio at the end of March near Tasmania, that he had provisioned with bread specially baked for him and then vacuum-packed in nitrogen, for his nonstop RTW attempt. That would certainly prevent mould growth!)

A few bits of small plastic debris have been spotted, including one blue rectangular bowl with plenty of growth on its edges - possibly, but not necessarily, from Japan, as a result of the tsunami. Unless I see Japanese writing on it, there's no way of telling! I'm hoping not to come into contact with any of the larger pieces of debris that are supposed to lie on my present path north - could be nasty.... A bit of a worry, to be honest!

At 1400LT - DMG: 121 n.ml. To Strait of Juan de Fuca entrance (N of Tatoosh Island): 1589 n.ml.

Written by : Mike

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