Thursday 17th October 2013
Sky cleared overnight - nice clear blue sky now but air still feels cold.
Winds eased this morning - around 15kt so pleasant conditions and making good speed under full mains'l - with genoa having ripped in half, have staysail in use.
Shackle holding line tensioning the gas-filled rod kicker broke overnight - heard a loud bang and wondered what it was! Couldn't see much in darkness although initially all looked OK from cockpit (mast, boom etc OK!!!) Found a replacement shackle - old one was impressively broken! Not too much of a problem - have topping lift I could use to support boom, if needed.
2pm Getting closer inshore now: 55ml SW of Point Arena, 80ml W of Bodega Hbr, 87 ml WNW of Point Reyes.... 110 ml WNW of entrance channel to Golden Gate and SF Hbr.
Had a big lunch of ham, eggs, onions and mushrooms with cherry tomatoes - nice!
Lots of shipping around - already had to get on VHF to make sure "MOL Efficiency" didn't get too close as they headed out from SF Bay & shortly afterwards there was another - not usually a problem once we've made contact. Most ships stay well away -good to be transmitting in this situation!
10pm Well, so much for expecting light wind -it's been up to 25kt at times for last few hours & we've been making 7-8 kt regularly. Means we might have made the Golden Gate too soon, before the strong ebb has died away so I've just tied in two reefs to try to slow us down. Also had to change course slightly to avoid a big yellow buoy I suddely realised was right on our path! Making sure we stay well clear of both the Cordell Bank and the Farallon Islands as we get closer in.
Sleep will be in snatches tonight with so much shipping and obstacles to look out for - present ETA at Golden Gate is around 7-8am (LW slack), although if wind does die down, we could arrive later. Max flood is around 10:30am, so that would work fine... From the Golden Gate, it's not far to the San Francisco Y.C. in Tiburon, where I'm expected.
11pm Wind down to 20kt and our speed down as well - SOG ~6kt. Looking good for catching flood through GG.
24hr distance run at 8:20pm was 145 n.ml.