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LONG WHITE CLOUD
Paula and Stephen Pepperell sail the world on their 45' Herreshoff mobjack Ketch 'LONG WHITE CLOUD'. Over the past six years. Long White Cloud has proven to be a fast yet comfortable cruising yacht and is custom built of New Zealand Kauri.
Heading west
Stephen
10/11/09, South Pacific Ocean

We're still pushing west. Later today we will tack over and begin the run south. The boats--and there are lots of them out here--that tacked early are finding they can't lay the Bay of Islands and will have to tack west again. In the past 24 hours we have sailed about 140 miles but are only about 15 miles closer to New Zealand!! Last night we passed two other yachts. They appeared on the horizon ahead of us at about 1.00 am before slipping below the horizon behind us just before sunrise. Some boats are taking a lot longer to complete this passage than we are..little comfort in that though. The wind continues to be up and down so we are kept busy shortening sails and then resetting them again in the lighter patches. Yesterday we sighted our first wandering albatross since leaving New Zealand 8 years ago, and this morning the sun is shining, promising another beautiful day.

Pacific
Sailing well ...
Paula
09/11/09, South Pacific Ocean

This morning we are 350 miles from the BOI's and we can feel that southerly bite in the air. The warm clothes are coming out of seldom used lockers now. The sea temperature is dropping too so no more bare feet below deck either as the cabin floor tends to mirror sea temp. Yesterday was a bouncy one with wind up around the 30 knot mark and large breaking seas. Rather uncomfortable, but it has since eased and is now quite pleasant again. The wind is coming right from where we want to go now, so the next few days are going to be a slow hard slog which will probably delay our arrival in Opua by a day or two. You will see from the map that we are traveling basically across the top of New Zealand to get in westerly miles before the forecast south westerlies winds arrive so that will put us on a better angle to travel south into the Bay of Islands. We have plenty of fuel, food and time, so no problems with that. We'll try to keep updating our blog but are having more trouble connecting to sailmail now that we are moving further south.

Smooth seas today
Stephen
08/11/09, South Pacific Ocean

Passed under heavy cloud cover with light drizzle during the night but have clearing sky's this morning. Yesterday was a stunner! Clear and warm with a light SE breeze on the beam and a flat sea. We were able to maintain nearly 7 knots in 8 knots of breeze. Last night the breeze dropped out and we have been motoring all night with little sign of more wind yet. We are expecting a front to pass through sometime today and then a switch to SW winds in a day or two. In the mean time we are trying to work west to about 173 E so as to take advantage of the sou'wester when it arrives. ETA in Opua is still looking like Wednesday night, but a bit early to predict accurately. 480 miles to Opua at 8.00am Sunday (as the crow fly's - not many of those out here), we will sail further though with our planned westing.

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...it's been an amazing seven years!