Verbena - Day 16 - Land Oh!
At 8am we spotted St. Lucia through the distant cloud cover, what a sight! The night before, just as we were thinking about a pasta dinner, the line hits and it is Dorado for our last at sea supper. All are excited for arrival today and we wish our friends still at sea safe passage. — BillLandHo fish2. read more...
Verbena - Day 14 - Getting Close!
Oh we are close. Under 350 nm and currently heading straight at St. Lucia. Just had a meat and potatoes meal and we are all hoping for a fish tomorrow to round out our trip with a fresh tuna dinner. We are making way with a reefed main and poled out jib. The boat is moving well and simple to reduce or adjust sails as squalls come up. Squalls have been ever present the last few days, but today was a break. We could see some off to the sides, but non found their way to us, thankfully. — BillReneeKids - dec 8 Bill-dec8 Jeff - dec 8. read more...
Verbena - Day 12 - RIP Auto
We are reaching what feels like the home stretch, only 900 nm to go! We estimate we’ll be in around Tuesday. Winds from here forward seem consistent 15-20 kts from behind us, periodic squalls.Losing the autopilot was like losing a key crew member. Hand steering all day and all night on 2 hr shifts between the 4 adults wears you down. The kids have also been a big help as watch-partners. With the support of X-Yachts they are already looking at sending us a new autopilot drive motor. We’ve had some other setbacks. The water maker developed what I’m being told by Spectra (the manufacture) is ‘sticky pistons’. Seems easily fixable but a project. We have enough water so I’m not going to attempt a fix at sea, but we are now conserving… ie. read more...
Verbena - Day 8 - Chained to the Wheel
Since we turned west we’ve been in a good rhythm. Winds have been in the 8 to 15 range mainly from the east north east and slowly building. Yesterday was our best day posting over 200 nm. We had a Thanksgiving feast and caught our first fish; the perfect 6 person meal size dorado. Next up we are going tuna hunting.Last night, just as Renee is coming up for her (single person) watch with a symmetrical spinnaker up in the pitch darkness, the autopilot started complaining ‘no rudder response’ and giving up. The night was filled with hand steering, double person watches and troubleshooting. Twelve hour later the trouble has still not been shot. Only 1695 miles to go! Atlantic ThanksgivingGood morning doradoAuto troubleshootingDay 8 twilight at. read more...
Verbena - Day 5 - Turned the corner
Last night, before dinner, we jibed over to starboard and started our march west. And by march I really mean a large scale meander. Over the next few days, we’ll be banana curving our way towards our St. Lucia rhumb line; getting lifted as we go, then zig-zag our way to the finish. That’s the plan as of now.Seas have been smooth and winds have been light. Our Asym A3 has been our work-horse. The combo has made smooth easy conditions. We are making a Thanksgiving dinner today; one thing we we will be thankful for are relatively good offshore cooking conditions. — Bill. read more...