04 August 2021 | 17 32.383'S:149 34.232'W, Papeete Marina, Tahiti, French Polynesia
03 August 2021 | 16 35.765'S:148 31.906'W, At Sea, French Polynesia
02 August 2021 | 15 04.691'S:146 50.444'W, At Sea, French Polynesia
01 August 2021 | 13 26.365'S:145 00.927'W, At Sea, French Polynesia
31 July 2021 | 11 57.570'S:143 22.215'W, At Sea, French Polynesia
30 July 2021 | 10 20.271'S:141 36.000'W, At Sea, French Polynesia
25 July 2021 | 08 55.038'S:140 05.994'W, Nuku Hiva , Marquesas
17 July 2021 | 08 55.038'S:140 05.994'W, Nuku Hiva , Marquesas
11 July 2021 | 08 55.038'S:140 05.994'W, Nuku Hiva , Marquesas
10 July 2021 | 08 55.038'S:140 05.994'W, Nuku Hiva , Marquesas
08 July 2021 | 08 55.038'S:140 05.994'W, Nuku Hiva , Marquesas
06 July 2021 | 08 55.038'S:140 05.994'W, Nuku Hiva , Marquesas
02 July 2021 | 08 55.038'S:140 05.994'W, Nuku Hiva , Marquesas
01 July 2021 | 08 55.038'S:140 05.994'W, Nuku Hiva , Marquesas
30 June 2021 | 08 55.038'S:140 05.994'W, Nuku Hiva , Marquesas
27 June 2021 | 08 55.038'S:140 05.994'W, Nuku Hiva , Marquesas
26 June 2021 | 08 55.038'S:140 05.994'W, Nuku Hiva , Marquesas
25 June 2021 | 08 55.038'S:140 05.994'W, Nuku Hiva , Marquesas
24 June 2021 | 08 55.038'S:140 05.994'W, Nuku Hiva , Marquesas
23 June 2021 | 08 55.038'S:140 05.994'W, Nuku Hiva , Marquesas

Day 24, loaves and fish

15 June 2021 | 07 28.231'S:127 29.795'W, At sea to Nuku Hiva
15th June

07 28.231 S

127 29.795 W

Weather; cloudy, wind 5- 12 knots, waves 2 - 3 metres

I started yesterday's blog by saying that it was a slow day, could it possibly have gotten worse? Yes it certainly could and did! We continued to roll along doing about 5.5 knots during the morning and it got to the point where the boredom had me going below to make a loaf, so I mixed everything up and then put the dough in the cockpit in the warm sunny spot to proof, all good so far. I then suggested to Gerry that maybe we should put the fishing stick in the water as our speed was down to trolling speed and you never know your luck, so in it went and nothing was happening within the hour so we decided that we could have a shower and I needed to wash my hair. I went first and returned to the cockpit to dry my hair and watch the water rock us about, it was Gerry's turn to have a shower and I looked at the dough and thought as soon as he had finished in the shower I would knock it back, shape it and return it to the cockpit for its second proofing. I had just made myself comfo
rtable and Gerry had stripped off and had just finished washing out his swimmers when the inevitable happened, the fishing line zinged out. I started to laugh out loud as I reached the rod and began to apply the clutch, Gerry dragged on a pair of shorts and was soon out in the cockpit taking over the reeling in duties, so now we have to add Gerry going for a shower to the Gerry going for a sleep scenario of the fishing strikes!. The dough got ignored as I prepared to gaff the catch, as it got closer we could see that it was another Mahi Mahi and a reasonable size, not quite as big as our previously landed one but big enough for a few good fillets. The usual flurry of activity occurred as I tried to gaff the darned thing and eventually got it into the fish somehow and Gerry took the gaff from me and hauled the fish on deck whilst I grabbed hold of its tail and held on for grim death as it tried desperately to wriggle and thrash its way off the boat, we won and the fish was ou
rs for the filleting. At this point the wind had decided to play hide and seek with the boat, it was now coming from directly behind us and swinging wildly from 150 degrees port to 150 degrees starboard ( that's measured from the bow in case it wasn't making any sense to you) anyway this was untenable as far as sailing goes for us and we were lurching from side to side badly so Gerry called it time to Gybe. This was not a simple change sides and go again, first the jib had to be furled away followed by the main preventer being changed from the starboard side to the port side then the secondary preventer had to be moved from the midline of the boom to the other side of the boat and run through the various blocks and cleated off. Next it was back into the cockpit, carefully avoiding treading on the fish and the blood and mess, where the main traveller was shortened and then the main sheet was winched to force the boom across to the port side and then the traveller was let back
out. A quick dash to the bow to reattach the preventer followed by the secondary preventer and the boom was in position, time to deal with the jib. As I think I have told you when we are goose winging we have to pole out the jib to keep it from collapsing, well the pole was now on the wrong side of the boat so we needed to move it across to the starboard side to be able to fly the jib. This is decidedly a 2 person job with Gerry man-handling the pole out on deck and shouting instructions as to which lines, sheets, down hauls needed slackening off or winching in as he moved the pole from one side to the other. Finally we had the pole in position and could run the jib back out. Of course it wasn't quite right and needed the pole adjusting and a whole lot more tweaking before it was in the right position. I'd like to say that it solved the problem of us being thrown from side to side but I won't lie, it really didn't make the slightest bit of difference, even when we altered c
ourse to try and get the wind more to one side than the other astern of us. Gerry vanished to have his shower and I began cleaning up the mess that landing and killing the fish had caused. Once he was back out in the cockpit I thought I needed to salvage our bread so took the dough below, knocked it back, shaped it and then bought it back into the cockpit for the second proofing. Gerry meanwhile had thought he was going to fillet the fish, there was no way I would let him as he wastes a great deal of edible meat when he does the filleting, it was another job for me but not one I relished as filleting a fish on the deck when the boat is bouncing up and down and rolling badly from side to side isn't exactly the perfect place to be but someone has to do it. I managed to get the job done, only stabbed myself once with the knife, getting 8 decent sized portions from the fish plus a few bits for pie or bouillabaisse and released the skeleton remains to the deep. The blood and gut
s on the deck needed a few buckets of water to get rid of the evidence and then it was time to take the fillets below and tidy them up but at the same time I needed to put the bread in the oven as it was well risen and just needed to cook. Another half hour or so and I was done with the fish, had it bagged up and in the freezer. Meanwhile Gerry had been trying his hardest to find a sweet spot of wind direction to no avail, despite changing course the wind was still veering behind us and swinging wildly from side to side at a low speed, the swell was also now joining in the game and was hitting us beam on making us rock badly. The main was driving us to distraction as it banged, crashed, flapped, filled, backwinded and cracked as we crept along at 4 knots. Thinking that we might be better off without the jib that got furled away, huh who were we kidding, it made no difference whatsoever and so our afternoon morphed into night. We hoped that with the (apparent) sunset we might
get a wind shift as had happened most nights but no, this was determined to be the day from hell. I went to try and get some sleep whilst Gerry did the first watch ( that's watching the backs of his eyelids for any light leaks!) and by the time I came out to swap over he had decided that the wind was coming more often from the port side so we needed to gybe again, in the pitch black and going up and down like a lift with waves hitting us beam on, I was not happy. Gerry did the deck stuff as usual and I did the cockpit line handling but this time we didn't move the pole across Ð too hard in the dark, so now we would be running with just the main and hopefully managing to harness what little wind there was. So for the rest of the night we ran with just the main, the wind continued to veer from one side to the other at increasingly low speeds and the main continued to partially fill, backwind, flap and flop around causing the boom to bang and crash endlessly. Eventually eve
n Gerry had to admit that what we were doing wasn't working and took on board my suggestion that we try running with the engine for a while to see if we could get out of this wind pattern. On it went and we ran for the rest of the night with mechanical wind which helped a little with the banging but really didn't do much to get us out of the wind pattern. On a separate, but related thought, with the change of sides everything that we think is secure down below suddenly becomes flying missiles, noise producing, irritating, sleep denying aggravations. The interior of the boat looks like a bomb has exploded in it and that's after we have moved and secured the most annoying things!. Dawn was our next hope for a wind change, that would be no hope, this is worse than the wallowing in the doldrums! The engine has gone off and we are back to using just the main. There is about 7 -10 knots of wind and we are moving along at 3- 4 knots, most of it from side to side! The sky is covere
d by grey clouds and the swell is coming at us from what seems like every direction. We did a one hour time change at dusk last night so our 25 hour total was an abysmal 126 NM, of which 6 hours was engine assisted, still its 126 miles off of the total so we'll take it.
Vessel Name: Opal of Queensland
Vessel Make/Model: Tayana 52AC
Hailing Port: Bundaberg
Crew: Nicky, Gerry and Priss
About: Motley mostly, especially the cat
Opal of Queensland's Photos - Main
14 Photos
Created 17 July 2021
65 Photos
Created 11 July 2021
41 Photos
Created 10 July 2021
33 Photos
Created 13 May 2021
49 Photos
Created 3 May 2021
59 Photos
Created 9 April 2021
34 Photos
Created 5 April 2021
9 Photos
Created 5 April 2021
68 Photos
Created 4 April 2021
21 Photos
Created 12 March 2021
26 Photos
Created 27 February 2021
plenty of broken bits and things to fix in Colombia
44 Photos
Created 25 February 2021
25 Photos
Created 13 February 2021
27 Photos
Created 13 February 2021
29 Photos
Created 13 February 2021
36 Photos
Created 13 February 2021
20 Photos
Created 13 February 2021
13 Photos
Created 5 December 2020
Wind indicator replacement
12 Photos
Created 24 November 2020
15 Photos
Created 3 November 2020
leaving Port Louis marina, travelling to Spice Island Marine yard and hauling out to do the anti fouling
60 Photos
Created 3 November 2020
10 Photos
Created 29 July 2020
20 Photos | 2 Sub-Albums
Created 5 July 2020
28 Photos
Created 26 June 2020
62 Photos
Created 20 June 2020
10 Photos
Created 4 June 2020
155 Photos
Created 4 December 2019
104 Photos
Created 4 December 2019
55 Photos | 2 Sub-Albums
Created 1 November 2019
The life and antics of Miss Priss aboard Opal
27 Photos
Created 1 November 2019

Who: Nicky, Gerry and Priss
Port: Bundaberg