Motor sailing to Newport, OR
22 May 2010
We have exited the Strait of Juan de Fuca and "turned left". We celebrated turning the corner with some champagne my friend Amy gave us to wish us well. While delicious, we sipped sparingly anticipating our night watches, and poured some for Neptune for good luck. We are not quite on our way to Hilo: our weather router has informed us that another bad system is coming in Monday evening, and has advised us to hole up along the Oregon Coast. We are targeting Newport, and expect to arrive tomorrow afternoon. There is a decent amount of wind but we have been mostly motor sailing, as the swell is inconsistent, and it is hard to sail the coarse we need without bouncing people around in the cabin. Freya has mild motion sickness, but everyone else is doing fairly well, but tired. It is going to take us some time to really adjust to the motion of the boat.
A stop in Newport will give us a chance to make some adjustments and fine tune/fix things - my inverter has stopped working, so we only have DC gear. This is not critical as our import gear is all 12 volt, but it would be nice to recharge the cameras. We are also getting a good sense of what is going to come loose in big swells - we have had eight feet or so most of the day. Not too bad, but the direction isn't that consistent, likely because we are only 15-20 miles out. We would have steadier seas and better currents farther out, but the weather would be worse and will deteriorate Monday.
The AIS system is great, allowing us to get data on ships near us, generally 15 - 20 miles away. We have not seen a lot of traffic, but a few fishing boats have not shown up on radar or AIS, a little concerning. We are keeping vigilant watches.