The transit back - a longggg day...
01 May 2009 | West End Bahamas (N26*42.079 W78*59.484) to Fernandina Beach Florida (N30*38.277 W81*28.167)
Friday, May 1, 2009
As usual before any undertaking, I didn't sleep much and ended up getting up at 4:30 this morning. Footloose and another boat pulled out around 6am and we pulled in our mooring lines and left the harbor right before sunrise during twilight (close to 6:30am). We seemed to be running against the current for the longest time. Heading at 310* we were showing a ground speed of 3.8 knots while our speed through the water showed 5.1. The sun felt good and the seas were about 2 feet. A little more wind would have been nice but hey...motor sailing works. We put out our fishing line again and kept heading northward.
I probably forgot to mention that after going through all the belts and possible other hiding places we might store belts; we never did find one for our auto helm. We decided to MacGyver (spelling?) the broken one with strapping tape (not duct tape) running around the outer perimeter of the belt and hook it back up. So far, so good...
0900 - We had flying fish leaping and soaring out of our way but no fish were interested in our line with the pink hula skirt. Around 12:30 we gained a knot more in speed from 5.1 to 6.5 knots. The waves became more "swell" than wave and were pretty rhythmic. It was like the ocean was breathing in and out with little dancing ripples on the surface of the swells.
Around 2:30 the waves started growing back from 2-4 ft. Not much going on really - we haven't seen much boat activity out here - just endless horizon. The Cirrostratus clouds are becoming more status type further northwest. We saw a few freighters and passed them - interesting to think about what life is like aboard one of those behemoths.
Around 1800 as the sun got lower in the sky, I was hoping the auto helm belt would hold out through the night. This is when we really could use it - at night. I busted out the tuna/macaroni salad for dinner and turned on and fine-tuned the radar for our night sail. Wayne put a reef in the sail, just in case, with clouds on the horizon, the middle of the night is not the time to climb up top and try and put a reef in the main during bad weather.
It was a beautiful sunset tonight, the clouds turned cotton candy pink and looked like a wispy wedge coming down to meet the horizon in front of a blue sky. Pretty to gaze at... Blue sky, pink clouds, sunset, small waves on a flat sea...
We separated our watches into 2-4 hour shifts so we can catch some sleep (or try to).