Smooth Sailing (touch wood)
06 July 2010
So far this has been a smooth passage. (Once we rounded the Big Island and got a little south.) We are moving along nicely at 130-140 nautical miles per day on calm seas. The kids adjusted to the motion again fairly well. They were a little tired and nauseated the first day but recovered quickly. Christine and I have fallen into our watch schedule of 3 on, 3 off and are managing to get enough sleep. The heat will take some getting used to. We are spending more of our watches below, popping up every 10 -12 minutes to scan the horizon.
So far winds are much steadier than on the leg to Hawaii, and we are making far fewer sail adjustments. That may change in a couple of days as we enter the Inter Tropical Convergence Zone (ITCZ or "itch") where the weather patterns of the hemispheres mingle, creating a band of unsettled weather encircling the earth. The ITCZ is supposedly relatively calm right now. We likely will experience lighter winds, with some risk of sudden, strong down drafts. Once we cross it our risk of tropical storms will be significantly reduced. We are a little later in the season than we expected, and the storm activity should be picking up in the next few weeks, making Christine nervous. For now, the weather forecasts are clear for several days, and we are less than a week away from the safer side where we will trade the Big Dipper for the Southern Cross.