Maunie of Ardwall - Maunie's about to cross the finishing line - under sail!
Good morning all We’re currently 2 miles from the finish line, looking at the beautiful andvery lumpy profile of Saint Lucia as the sun rises. We were delighted when thewind finally crept in at about 1.00 am boat time, not much but enough to give us3-4 knots of boat speed and, what relief, to stop the engine. We’ve made our first VHF calls to the ARC Finish Line boat and are nowghosting towards the line (in the wind shadow of Pigeon Island). Another ARCyacht, Galetea, is about half a mile ahead of us and another, Finnrose,finished about an hour ago. We are determined to finish under sail even thoughwe’re only doing 2 knots at the moment; it gives us time to drink in theview. It’s just amazing to see land for the first time in 3 weeks. Last night wecould see the. read more...
Maunie of Ardwall - Maunie's last 24 hours at sea?
It’s slightly tempting fate to predict an exact arrival time but we nowhave less than 100 miles to go so an arrival at dawn looks likely. Aboard the good ship Maunie, it’s brilliantly sunny, very hot and there isSTILL NO WIND! Unbelievable that we’ve had so little breeze for the past 3 days.Still, we are making the most of the conditions. The Maunie Mid-AtlanticSwimming Team were over the side this morning for a refreshing dip and we’vebeen hard at work since, cleaning and polishing the boat. We’ve been pretty goodat keeping on top of things every day but it’s been good to get her sparklingagain, ready for inspection in Rodney Bay. Di’s just preparing lunch and the engine power has allowed us to run thespare fridge as a freezer so the pasta & pesto will be accompanied. read more...
Maunie of Ardwall - A Motoring Maunie on Day 19
As predicted we’re now in motorboat mode. We had some gentle sailing for afew hours yesterday afternoon but the wind evaporated and we’ve been at slowengine speed ever since. Still the sea is calm so we aren’t lurching aboutuncomfortably and the stars were superbly bright last night (the moon is just atiny crescent, from the bottom, so looks like a Cheshire Cat grin). Rich cooked the last of our fresh steak last night in a delicious Italianbeef stew and we sat in the pilothouse watching War Horse on the laptop whilstConstance the electronic autopilot kept us pointing towards Saint Lucia. Today has dawned hot and sunny so we stopped the engine and the three chapsjumped over the side for a swim. Wow, really warm water! We were surprised tofind dozens of little rubbery Klingons. read more...
Maunie of Ardwall - Day 18 - a Perfect Day on Maunie, until the wind died
Hello from 14 degrees 52 N, 54 degrees 55 W, 350 miles from Saint Lucia. Bright blue sky, deep blue water, absolutely no wind so there’s a smooth sea with just a gentle rolling swell. Yesterday was pretty much a perfect sailing day for us – the Parasailor was drawing well – and Maunie was surging along as though she knew that she had to make the most of the wind whilst it lasted. To give you an idea of what it’s like running under a spinnaker, there’s a video we posted on YouTube a couple of years ago as we were sailing back from Ireland – search ‘Maunie of Ardwall and Perfect Day’ on YouTube to have a look. As the sun set we sat in the cockpit for supper, marvelling at the night sky. It was probably the best star scape we’ve had all trip, with no pesky rain clouds to spoil. read more...
Maunie of Ardwall - Day 17 aboard Maunie - this is more like it!
We seem, finally, to have found the weather promised in the brochure!Yesterday we sailed all day and night with goose-winged white sails,effortlessly making around 7 knots with Winnie firmly in control of thesteering; what’s more we had sunshine! The transformation of life on board wasdramatic – we were able to open hatches and get some fresh air through the boat(she’d become pretty damp below decks), finally dry our washing on deck andgenerally relax. Crew members spent the time in different ways: Fergus iswriting a novel, Rich caught up on lost sleep, Di reorganised things in thecabin and Graham took the forward sea toilet apart to replace a broken valve.Cruising is often described as boat maintenance in exotic places but he wassuccessful and we now have both heads operational again.. read more...