Monday 1st April 2013
Occasional heavy rain on & off over the day, in between some nice sunshine from between broken cloud.. White-headed petrel flew close by as I was gybing the mainsail around midday in backed WSW wind of about 20kt. Seas still well up at close on 5m and still tossing us around .. set to continue for another day it seems - longer than the strong wind, which is slowly dying as High gets closer and drops down on us.
Saw a pair of albatross - I've been on the lookout for theTasmanian Shy albatross, which breeds close to the S.E.Cape, but these looked, from their bright yelllow bill, to be Black-browed albatross.
In between weatherfax and email/grib downloads, had several good radio chat sessions. It's nice to have a regular daily 'sched' now with the familiar voices of Mary Kay of Smithtown Radio and Jeremy of Dover Radio, in Port Esperance - where I'm hoping to pick up a buoy after rounding the South East Cape of Tasmania. I'd listened in on the Comedy Net on 7087 and then on Tony's Net, on 14315, early this morning (both are Aus/NZ local nets) - but the weekend's CQ Contest was still going on so, although I heard a couple of familiar voices & callsigns, it was impossible to make a decent contact - tomorrow should be better. Certainly tonight, during the usual W coast US/Aus chat session, it was really quiet - I reckon everyone busy over the weekend had collapsed with exhaustion! Had a couple of other good chat sessions over the day with quite a few Aus and E.coast US. stations. Having to keep a good eye on my battery state and fuel usage and run the genset quite often to top up.
Dug out my small camping stove so I was able to boil some water for drinks and to add to dehydrated meals - had a couple of those over today - they make a good emergency back up.. Hoping seas will be less tomorrow, so I can change over galley supply pipe to a fresh tank so I can cook normally.
Wind has stayed around 15-20kt over the day so we've made good progress - as we need to in view of light winds forecast to arrive soon. As it was, I unfurled quite a lot of genoa this evening, as the wind eased.
Beautful clear starry night after today's rain - Southern Cross high above, in the Milky Way which was strewn across the sky - and Orion doing his usual headstand...
Bad news of today was finally finishing the last but one of the Aubrey/Maturin series of novels - one more to go and I'm out of them - will need to read the last two when I get back onshore...
I'm still waiting to hear if anyone knows what the fish was, whose photo was posted the other day!!
DMG at 1100 GMT: 146 n.ml. - not bad! C. Leeuwin: 1029 n.ml. (294T); King Island (entrance to Bass Strait): 469 n.ml. ; SE Cape of Tasmania: 554 n.ml.
For my positions, see:
www.svnereida.com - 'Travels' - "Where is 'Nereida'?"