Report 9 on final leg of RTW - Nth to Juan de Fuca....Grey skies, light wind ...

Thursday 26th July 2012 (Day 14)

Not long after writing yesterday's report - fog came down and stayed for quite a time... not too surprising, in view of the far cooler sea temperatures seen lately... then suddenly, before sunset, it lifted, but grey cloud persisted, along with occasional light rain - continuing over today...

The wind, as expected, had veered into the WNW later yesterday, so the genoa pole had to be taken down and the mains'l gybed - took a time, as usual, and before going up to do all that, I'd donned foul weather gear, ready for the dripping wet foggy conditions on deck - first time foulies have been needed since sitting out helming in torrential rain overnight passing through the Southern Cooks, at 20.5S, nearly 8 weeks ago. (Fog wasn't too dense, in fact, although visibility was very restricted.)

Overnight, we kept on making good speed., as the wind slowly veered into NW, but by this morning, it had dropped, and continued slowly to drop more over the day, so we've been motor-sailing ..... presently, in 4-5 kts from well abaft the beam. With the good sailing overnight, and motor-sailing from later this morning to keep a better speed, DMG looks pretty reasonable, at 144 n.ml.

It's noticeably colder - I finally gave in and donned socks and warm fleece top! Sea temp has dropped further - now 15C.

Still spending a lot of time getting ready for 'boat projects' after landfall - lots to think about and organize from a distance by email, trying to prepare the boat for October.

Tonight I finished the last of the Tasmanian never-chilled, free-range eggs - the ones that have lasted best were small but very thick-shelled. Onion omelette with potato - and I added in some asparagus - decadent... but very nice!

These light winds are set to continue for several days, it seems - bad news for my hoped-for ETA of 1st August... It wouldn't make any difference were we further north, either. Don't have enough fuel to motor fast, only at low revs, hoping to motorsail gently in the increased apparent wind it causes - but not much help just now, with the wind looking as though it's starting to back - we'll have to gybe back onto starboard tack, that means... I'd hoped to avoid a final overnight of sailing up the Strait of Juan de Fuca, with the need for almost no sleep, being so close to shipping lanes and shore.... We'll see how the timing works out, this time next week!

Written by : Mike

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