We started up again yesterday when the beginning of the depression had passed over us in its early development. I’m pretty sure we started up first of the group of 4, as it seemed that unless we got going, the depression might just run away to the east of us and we’d miss latching onto the western side and having it pull us past New Zealand.

So interestingly, we closed to within 30 miles of the trio, but then, when they got going, they were, yet again, just going a knot or so faster, and so have pulled away again. In the depression, at first we had the mainsail up with 3 reefs, plus staysail, but we were hitting very high speeds in a big sea, and it was scary. So we rolled up the staysail, and slowed down, and the trio pulled away.

But one must sail the way you think best, even if its not what the others are doing, or, even if it seems as though you are not ‘competing’. Because maybe being conservative will pay off, and ‘pushing’ will not pay off.

There are uncertainties here, as in other things, and one must just do the best one can.

Barograph during New Zealand Depression

So as the depression pulled away a little bit, the barometric pressure rose, as there was a high pressure system behind us. When the wind dropped to the low 20s, we hoisted the mainsail to the 2nd reef, and then rolled out the staysail, and then proceeded to set the fractional gennaker. This was a major undertaking, as the leftover sea, with 20-25 knots of wind sustaining it was completely chaotic. It took over an hour to get the sail set. I could not stand on the foredeck, I had to crawl everywhere, and clipped in all the time. The seas were still running at 12′-15′, sometimes 18′, cresting, going in various directions, the boat like a cork bouncing around, just scary/dangerous on the foredeck. Bull riders have it easy, they only have to stay on for 8 seconds! This took an hour.

It was the correct choice for sail. But now a curious thing has happened. We are going so fast that we are slowly overtaking the storm, as we see the barograph dropping by tenths of millibars. By the forecast, the storm should speed up soon and pull away. It can’t be soon enough for me.



50° 24’S x 154° 50’E
109° True
13.4 knots
14,763 nm
True Wind Speed
22 knots
True Wind Direction
Sails (click for sail diagrams)
Mainsail (2 reefs), Fractional Gennaker
Air temperature
57°F / 13.8°C
Sea temperature
54°F / 12.2°C

Winch Pedestal Revolutions (daily) Amp Hours: Alternator (total) Amp Hours: Solar (total) Amp Hours: Hydro (total) Amp Hours: Wind (total)
3607 670 12,491 1969