Thursday, 13 May 2010

Day 16, Monday, 3rd May, 2010. Galapagos to Marquesas

Too Much Luff

Breaking through the 500 miles to go mark yesterday was a big psychological boost. We’ve been keeping a fairly steady pace over the past four or five days and managing better than 150 miles a day.

Staying north as long as possible has been a good strategy for us. Thanks to the World ARC and friends on Crazy Horse for that tip. We’ve managed to take full advantage of the South Equatorial Current, the trade winds have been strong enough to make good speed and we’ve been holding close to the rhumbline that will take us direct to the Marquesas.

The days have been sunny, warm and full of blue sky and blue sea with cotton puff clouds here and there, very pretty. We even managed a closeup photo op, spinnaker flying, on the high seas with Inspiration Lady. It’s incredible that the two boats have stayed within sight of eachother for about 1500 miles. Last night put about 10 miles between us.

We had the latest GRIB files and were not looking forward to the forecast change in wind direction to east and northeast. That change yesterday and the decrease in wind velocity, under 10 knots, made last night a bit of a pain. Sailing wing on wing is not fun for us especially in light winds. We’re sticking to our rule of taking the spinnaker in at sunset. So the night was full of the sounds of sails objecting to being subjected to such indignity! Too much luffing going on for anyone to get a good sleep.

This morning with the spinnaker flying, the main at wing on wing, plus the missen staysail out in the bright light of day, it’s a vastly more comfortable ride. Life (and Bristol Rose) is good again.

With 16 days of sailing behind us, we definitely feel as if we’re on the homeward stretch. This evening it’s less than 400 miles to go and counting.

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