Walkabout - Motoring through the doldrums with 2.4 knots of wind
Good morning on Day 1 of our passage to Hiva Oa - 0540 local time
Walkabout’s first night shift is almost over and so we begin life at sea once again only this time its a little longer than usual. Over 3000 nautical miles to a new destination and exploring.
The early morning shift of 0500-0800 is a busy one! At first light the fishing lines go out to catch the early morning fishies which is apparently one of the best times to fish, not so lucky for us so far though. We have two lines, one rod and the other a hand-line with a small piece of bungie acting as a tell-tale if we have anything on the line. Both have been deployed and so we wait to see what today brings.
No fish were caught last night so during our evening SSB radio call with the other boats we enjoyed spaghetti bolognese topped with a sprinkling of Parmesan cheese, yum!
Food planning and provisioning for such a passage has been pretty good and better than we thought. We are in such remote locations that the variety of food can be scared and expensive. The Galapagos was pretty good with fresh fruit and vegetable markets and butchers and a good few super or mini-markets as they are called.
We have fresh pineapples, watermelon and apples along with cabbage, carrots, potatoes and beans and more. A 3 week meal plan has been drawn up and so we can follow that or change it if we catch fish or fancy something that was planned for next week. The important thing is to manage the fruit and veg so we use it and not waste it, in this heat it spoils very quickly.
There is a food hanging net that is currently up in the saloon above one of our sea-berths, currently being occupied by Tom as we are running the engine and his room is both hot and noisy! We’ll have to see when he wakes if the netting needs to be moved. Neither the front or chest fridges are big enough to store it all especially when the chest fridge is half full of watermelon at the moment!
Just spotted a pod of dolphins off our port side swimming away from us about 30m away! Always such a treat to see and one you never tire of.
The sea is pan flat with a slight role making excellent spotting of wild life; flying fish who scatter in front of the boat, dolphins, whales, many sea birds and the occasional ARC Pacific boat who are within 5 or so miles of us.
We sailed for a good porting of yesterday afternoon and into the evening, stopping once or twice as the wind died then when it picked up we brought the G1 sail out again. It is currently furled away and awaiting a little more wind.
Our motoring speed varies with the tide and at the moment we are doing mid 6’s sometimes as much as 7 knots in just under 2000 revs. No rain or squalls overnight so the hatches have been open and the boat has a light breeze running through it as she moves through the water swaying from side to side ever so gently rocking us to sleep.
The aim is to conserve our fuel as this is a long passage and we don’t want to find ourselves floating around waiting for the wind over the coming days and weeks. The forecast is positive and has us sailing for the majority of our trip and we receive regular weather updates from the ARC plus we have a great friends Ade and Bev who offered to send us through a weather update on the alternate days so we can make and informed and group decision on how best to get to Hiva Oa.
A seal just popped its head above the water to check Walkabout out as we motor past! He or she is a long way from land right now!
The musical society has brought smiles all round as Andrew managed to get his old iPod up and running as we found we didn’t have much music downloaded and available for us to play. Tom has a good few playlists but over three weeks even those may become a little monotonous. We are not able to pick and choose what music is played from the iPod and so it began working its way through the the songs in alphabetical order only to discover in the ‘A’ shortly after ’The Ace of Spades’ was ‘Aces High’ by the RAF band. Andrew does love a brass band! ;))
A little later this morning The Ladies Fitness Club will begin its 3 week challenge. Deb from ‘Escapade' handed out a training sheet for anyone who fancied a fitness challenge while at sea. 12 exercises in total, we are to choose 6 each day, 6 days a week, mark up how many of each we have done plus take some before and after photos so see how we did. I’m definitely in and I know Tom already has his fitness regime each day on the bow so it looks like at least two of our crew will be exercising across the pacific. Lets see if we can get Andrew involved as well x
Well that’s my update for today, tomorrow morning you’ll be hearing from Andrew then Tom and we we rotate the blog writing round.
I hope you are all well and enjoying the updates. If you would like to know about anything in particular, then let us know.
Walkabout signing out
Love from T,A&T xxx