Days 18, 19 and 20 of Pacific Crossing
16 May 2012 | 04 17.492'N:128 56.770'W
Day 18: 104nms, Day 19: 97nms, Day 20: 84nms. Miles to go: 1039nms On Day 18, we found 1 more flying fish on the boat in the morning. Total flying fish count is at 9. We're still sailing with the Jib and Mizzen on a port tack heading SSW. Around 2:am, we entered a new time zone, GMT-9.
We experienced very light winds all day long on Day 19. We jibed over (changed directions) to a starboard tack in the afternoon to make "miles good". The winds picked up at night and brought along with it, some rain. We both had a night watch with rain, a first time for both of us. The 2 times it rained in the night, it was more like a strong sprinkle that only lasted 5-10 minutes.
Day 20 was the beginning of Neptune having fun with us. But before I tell you about that, we had contact with the outside world! We noticed a helicopter flying in a circle about 1 mile away from us. Then, he headed over to us, circled a few times, getting lower with each circle. They waved, we waved and we took a picture of them and they flew off to what we assume is their mother ship. Funny, there isn't land in any direction for over 1000 miles, and we see a helicopter. It was pretty cool. Ok, on to the Neptune fun. As the sun rose, so did the seas. Tom stayed at the helm for many hours, because of the 25-30foot swells, and just for some excitement, Neptune also decided to throw in some 40ft swells also! Mother Nature was also included because she gave us 30+knot winds too! With big swells, sometimes steep swells, wind waves, and lots of wind, we decided to pull the weather GRIB files and see what direction we could head to get out of this mess. Based on that information, we headed south to get to a little lighter winds. Sometime around noon, the seas and winds calmed a little, meaning, more like steep 20ft swells with the occasional 30ft, and 15 knot winds. About the 40 foot swells, it's just amazing to see these big walls of water coming at you and the big deep valley left behind, after the swell has gone under the boat. Of course, when things are the most exciting on the boat, that is when the camera never comes out. Sorry guys, no pictures or movies taken, until seas were down to 20-30 range.. The seas continued to lessen as the afternoon passed. As the evening came, it was time to get ready for the rain storms. Three pots of coffee made, a pasta salad, foulies beside us, and we are armed and ready to go. We were hit by 3 rains storms throughout the night, all about an hour apart. Tanga received her much needed boat wash. We both took our turns at the helm, and the other tried to get a catnap in the cockpit between the rain. Needless to say, neither of us slept that much. Oh, and we found 1 squid on boat. Squid count 1, flying fish count 9.
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