Hula Girl Update

26°N 149°W

Ralfie and I just came off watch from the best night of sailing we have experienced yet. The clouds have finally cleared and the stars couldn’t be brighter. With a blazing half moon all of our headlights have remained down below. The breeze has been very shifty which has kept us on our toes. I believe we gybed eight times in the last four hours. It’s now warm enough for us to sail in our board shorts and jackets, very comfortable conditions. Everyone is well rested and upbeat. Things couldn’t be better aboard the Hula Girl.

I must say for a boat well beyond its day, this thing flies! With such a long and narrow hull the boat likes to sail low and fast. At the moment we have 19 knots of wind and are surfing down waves at a comfortable 14.5 knots. It’s just incredible how responsive the boat is, especially as the breeze increases. Not bad for a boat that’s almost 10 years older than me.

This afternoon we were greeted by a few birds, our first sign of land. The breeze has been steadily increasing and shifting east, sure indications that we are quickly approaching Hawaii. This is very much a race, and we are pushing the boat hard to arrive at the finish as quickly as possible. But at the same time I am enjoying living in the moment and am not excited for it to end. I think often it’s so easy to be focused on the goal that we forget to take a deep breath and enjoy the journey itself. In what little time remains I know that we will all make the most of our time spent out here on the Pacific.

Mark Towill