We’re about 900 miles east northeast of Buenos Aires, so we’re making slow progress north. We are trapped in a big depression, yet again. We keep finding the 35 knot, upwind parts of the South Atlantic. We bailed out last night into the center of it, just to get less wind, and try to make our way up the inside edge of it, a little bit. As the depression diminishes, we are hoping we don’t get overtaken by the very low wind in the center. We want to get to the 25 knot winds that we can use to get across and outside of this. It looks like this depression will dissipate in the next 24-36, maybe 48 hours.
It was a little dramatic last night, just to take evasive action. It was really because we were going upwind into seas and the boat was taking such a beating. We primarily wanted to protect the boat, which we did, and also, due to the violent motion of the boat, to not get hurt. If you miss a handhold, either in the cockpit or in the cabin then, with the motion, you could easily go flying headfirst across the cabin. So, that was the goal and we succeeded in that.
We have a few new noises that and I’ve learned to recognize. There’s a noise back in the lazarette, when the hydraulic ram for the autopilot starts to move a little bit on its pivot point, which needs to be snugged up with a wrench. Just a quarter turn on a little locking screw, and since I know what that sounds like, now, I can go back there and snug it up again. And the sound goes away.
We’re heading to the northeast, have about 10-12 knots of wind, and we’re making 10-11 knots, with one reef in the mainsail and the solent. We’ll get into some stronger winds, in maybe 8 or 10 hours, and maybe go back down a reef and maybe back to the staysail. We shall see. But, then, once we’re hopefully out of this, we will have a fairly long stretch before tacking to the north.
The boats up ahead are outside this system. It seemed as though they were headed over for it, to get a little more wind and then maybe realized what was in the middle of it, or what the sea state was, and bailed out.
There are a couple of boats behind us that are closing in, as well, Didac Costa and Romain Attanasio, just as Alex Thomson was able to take a lot of miles out of Armel Le Cleac’h along this coast. The coast is complicated and confusing and it has storms and it has light spots. Its just a long, long coast, from Cape Horn up to Recife, at the northeast corner of Brazil. So we’re about halfway up there now, and working on it.
31° 58’S x 40° 16’W
True Wind Speed
True Wind Direction
Sails (click for diagram)
Mainsail (1 reef), Solent
74°F / 23.3°C
75°F / 23.8°C
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