Khaleesi - Blog Day 23 - The Plight of the Night Watch
It is a funny thing, darkness.We have a policy on board Khaleesi that we hand steer most of the time, for two reasons: the first is the power required by the autohelm can be high especially if conditions are not good, and secondly we need to be practised in hand steering should anything go wrong with the autohelm.Steering during the day tends to be relatively easy, but a funny thing happens at night when the helm suddenly loses all visual references such as the sky or clouds or even the position of the bow relative to another boat.The only reference left is the compass in which you need to place all your trust, else you will be lost.The main culprit is the mind or the brain.Everyone has a built in compass but humans have lost the art of using it over the years.So at night, when the stars. read more...
Khaleesi - Blog Day 25 - A tale of two extremes
Well we made into Horta, but not before Neptune teased us again by veering the wind onto our bow, and by lowering the wind speed.We ended up motor sailing the final 100 miles although the wind changed about one hour out and we had a barnstorming sail into the channel between Pico and Faial.I had emailed the ARC team to ask if we could have a berth that gave easy access for our rudder repair, but this was not to be and we ended up three out on a raft against the harbour wall. We started work immediately clearing the lazerette locker, and I went to clear in with the marina authorities. It was all straight forward albeit a little bureaucratic and slow.nevertheless the staff were all very pleasant and I was soon walking up to the Mid Atlantic Yacht Services (MAYS) office to book us in for. read more...
Khaleesi - Log Day 13 - Neptune's little teaser!
Since the last blog, we had an intense but short squall pass over us at about 1700hrs on the 28th, and in its wake left no wind!Well only about 7 to 9 knots and from the West so it was directly behind us. I was determined to break the 200 nautical miles to go barrier, so we sailed at a saedate 3.5 knots until I had completed the SSB roll call, and we had our evening meal in relative peace and quiet.Over the next few hours we ran the engine up and motor sailed for an hour, turned off the engine and waited for an hour to see if the wind would "kick in".It never did of course. but then hortly before my watch at 2am on 29th, Graham called me up, as there was a squall coming towards us. Towering black clouds in an already dark sky were speeding towards us. We quickly reefed down and then the. read more...
Khaleesi - Log Day 13 - The Charge
The Atlantic can be an unforgiving force of nature at times, and at others it has a beauty that is difficult to surpass.Our fair winds and calm seas have continued as we ride a ridge of pressure between two systems, and with luck, it should carry us all the way to Horta.We are currently 254 nautical miles from the finish line outside Horta, and sailing at a consistent 7.5 knot speed.How good can it get!We have all enjoyed the sailing which has surpassed anything else we have experienced in terms of Khaleesi's responsiveness and the wind.Even the dolphins have joined in the early hours of this morning when we had a row of three on either side, almost as if they were waiting for bridles to be slipped over their heads, and for the command to be given to charge, like war horses pulling a. read more...
Khaleesi - Log Day 11 - At Last - Fair winds and calm seas
We seem to have hit a purple patch, temporary or otherwise, but we have fair winds of between 15 and 18 knots, and calm seas with lazy low lying swells. As a result we are munching up the miles at a good 7.2 to 7.7 knots per hour.With 450 nm to go we could see us arriving in Horta in 3 days, which would be outstanding. Yesterday we emptied the lazerette again to check on the rudder bearing, but were able to do so on the move, and this time the securing bolts could be tightened up with the rudder in a centralised position. They all needed to be tightened which Pete did once again by contorting himself into odd shapes and positions down in the lazerette risking life and limb on the bolts that protruded through from above from various deck fittings, and with the moving ridder stock he was. read more...