We Continue to March Along

Position: 42,56.9S , 38,23.49E

Speed: 18 knots, Course: 82 deg.

We continue to march along to the east is 18-20 knots of wind from 020. All is well onboard the Pearl although we did have a small electrical fire. Juggy and Jules sorted out. It was a “two alarmer”. That means it was only severe enough to get two people out of their bunks from their coveted sleep time. That is two out of four.

We have spent the past 24 hours in an ABN sandwich. We have ABN 1 to leeward and ahead and ABN 2 to windward and behind. Judging how these two did on leg one this is probably not a bad place to be. We are reaching with about 90 degree true wind angle and the beam of the two ABN boats is doing them good here. ABN 1 has made steady gains on us over the past 24 hours while we are just holding off ABN2. Movistar has made some gains hopeful from the fact that they are behind us and the front and stronger winds are hitting them first.

The wind has gone from 330 to 030 during the course of the day so We have gone from spinnaker in the morning to an A0 (reaching Code 0) to the blast reacher and finally to the J4 now. We always have the genoa staysail up under all those sails. So it has been a busy day with all the changes. Still we got some good maintenance done around the boat, calking some leaks, working on some navigational tools for Jules and I, and just generally getting things tidied up.

Yesterday we had two close encounters with whales. Both passed up one boat length off to our port side, both were heading west. We were just lucky not to hit them. We were traveling in excess of 20 knots at the time so I hate to think of what would have happened to each party if we had crashed.

Albatross are starting to come along and check us out. They are amazing birds, so efficient in shape, hardly flapping their wings and gliding for hours. We have seen some pretty big ones..10 foot wingspan.

The sea temp is down to 11 degrees so now that we are reaching at 90 true, which give us about 45 apparent wind angle, the spray is flying straight into our faces and it is cold. Time to add another layer under our Musto foulies. Almost time to break out some gloves. Also noticeable is that we are constantly hungry. We eat a meal and then 30 minutes later start rummaging around for snacks. Luckily we brought plenty of food.

The forecast for the next three days is north westerly winds about 20-25 knots with 30 some times. So it looks like will make good mileage for the next few days, not record breaking stuff but still close to 500 miles per day.

Time to get into the bunk.

Paul Cayard

Skipper of The Black Pearl