We are pretty much becalmed, and have been for about 3 days. I see only 2 or 3 birds per day , and that only from a distance. 22 07.8s 99 34.6 w about 2000 miles to Mangareva lots of reading going on changed clocks back another hour that’s it for now
The wind has fallen very light, so we are moving very slowly. The wind is less than 5 knots and we are sailing at 2 knots, with jib poled out, and spinnaker to port. Fortunately , the longer the wind stays light the smoother become the seas and we roll less and the sails stay full. The windvane is still steering. We were visited by a good big turtle today. He spied us from a few swells away and paddled directly over to check us out. He was accompanied by a private school of fish. We sailed perhaps 74 miles in the last 24 hrs. Up to now we have been averaging 130 miles per day. But that was a dream, and couldn’t last. 21 50 s 97 46 w It’s a quiet life at the moment. Anico , 150 miles south of us is encountering some light headwinds from a minor low pressure system. I saw only a couple of Petrels in the distance today. For the first time I saw zero Storm Petrels. Two Tropicbirds at dawn. And so it goes.
What a day! The scene right now is this: full moon, 15 knot warm tradewind on the stern, the boat rolling along at 6 knts. Plenty of food and water. Doug will sleep for another hour or two before relieving me. Relieving me at the task of ETERNAL VIGILANCE. Today we saw a ship. Yes indeed , we first detected it on AIS , then with standing up on our pilothouse and using the binoculars, I could actually see the ship on the horizon. A near miss! Ha. It was a Peruvian longliner , 41 m long , out of Callao, a thousand miles out of Callao. A bit later we passed an orange float tethered to what we assumed was a longline. After we settled down from that event , we had a tasty split pea/garbanzo soup for lunch made in the pressure cooker , with onion , chili paste,bouillon paste, and garlic. Very nice. In mid afternoon we were visited by a Masked Booby. Sula dactylactra flew by , then landed on the water ahead of us to inspect us as we slid by. Pretty bird. A few storm petrels came by to drag a foot ( why do they do that? if it is for feeding how do they get the food from their foot to their mouth?) Over the day I saw perhaps 6 petrels off in the distance wheeling and gliding , but never close enough for identification. A Red tailed Tropicbird flew by at beer o’clock to have a look. We are 1200 miles from Juan Fernandez, 800 miles from Easter Island, and 2200 miles from Mangareva. Our position is 22 05 S , 95 18 W. When we pass Easter Island we should be about 240 miles north of it. Therefore we will cross our track of 2 years ago as we approached Easter Island from the Galapagos. That should be just south of the point where we passed over some water jugs to Emily on the boat “Bobbie”. That was at position 20 11s 106 35 w on March 25th 2011. I wonder where ‘Bobbie’ is now. I read a book by T Coraghessan Boyle entitled ‘When the Killing is Done’ which is a novel about habitat restoration and the life of ecologists and animal rights activists on California’s Channel Islands. There was a fairly detailed account of the fox project on San Miguel Island ( of which we have first hand experience). I learned about this book in a review in a journal called Marine Ornitholgy. Then I discovered that I happen to have the book in my ebook collection. The plot does sound a bit unlikely. What is weirder is sitting in the cockpit tonight as the boat slips along and the moon shines down, watching on my laptop ,first an episode of Wallander and then an episode of the BBC series on the Pacific (Blue Ocean). Very odd. Cabbage , orange , raisin and nut salad for dinner. And so it goes. Exhausting pace. Actually the pace is good , averaging over 130 miles per day so far. The engine sits undisturbed, as we enter the 10th day of this passage. Anybody we talk to on the radio (Regina on Anico at our radio sched in the evening , Wolfgang on the Patag Cruisers Net in the morning, Geoff on Curare in Ushuaia , and Peter in Berkeley) all want to know if we are fishing. We are not fishing. I am thinking about fishing sometimes. I don’t know if Doug is thinking about fishing. We are still at the thinking stage (pre contemplative), and perhaps we will move to the ‘action’ stage before we get to Mangareva, or perhaps not. In addition to all of the above today we also found the time and energy to cross the Tropic of Capricorn and enter the tropics. So we can now relax a bit about the risk of sleet and williwaws for a while. But of course squall lines are now starting to form in the afternoon as the ocean temperature rises. That’s it. no-footer ————————————————- Do not push the “reply” button to respond to this message if that includes the text of this original message in your response. Messages are sent over a very low-speed radio link. The most concise way to reply is to send a NEW message If you DO use your reply button, be sure to delete the original message text and these instructions from your reply. Replies should not contain attachments and should be less than 5 kBytes (2 text pages) in length. This email was delivered by an HF private coast station in the Maritime Mobile Radio Service, operated by the SailMail Association, a non-profit association of yacht owners. For more information on this service or on the SailMail Association, please see the web site at: http://www.sailmail.com