Day-Four: 24 hr. Run=119 NM.
Pos: Lat.02*02’S Long.87*02’W
Weather=Mostly overcast, temp=78*-81*, Wind= 7-12kts from the S,
Seas=2-5 feet from the S. Barometer = 1008 mb.
Day-5: 24 hr. Run=one hundred forty six NM.
Pos.= Lat. 03*37′ Long.=88*52’W.
Weather= Sunny all day. Temp.=78*-81*,Wind =10-17 kts.SSE,
Seas=5-8’SSE, barometer 1010 mb.
Day-6 Twenty -four hr. Run=166NM
Pos.= Lat.05*29S Long.=90*50’W.
seas=6-8ft.barometer=1008 mb. This day was mostly sunny and clear at night
Total miles sailed so far=808NM
Distance left to go to turning point for Cape Horn=2402 NM
Top speed so far=9.8kts.
The Rest of the Story.
This morning fired up Honda generator and let it charge for two hours, at a rate of 50-amps per hour, topping off my 8- golf cart batteries. I have just 26-gallons of gas for charging and get about four and a half hours of charge time out of 1-gallon of gas. I can also charge with main engine in neutral if need be and that gives me another 250-hrs. of charging at approximately 65-amps.
With the solar I have about four hundred and eighty watts I’m sure I can make it without the wind generator.
On a better note I heard back from Boe at Southwest Wind power and he believes that either the connections in the tower tube up on the mizzen mast are failing or the slip rings in the unit itself where the brushes make contact are dirty and a scotch pad could clean them and possibly get the wind generator back on line. When I find a somewhat flat spot out here on the seas, up the mast I will go.
Now we must discuss alcohol rationing for the duration of the voyage, as I had sponsors, Dan & Lorraine off the boat Zephyrus, they know I believe in drinking a beer a day and a guestamation makes that 180-beers, now herein lays the problem. That much beer would take up too much space and who knows how good beer is after about 3 months, also think of the weight. So I did what any good sailor would do, and augmented my supply with rum. How much rum is enough I asked myself, and ended up getting 24 750ml. bottles and 5-bottles of tequila 1,75ml. bottles. Fortunately for me my good friend John and Dee were down to see me off and John owns several restaurants and has a good sense for numbers. He told me I can have 3 drinks a day as long as I get back in 180-days, and cautioned me that 4-drinks “will not work”!! Since one or two is my limit at sea it sounds like I’m well healed in that department and that is without counting the 2 cases of beer.
I had to take evasive action during the night to avoid collision with a fishing boat. I tacked away to the starboard tack for about 5-minutes then resumed my course on a close reach on port tack [meaning wind just off the nose coming in over the left or port side bow].
The fishing boat was wood and not visible on radar nor was he transmitting an AIS signal, fortunate for me I seen his lights while having a look about on deck. I was extra cautious on this night because I had seen a wooden fishing boat earlier in the day and he had 3 small sailing craft in tow behind him like little ducks. These boats they use in their fishing efforts as they require no fuel. The crew of about 10 waved a hearty greeting as we passed each other within several hundred feet.
Today I have Booby Birds diving upon the fish that dart out from under Sailors Run’s Plunging bow as we are now within 150 miles of the Galapagos Islands. I feared for awhile that I might end up on the South shore of one of these Islands as the Humboldt current has been pushing me towards the North as I attempt to sail SW to the SE-Trade Winds that lay to the south of me.
Today the winds piped up to 15 kts. and I rolled the Genoa sail in a few turns on the furler,
It was then that I saw a tear in that sail. The tear was about 6″ long and I quickly rolled it on to the furler to avoid any further damage. The sail is but 5-years old and the tear came as a sickening feeling in my stomach, as I have so far yet to sail. Fortunately I can reach it from the bow pulpit and will make the repair on the fly once the seas and winds abate considerably.
At last I’m happy to report that the course is finally steerable. I should mention that since the Equator the Monitor wind vane has been doing all the steering, and since heading off shore from Ecuador we have been on the same Port Tack, with the exception of dodging the fishing boat during the night.
This morning when I went up on deck after a night where the heavens sparkled like a “Bowl of Diamonds”, I found 5 flying fish on deck and in the cockpit as well as 2 squid, and who knows how many were washed off during the night.
At last we have sailed into the SE-Trades and I have the pedal to the medal on the old Sailors Run and she is “Hauling Ass”.
Sailors Run my 40-ft.Baba Ketch loves reaches and it doesn’t matter if they are close reach.beam reach, or a broad reach. Now as for me the skipper give me “fast reaches”, “sunny beaches”, and “tight britches”. Well something like that; “Missing you Debbie”.
Out here you don’t have to worry about working out to stay in shape as you are doing dynamic tension exercise 24/7 and occasionally a yoga stretch that you might otherwise never had attempted.
I just eat 2 meals a day and that is somewhat like a circus juggling act just trying to get the makings into a pan on the stove. Yesterday, I had a bowl of cereal in my hands and needed to set it down, and the only flat safe place was secured on a burner on the gimbaled stove.
Such is the cruising life style! To my Amigos, El Jefe’