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Saturday, 26 April 2014

Cape Mendocino

Cape Mendocino, 100 nautical miles behind us, is situated on the northern California coast near 40 degrees of latitude.

Apart from the very seasonal phenomenon of tropical storms, that part of the world's oceans between the latitudes of forty north and forty south is blessed with gentler seas and calmer winds than the regions to the north and south of it. On the California coast, the land trends south-eastward south of Mendocino as well. This gives the southbound sailor more sea-room and removes any threat of being trapped against the coast by an onshore storm. I've made six southbound and three northbound open-ocean voyages crossing the fortieth parallel towards the tropics - always accompanied by a sense of relief.

It is true that the equator-bound winds can reach considerable strength near the coasts at this latitude but here, far out to sea, this trip is unfolding as I remember. The sun has come out, the seas and winds are gentler and the forecasts no longer show any threat. An upward gaze at night is greeted with stars dancing about rather than with mists swirling around the masthead running light. And while not driving us along at great speed, the winds which, a few days ago impeded us, Have now changed to be in our favor.

Two more days should see us into Monterey, California where we will rest and sightsee a few days before proceeding onward toward Ensenada, Mexico.

It is my turn to cook today: Salad is for lunch and filet of beef, broccoli and yam fries for dinner with a dessert of mandarin and blueberry.

There's even a bit of warmth [or perhaps just less chill] in the air!

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At 26/04/2014 18:33 (utc) our position was 39°02.85'N 125°22.36'W

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