Thursday, June 2, 2011

Day 17- sleigh ride begins

Time: 1700 Zulu (noon PV time)
Position: 19-deg 09-min N 135-deg 47-min W
Wind: NE 19-knots Seas: NE 6-ft
Avg. Course: 271 T Avg. Speed: 5.6-knots
Rig: 80% jib
24-hr distance traveled: 135-nm
Distance to Hilo: 1,093-nm

Today we have both felt quite light and satisfied for, we realize, the first time of this journey. Maybe we've finally found our groove. Maybe we're getting better sleep (as the creaks, groans, and rolls are interwoven in our dreams). Maybe we see the light at the end of the tunnel. Maybe it's because we realize we have plenty of provisions, energy, and water. Maybe it was last night's New Moon. Maybe it's simply because we like the downhill portion. It feels like a crazy sleigh ride as Tao surfs down across the waves, exits off the back of the, and then surfs another over and over all day long toward our destination. Whatever the reason, now that we are feeling quite good, we must admit that we have each been battling anxiousness throughout the different sections of this voyage up to this point.

That said, no big challenges today like yesterday (we forgot to mention that we were visited by more pilot whales yesterday too- no aggression, they just flanked our boat as we both sat on the foredeck repairing our sail). It is amazing to us that we made our best mileage day ever with only the 80% jib and a couple hours of the triple-reefed main. It's because we're in consistent NEasterly winds of the high ranging from 18-25-knots all day long. Most of the day 5-6-ft seas from the NE have provided us with repeatedly good surfing, which surely helps our boat speeds as well. Although we likely could make more consistent speeds with the 100% alone, we want to take it easy on the rig and feel there is more single-handed versatility (no entire sail changes) working with the 80% and the main instead (sorry Jacob and your 18-day guesstimate).

An interesting side note: Although we have kept the same watch schedules, it is as if we are rotating because each day as we move west, the sun rises and sets later. By the time we reach Hawaii, we will have completely switched watches and each of us will have gotten to experience being on deck and sleeping at all times of day and night. Moni continues to steer like a champion and Grizzly continues to provide fluffy comfort. We will all continue to bask in the sun as it peeks through more each afternoon, hunker down for the squalls as they blow by, enjoy the stars that shine through and the phosphorescence in our wake and breaking waves, and welcome the waxing moon on our night watches over the coming days.


  1. Great thoughts. Hope all continues to be quiet and forward-moving. I think about your trek constantly. How is the moose dust supply for Grizzly holding up? Please keep up the smiling and laughter every day. Love you lots, Mum

  2. Rock on Sailors! Thinking of you guys!