August 9, 2006

Good afternoon from VALIS, about 685 miles from San Francisco.
Our current position (Aug 9, 1:45 PM PDT) is latitude 39deg 59min N, longitude 136deg 54min W — notice that we have once again (and finally, we hope) gone south of 40deg latitude, and are on a good course for home. We are sailing at 6.5 knots on a course of 110deg true. Wind is about 14 knots, from the east.

We are still expecting the wind to start coming from the north in short order. Apparently the high pressure that we have been sailing up and over has pushed in below and ahead of us, which is giving us these west winds for now.
The wind shifted a bit more yesterday afternoon, to where we could make our course on more of a broad reach, instead of almost downwind as we had been doing). This let us drop the pole and put the genoa to port — keeping the main to port as well. We also set the staysail, which adds a little bit of push at this wind angle. This is a faster point of sail, so we were happy for the change. We have sailed all through the night and into the afternoon in this configuration, with the Monitor windvane doing the steering. We keep an eye on our course, waiting for the inevitable wind shift (which looks like it may be starting now).
Phil and John prepared a delicious tuna over rice for dinner, then after the sun set we watched the DVD “The Usual Suspects” in the cockpit, with the laptop sitting on the bridge-deck, above the companionway. The cockpit speakers were cranked way up and we had a true cinematic experience (almost).
Last night we shifted our watch schedules ahead by an hour. Instead of starting at 10:00PM, they now start at 9:00 to better match the changing times of sunset and sunrise as we continue to sail east. Paul had the 9:00 watch, Phil had midnight, Davey had 3:00AM, and John got 6:00.
Weather has been sunny, with some clouds. It is cooler, but still very comfortable. The swells are about 3 feet, and the sailing is comfortable.
Google Earth trackfile attached.


Responses are currently closed.