We stayed just in front of the strongest winds of the second depression, and squeezed up against the high. As that depression then slid Southeast, the wind relaxed. The group ahead were slowing, already within the high, and prevented by the Antarctic Exclusion Zone from finding better winds to the south.
So in the last 24 hours, we were very lucky to still have the wind, and have been able to gain many miles on the group, in essence bringing the wind to them. We won’t catch and pass anyone likely, although we are within about 20 miles of Alan, because they will get going as this wind that we bring gets to them.
Nonetheless, it is good to be closer. It is one of the aspects of sailing that sometimes one is the beneficiary, and sometimes one is the victim of such wind changes. And the three ahead have been victims of both our catching up, and Eric Bellion, who was just ahead of them as the high closed in, escaping on the tail of the previous depression.
We crossed the halfway point yesterday between New Zealand and Cape Horn, and so that is a good milestone, and another milestone is entering the time zone of California. That is a smaller milestone, but it makes me feel as if we are closer to home. Our ship’s clock now is set on that time zone.
And since my hometown of Boston is on essentially the same longitude as Cape Horn, we can gauge our progress by time zones there too, going as quickly and safely as we can to get to that time zone, that longitude, where we will round Cape Horn and head north.
53° 30’S x 135° 05’W