April 11, 2011

Sail to the South Pacific-Day 2: Sea Legs

N17 54' W109 24' at noon today.

Haven't got 'em yet.
Sea legs that is. It's the term that means I could prance about the boat as if it were shore--not stumble, rather than step up the stairs, or hurl water at Maia, rather than hand it to her.
My seasickness does seem to be moderating--I can almost imagine doing more than stare fixedly out the window for miles on end. Almost. The seas are still rough though. And I have to say it's impossible for me to reread what I write so bear with me if this stops being clear. We have a 2m of confused swell and a dropping wind--which is almost the same as 2m of confused swell and a rising wind, just we're slower.

But despite the fact we are now only making steady 6-7's (we'll shake out some of the reefs when Ev is up...) We passed a boat early this am. The cool thing about having left with so many boats is we still have several around us--although we are all spreading out. But apparently we trailed Zephyr for hours early this am, then passed close-by at dawn. A detail Ev missed. Which is sort of amusing and sort of worrying considering the main part of watch keeping (aside from attending to all the various alarms that keep going off--more on this shortly)is to WATCH for other boats...

I saw Zephyr behind us though when I started my watch and chatted with him a bit then touched base with WGD and caught up with Blue Moon--we expect to lose the precious VHF connection in the next day or so though and be down to the daily SSB nets and email for communication.
About those alarms: We love our AIS. We have it set to warn us if a ship is going to pass within five miles (most sailboats don't have transponders so thus no warning alarm). It's gone off a few times--letting us know the course, speed and name of the vessel. Something that came in handy for WGD last night, when they had a freighter on radar (and right freaking beside them) but couldn't reach them on VHF. Ev looked up the freighter's name for Michael and Michael was able to call and get a response.

Our autopilot has also been beeping and complaining about conditions and we realize our new bilge alarm is set too deeply in the bilge--when we pitch and roll, the little bit of water in the bilge splashes it--making it go off. A detail Ev will remedy when it's calmer.

Day two's sun is just rising though-so there may be more to say later on (I'll add a position before we send and aim for giving 24 hour totals each day). Yesterday's 24 hr was about 155n.m and we're going to be a bit higher than that today.

Brad, if you're reading this we would appreciate weather advice when you can and have a fleet of 8 or so of us that will be sharing.

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