Day 10 to the Marquisas
17 June 2008 | South Pacific
After the most enjoyable 24 hours on the water, our 9th period turned in only 195 miles. I suppose the modest progress goes with the smooth sailing territory.
As the sailor's proverb goes, too much wind or not enough. Today we were in the latter category. Yesterday's mellow wind was followed by no wind. Today the wind turned east and light, making it impossible for us to sail the rhumb line to Fatu Hiva. Fatu Hiva bears 261 degrees true presently and the wind is coming just about due east. Sailing a deep broad reach (wind 135 degrees to port, traveler tight on the main and jib hooked to the rail with a 4 part purchase) we made 215 true. This not only ran us south of Fatu Hiva but the rest of French Polynesia as well. Pitcairn anyone? And not soon at 6-7 knots with 6 apparent.
We thought we had it in the bag. Two weeks under sail to the Marquesas. Two hundred mile days plus. All of that. At 13:00 local time we killed the dream and engaged the Auxiliary Apparent Wind Angle Improvement Device. We are now motor sailing dead down wind a bit high of the mark in hopes of sailing when the wind backs over the next day or so. Best guess is now 15 days at sea and arrival on the 23rd, six days from now. This will be our lowest mileage day yet. :-(
A few squalls in the area brought slight wind shifts and maybe 5 knots of additional breeze. We rode one lift for an hour and rinsed a little salt off of the decks. Nobu and I took noon sights. Longitude, good, latitude not so good. The sun was behind the clouds and we were riding a pretty sharp mixed SW/SE 3 meter swell, but hey if Shackelton's guy could get within a mile in a long boat during a gale in Antarctica, we can certainly do better.
Nobu says: "Randy is teaching me celestial navigation, I am confused"
Hideko says: "I wish we could have sailed the whole way"
1,020 nm to go...