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Walkabout - Cloudy days in the South Pacific

S 16:29.5 W 156:14.0

Its a cloudy morning out here in the South Pacific, the sun has come up but hasn’t been any kind of sunrise. We had a full moon overnight so it has been something dusk like for the night shifts. The wind is coming onto our port quarter so the big bands of rain off our starboard side shouldn’t be a worry, in theory!! We will wait and see if we have any rain over the next few hours but hopefully it will brighten up. We have had our ARC friends Zissou on AIS for the last 24 hours and now we have another friends boat called Tamlin on AIS around 10 miles in front. The AIS can be strange as often we can’t see anyone but then you will hear someone on the radio or they will suddenly pop up and they won’t be that far away. Yesterday we had no one on AIS but we could hear half of a conversation between more ARC boats Northstar and Escapade, we didn’t know where they were but must have been within 20 miles.

We have been flying just white sails so far on this leg due to the stronger winds, but during the day yesterday when doing a deck walk, Andrew discovered that the mast track for the spinnaker pole had partly pulled away from the mast. This meant that we had to bring the pole down and stop using it. The pole when used on the Genoa gives it a lot more stability and stops it flapping around so much when the boat rolls. Another job to do when in Niue or Tonga. We have sailed through on a port tack with Genoa and main on the same side. Two reefs in the main and none in the Genoa. The wind hasn’t played too many games last night and we are mainly on course for our waypoint 100 miles ahead.

The wind is due to die down a little over the coming days, this means we might be able to get the blue water runner out and have that flying. The boat feels so settled and stable when the BWR is up, the motion is so much more gentle as it pulls us downwind. This is unless it is overpowered and we start to surf down waves at 12 knots!

There hasn’t been any fishing since the Mahi we caught on the first day, but as there is space in the freezer it might be time get the rods in. Bron is adjusting to boat life, this consists of things not being where they were when you put them down, standing at 45 degrees to do the washing up and cooking and always holding on as you walk round to make sure you don’t end up on the other side of the boat.

Hope all is well back home,

Lots of love,

T, B, A, T

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