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SHTP Day 3

There's a big 'hole' in the wind at present, close offshore all the way down from SF to Pt Conception, expected to last for 2-3 days more. High is right up near Vancouver & expected to be replaced by Low there with new High forming right on my rhumbline course from San Francisco to Kauai, Hawaii (where it should have been now!)
Seems to me I'm trapped in light airs for some time - can't move west fast enough to get to the good wind west of 127W now, and will then get caught out by being near centre of new High pressure because I won't be able to move S fast enough in 2-3 days time to avoid that.... And all because I was trapped in light airs inshore from day 1 of race.. Talk about frustrating...!! Anyone who went directly S has had an even worse time than my back half of the fleet have had, if that's possible! The one guy who did that has abandoned the race & returned to SF. Don Anderson ('Summer Passage', N6HG) spoke to the fleet tonight on SSB with update on wx info & consequent routeing - although what he said was pretty well what I had already deduced from my Winlink weatherfaxes.
I actually put up the spinnaker this morning (the sailmaker had had it out for measuring for my race rating & put it back slightly twisted) - but by the time I'd got all the lines lead correctly the wind had died away completely so it just flapped about - predictable!! The good thought of the day is that at least it's ready for next time. And it actually got a bit warmer for a good hour or so, although the sun never really got through the grey overcast - took off shoes & socks and fleece jackets (plural!) & sweatshirt (it's been cold & damp!!) and had a cold beer in hopeful expectation of some good sailing in warm weather...
I'm sitting here with a nice mug of hot soup in my hands... can't wait to get to the warmth of Hawaii. Glad I stocked up with Cup-a-Soups in London in January (although that was with Alaska in mind).
I'm getting sleep in fits and starts, over the day as well - trouble is that each time I get back up on deck, conditions have changed and heading/sails need adjusting - so inclination is to try to keep sails trimmed properly (trying to get out of this 'no-wind' zone) rather than get enough sleep! When conditions are more constant, sleep is easier to get. I'm hoping for NW winds very soon - wind has gone round to the north tonight and things look more hopeful. I'm presently making just 2.2 knots.
I talk often on the VHF to the others but saw no other boats or ships at all today. Just the sea - the NW swell seems to have increased but still only 4-5 ft (1.5m).

Written by : Mike

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