Thursday, Aug 21 – Day 15

It is now 4:00PM PDT, we have 215 miles to go, we are making good speed towards San Francisco, and we’re wearing sunglasses.
Last night we sailed under the twin headsails until about midnight, but the wind finally dropped to where we couldn’t stand the slatting of the limp sails in the swells. So, we dropped the whisker pole, dropped the extra genoa, furled the roller-furling genoa, and began motoring. At 7:00AM the wind had picked up from the north, so Paul C. killed the engine and unfurled the genoa and staysail to starboard. At 9:00AM we hoisted our repaired mainsail, and we have since been sailing with “all plain sail” directly towards San Francisco.
We have finally begun to see more ships. Last night one passed within four miles, and our AIS receiver detected two others that were too far to be seen. Right now we are tracking a ship that will pass us at a distance of 10 miles, possibly close enough to see.
For most of the day the skies were clear with occasional clouds, and the warm sun made for some very pleasant sailing. The swells are about 10 feet high, but they are very far apart so they don’t do much more than gently lift the boat. Since we are out of range of the Mahi-Mahi (we hope), Paul C. has dropped two hooks back into the sea in hope of catching a tuna. So far, no luck. For lunch today we had hot dogs with pork and beans. Nothing but the finest gourmet faire here on VALIS!
Our probable ETA would be early AM Saturday, but since we want to approach the Golden Gate Bridge in daylight we will probably slow down or heave-to Friday evening near the Farallon Islands, and will shoot for a Saturday mid-morning arrival in Sausalito. Tomorrow we will obviously have a better idea of our arrival time.
Current position: Latitude 38 deg 32 min N, Longitude 126 deg 54 min W. We are sailing on a course of 085 degrees magnetic, at a speed of 6.5 knots.

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