Day 3: Saturday 16 May 2015
ETA: 21-22 May 2015
After motor sailing the previous night we were rewarded with a pleasant day’s sail, managing to stay close to the rhumb line close hauled with full sails. Winds fluctuated between 8-12knots and we averaged 5knots as usual. The forecast indicated stronger winds from the northeast and to indicate this wind change was a line squall approaching from that direction later in the afternoon. Winds peaked at 23knots; not much when running with it, but bashing into developing seas tends to rattle one’s bones. Deciding to save ourselves, and Blue Heeler, from the pounding, we altered course and reduced sails for a more comfortable ride. Although we headed 50degrees off our course, we plan to make up for this diversion by tacking with a northwesterly due in a couple of days.
For this voyage we are using SeaIQ as one of our navigational aids. Although we’ve had it for some time, we usually use iNavX as we are more comfortable with its simplicity. SeaIQ presents a lot of useful information and features such as the ability to easily add Google map images. One feature of SeaIQ is the ability to have a talking alarm. Wayne setup the alarm for AIS targets, boat speed and true wind speed. Before long a robotic female voice was announcing “True wind speed is 15.2knots” or “Boat speed is 7.0knots” and so on. My favourite is “New AIS target” which lets me know that a vessel is close by. Our newest crew member deserved a name so as her first announcement was advising us of a new AIS target I named her Ainslie.
A talking alarm is probably useful if for some reason you can’t see the digital displays or perhaps you’re just lonely and want to hear a friendly robotic voice. (Wayne likes ‘her’ because she doesn’t argue!). But Ainslie must be new to the job as unfortunately she doesn’t always get it right. On a number of occasions Ainslie’s data calculations were slightly off and we were surprised to hear that our “Boat speed is 5,328,822,419.3 knots”. I thought we’d picked up the pace, but really? I particularly liked the “point three” at the end!
Day 4: Sunday 17 May 2015
ETA: 22 May 2015
Veering off our original bearing of 355degrees resulted in a dismal 100nm towards our destination, Bermuda. Even though we’d actually sailed 130nm over the previous 24hours, most of it was wasted, sailing further west to avoid pounding waves over the bow and to ensure a decent night’s sleep. In the morning though we hardened up (the sails and figuratively speaking) and altered course to sail close hauled. Still quite rough our bearing is now 6degrees. Within a day or so though the wind is expected to shift westerly which will help us regain lost ground. La Luna are some 50nm behind us. Plenty of time to finish Hillary’s memoirs!