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RTW Day 143 - Fog again, as we crawl E in light breeze

Wednesday 13th March 2013 - Into a new time-zone: GMT + 6hr

Up early, as is becoming the norm these days, to make radio contact with US W and E coasts ...and some in between plus one Canadian station... quite a few on frequency this morning (their Tuesday evening). I need to keep a regular eye on our course & sail trim anyway so being up is not a problem and getting radio contact for emailing is best at this time also - I try to deal with emailing in between the 0100GMT ham radio contacts and the 0330GMT check-in with the Pacific Seafarers' Net... If I'm very lucky, I can also get an hour's sleep then, if I need to.

Time zone change again, on passing the longitude 82:30E - so we're now an hour on from before. All very confusing for my body and mind - I'm just having breakfast, at 11am local time, but I still feel as if it's near to dawn because I'm looking at GMT which is 0500, even though I've been busy rinsing out the washing I started yesterday and have done some other small jobs!

Chilly air again, totally overcast sky, with sun trying to get through but not managing. Sea temp, 13.9C, is slightly up, & no fog around this morning. Wind very light - around 5 knots, maybe a touch more - so we're making around 3kt. It's a good thing that whatever current there is, it's heading the same way! Quite a long westerly swell of 2m or more and small windwaves on the sea surface.

Small flock of 10-20 lovely Antarctic prions swooping around - they move so fast all the time... and a Great albatross in the distance - distinctive white between wings but not near enough to see whether a Royal or Wandering..

1:30pm Making around 4kt - speed slightly up! Downloading current Wiluna (Aus) weatherfax. Even at highest frequency, only rather blurred chart received, but good enough to show a slight ridge of high pressure down to where we are and a small Cold Front approaching from WSW - will possibly pass just to S of us but it's certainly giving the present cloud layer. To the W, there's a second H which will give us another 'no-wind' session a few days after this one has gone away... I'm resigned to a very slow passage.... trying not to dwell on that, it's so frustrating...! 'Furious Forties'???? ... tell me! I always say I'd rather have a bit too much wind than too little - at least with some wind you can move, albeit well-reefed down in big seas, but nothing you can do in no wind....

Having cooked beans and split peas last night, it's made a lovely thick warming soup - just right for the present cold air.

Still thinking about those impellor bits ... got email last night... seems I might be able to access heat exchanger end fairly easily by removing end-cap via two securing bolts - just not sure about possible complication with the gasket involved, so waiting for advice on that before trying it. If it's as straightforward as it sounds, would be good to get in beside input hose to remove as many bits as possible - one reason for keeping old impellor handy, so I can check on number of missing flange bits retrieved!

5 pm Thick fog - can't see much more than a boat's length away! After some rinsing of yeserday's washed clothing, spent most of the afternoon de-rusting and generally oiling/easing tools that have become badly rusted and/orjammed - amazing how quickly they go, when at sea, despite all my TLC not so long ago! All started when went to replace very rusty bolt-croppers beside companionway steps, now that seawater pump access not needed any more. Continued when looked at bolts securing cap to heat exchanger, wanting to figure out how to undo them - that lead to discovery of jammed & rusted tools and bits - now all sorted, after lots of oil squirted everywhere and judicious use of mallet in one bad case....

10pm Spoke to US, Australia and S.Africa tonight - getting to be a habit! Still foggy and damp out.

DMG AT 1100GMT: 88 n.ml. - crawling in very little wind....! C.Agulhas: 2 n.ml.; C.Leeuwin WP: 1450 n.ml. Ile Kerguelen: 530 n.ml. (231T) Ile St Paul: 359 n.ml. (331T); Ile Amsterdam: 405 n.ml. (334T)
For my positions, see:
www.svnereida.com - 'Travels' - "Where is 'Nereida'?"

Written by : Mike

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