RTW Day 167 - Approaching Tasmania's SE Cape - into new time zone

Saturday 6th April 2013

Crossed longitude 42:30E - so now into zone GMT + 10hr ... Eastern Australia Standard Time & Tasmanian time (they put their clocks back from summertime tonight)

A lovely bright start to the day, wth lots of sun, despite plenty of light cloud. A big, heavy-looking Anartctic Skua circled around several times as I trimmed the sails for a close reach in the NE wind. But by afternoon, grey clouds had arrived with a Cold Front - we're just catching the very top of it - pity! Wind picked up and I saw 6 knots displayed - but not for long... back now to just over 4 kt.

Spent most of the morning studying paper charts, trying to decide on passage-making options for heading N through the Pacific to W of Hawaii. Not stopping anywhere gives more flexibility, although the SE and NE Trades must be kept in mind. If I can take a more direct route, it should be quicker, of course - but there are lots of tiny islands and atolls to avoid!!

Now the windsteering is back in action, I've no real need to stop in Tasmania, I've decided... The diesel onboard should be plenty for battery-charging, especially with solar power increasing as I head into sunnier climes, so there's no urgent need to try to resuscitate the wind generator - too much time and effort involved, with no guarantee of success at the end. I'm well behind on my expected timing to this point in my journey, so I'm looking to finish now in the shortest time possible...

The big decision now is which way to head from Tasmania ... NNE up the Tasman Sea or ESE towards New Zealand - the direct route is clearly to head N now. The Tasman Sea has a bad reputation for nasty weather, but then, equally, so has the S end of NZ .... win some, lose some...!! On balance, my inclination is to head up the Tasman Sea - a saving of well over 900ml.

D.M.G. over 24hr to 1100GMT: 48 n.ml. ; Cape Leeuwin : 1426 n.ml. (286T) ; Tasmania S.E.Cape : 150 n.ml. (089T) ;

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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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