Friday, 13 May 2016

Into the Trade Winds

Typically, the strong northerly winds off the US west coast in summertime curve without pause around the Pacific High and segue into the Northeast Trade Winds. Mary Anne's last posting described the lack of wind along our route resulting from the Pacific High having moved south and east to lie across our path. We had already modified our course to try to stay in the winds east of the high and were reluctant to head even further towards the east.

In the end, we motored for forty eight hours or so to maintain some progress through the lightly rippled swell in the middle of the high. Our 700 liter fuel tank gives us a powered range of about 1500 nautical miles; now we are down to 1200 miles.

The wind is back and gradually strengthening. Temperatures are gradually increasing as well with nighttime readings now in the twenties [C]. T-shirts, shorts and bare feet have arrived on the scene. The forecasts show that these winds will waft us gently to our targetted point near the equator almost directly south of Hawaii. We look forward to two weeks of gentle sailing before having to think about the best weather-routing onward from there.

If you are wondering what we do out here, as well as the sailing, cooking and one-at-a-time sleeping, there is the repair work as well. Most pleasure boats sail less miles in their lifetime than we do on one of these ocean crossings - of course things wear out.

So far this trip, there has been a loose door latch to reattach, an engine oil and filter change, a new o-ring to seal a small leak in a deck plate, grease on a squeaky steering wheel, and an instrument to replace with a spare because of failed lighting. The removed instrument with the failed light will be fixed later in port where there is less motion to interfere with detailed soldering under a magnifier.

At 5/13/2016 12:32 (utc) our position was 24°55.05'N 129°36.06'W

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