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SHTP Day 20

Thursday 13th July

It's turned into a beautiful sunny afternoon after a night and morning of frequent heavy rain - and GOOD winds!!
Boatspeed up to now (6pm PDT) has been consistently up around 7.5kn, with similar, if not higher, SOG (helpful current for a change!). The swell is still big - up to 8-10 ft on occasion and presently every 7-8 secs. That causes problems with the mainsail when the wind veers into the east more, making our rhumbline course nearly dead downwind.

I finally managed to connect in to one of the two Hawaiian Winlink PMBOs for emails & my usual daily Position Report (posted on www.winlink.org every day I'm on passage) - they've been surprisingly unavailable for much of my crossing although, in theory, they should have given me good, speedy connections most of the time. As my distance from the mainland has increased, my choice of stations to connect into there has become more & more limited in number. Timing has also become very important, with evening & night best, morning to early afternoon normally impossible! Having Winlink for communicating with friends & family, as well as downloading vital weather info, has been very important for me for the last 3 yrs, whether on passage or in some remote anchorage - it has been a great standby.

Bill on 'Ergo' reported this afternoon that all was well, with his mast still standing - his macrame skills are increasing daily and he's even getting into colour coordinating! He's feeling pretty tired though because the wind shifts in squalls overnight meant he had to handsteer fairly often to take care of his rig - he's looking forward to finishing on Saturday!

My thoughts are constantly turning to my possible ETA at the finish line. Depending on my average speed from now, it looks like Saturday from 3am onward, most likely 5-6am (PDT) (that's 2-3am local time). I'm glad I got my depth meter working, ready for a night landfall. I've been checking over my fresh food - can't take fresh meat, eggs, fruit or veg into Hawaii, so I must either have eaten or cooked it all by Saturday - or have it confiscated!!

My jury-rigged wiring is dangling all over the place in the aft cabin, which is in chaos & will have to stay that way until I get to Hanalei Bay & acquire some cable to re-wire it properly. I'm rather disappointed that I've not had a response over the last two days to my various queries by email regarding my instrument problems - which are by no means resolved on a long term basis.

So... with no wiring to be usefully done today, it's been a fairly relaxing day (too windy for the spinnaker!) - think I'll go and read a book in the sunny cockpit for an hour or so, before cooking!

At 1845 PDT, 22 48N, 155 32W ; DTF: 223 n.ml. ; 24hr distance run (to 0845 today): 159 n.ml.

Written by : Mike

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