A BFH, the motion of the ocean, friends at sea, mollymawks, the Numbers
23 June 2018 | On passage from NZ to Fiji
Hello! Yesterday, after spending a month in Marsden Cove Marina, waiting for THE weather window, it appears that our day has come. SCOOTS left her slip, bound for the tropics, at 10:45 am local time on 23 June (your 22 June, Happy Birthday Nick!), intending to intercept a Big Fat High (BFH) that's currently moving east across the Tasman as we speak.
For the first part of the trip, Y the M is providing assistance to our sails, to get us north as quickly as possible through some light winds. Those light winds are keeping the seas relatively smooth, conditions beneficial to easing our digestion and inner ears back into the motion of the ocean after months of being stationary. So far so good. Two days ago, the swells here were 5 meters high...timing is important.
We cleared out of Customs with some of our friends: the crews of Irie II, Silhouette, Pogeyan, and Code Blue. It's always nice to know that you'll be traveling with friends, even though they're usually too far away to see. Some of them are going to Fiji like we are, but others are headed for Tonga or Vanuatu. Phil from Silhouette has set up a HF radio net each morning and evening, that we all tune into, to share details of our speed, course, wind direction and position and the weather around us, and just to say hello and see how everyone is doing. The HF radio provides a very welcome community among yachties at sea.
We've done our first set of night watches, so we're into our second day, which means we're a bit groggy. I've had my nap, and Eric is currently face-down on the bed enjoying his. We'll get adjusted; the first two days on passage are always the hardest. Y the M is purring along, and the sails are doing what they can with what they're given, so we're making pretty good tracks toward our goal. We're heading a little bit west of north, to end up on the west side of some cloudy weather that's predicted to develop to the north of us and then drift east; once we're convinced that it's moved far enough east to give us no trouble, we'll head more to the north. We're expecting much stronger winds to fill in when the BFH arrives. More on that when it arrives.
The Numbers at 24 hours: Position: 33 degrees 22.55' S, 174 degrees 00.28' E Course: NNW (348 degrees True) Speed: 7.2 knots motorsailing Wind: 8 knots from the W Seas: 1m from the E, 6 secs or longer Weather: sunny with 20% cloud cover
Critters: None on the deck, but I saw some blue penguins (!!!!!) in the water yesterday, and also some mollymawks. I'll leave it as an exercise to you to look that one up.