Shelena - Day 8 Final slog!
Ever since we caught our mahi-mahi yesterday just before sunset the wind has
picked up and is from the east. We have reached latitudes sufficiently far
south to meet the trade winds that blow pretty much from Africa in the east
across the Atlantic to the Caribbean. That is fine save that our destination
is on a bearing of about 160 degrees. Without getting technical the upshot
is that we are on a close haul. Opinions differ on whether this is good or
bad. For Petri and me that means yacht listing 15 plus degrees.
Exhilarating! To Helen; oh no, this is where the nightmare begins. It is
hard to stand or do anything. Like everything the angle of tilt can be
greater for tighter course into the wind and if there is plenty of sail out
tilt can be 30 degrees. Somewhere Helen confidently recalls that an
instructor was reported to say never have a list beyond 15 degrees since the
boat will move no faster. That may well be right. But that is no fun. So we
now go hard list when Helen has nothing more to do than sleep.
I forgot to mention that yesterday, in addition to fishing we were treated
to the spectacle of a pod of dolphins numbering about 15 swimming and diving
across our bow. That was nice. I digress again. Back to the close haul, we
have now been at a list for 30 hours so soon one leg will start to grow
longer and the other doubtless shrink in protest. No matter, with 36Nm to go
we will arrive at Tortola in the early hours of Sunday morning at about 0400
in the morning. Looking forward to our rum punch and to catching up with our
daughters in England for a catch up on their news.
Thanks to my crew Helen and Petri which has made the experience all
worthwhile. After resting up we have short sail; to St Lucia. Only 320-Nm!
Fair winds to all that continue their epic adventure.