RTW Day 165 - wind disappears after sunset and seas lie down

Thursday 4th April

Total overcast all day long - no sight of the sun here whereas Tasmania, 200 miles to the East and on the other side of the High centre, seems to have had sunshine all day. Some showers nearby and a hint of rain this afternoon

On checking on deck early this morning, found the genoa flapping - it had wrapped itself around the stay - the sheet had broken apart - couldn't see what it had chafed on - looked almost cut... Swell was down at around 1 m so not too much problem standing in bow to try to persuade the genoa to unwrap - not easy, but was finally straightened out and good sheet tensioned so a temporary second sheet could be attached. Found a good line in the forepeak long enough to replace both sheets with a cow hitch in the middle at the clew the old sheets are really looking worn, having had four years of good use.

Spent many hours struggling with the back up computer - it has been determinedly playing up, particularly the Airmail program I use for emails, gribs and downloading weatherfaxes - as though it has become corrupted. Several times was forced to re-boot the computer after it had hung up & even using Task Manager couldn't resolve the problem... Program is useable, but still giving problems.... and I'm still missing data and addresses which hadn't been saved recently from the other computer.

Went to make my 1100GMT log entry - noted speed, SOG, as being 0.1kt with course, COG, 100T. Later, looked up to find us heading N at 2 knots!! Rushed up on deck, thinking we could get sailing - surely there must be a little wind...? Started autopilot - kept us heading at 1kt on course to SE Cape of Tasmania for all of 10-15 minutes before wind died and we lost steerage...!! Silence .... no sound of wind in rigging... occasional quiet lap of water on hull... We're drifting SE at 1.2kt.... Have gybed the main several times - wind keeps changing...

Found a sociable local Aussie Net on 7093 at 2.30pm - clearly a daily 'get-together' event and they made me very welcome! Propagation today was good - spoke to several US stations later, with good clear signals - seems my signal was particularly clear tonight. Has been suggested that I try wireless and/or bluetooth connection between laptops to get at data/email addresses I need from old laptop - problem might be that old laptop won't have either switched on... I'll see tomorrow.

Hoping to be able to try to replace wind steering rudder tomorrow - maybe swell will be even less than now.. Need still water.

A few birds this afternoon - including the white-headed petrel and an albatross.

D.M.G. over 24hr to 1100GMT: 60 n.ml. ; Cape Leeuwin : 1317 n.ml. (286T) ; King Island (entrance to Bass Strait) : 252 n.ml. (034T) ; Tasmania S.E.Cape : 258 n.ml. (291T)

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For my positions and track, see:
www.svnereida.com - 'Travels' - "Where is 'Nereida'?"
and/or:
http://www.exactearth.com/media-centre/recent-ship-tracks/tracking-nereida/

Written by : Mike

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