Inside Play Day

6 Dec

December 2, 2018

Day 59

Noon Position: 51 57S  56 08W

Course(t)/Speed(kts): ENE+ 7+

Wind(t/tws): NWxW 20 – 25

Sea(t/ft): NW 5

Sky: Some cirrus; otherwise clear

10ths Cloud Cover: 2

Bar(mb): 1014, steady

Cabin Temp(f): 59

Water Temp(f): 43

Relative Humidity(%): 79

Sail: Working jib and main, three reefs each, close reach.

Noon-to-Noon Miles Made Good (nm): 179

Miles since departure: 7947

Avg. Miles/Day: 135

What mileage! Either I, in my sleep, have become a much better sailor, or we are riding a hefty NE current. I’m not pushing Mo nearly hard enough to warrant a straight 7.5 knots an hour for the last 24. But however it comes, I’ll take it.

We had a similar current passing Ilsa Estados just after the Horn and when departing the peninsula; there our speeds were up to 10 knots. A look at the chart shows that there and now, as we pass under the Falklands, we are riding the ridge that rises to the continental shelf. I wonder if this current is a function of upwelling. That might also explain the *still* green sea.

More signs of land. Yesterday towering thunderheads to the north that must have been above the Falklands. In the afternoon I heard a propellor plane but never found it in the sky. Last night when I came on deck, wind had gone north; I thought I could smell land. In this case a kind of punky, wet wool smell. Are sheep an item in the Falklands? And several times now the VHF radio has barked. I can’t make out any words, but there’s a vessel close.

Today wind has gone into the NW and hardened. Our speed remains a solid 7 and 8 knots, but we’re on the wind and the ride is wet and rough. So, this is an “inside play day,” though it is sunny. I got caught up on correspondence (what a strange thing for a solo sailor to say), napped a bit in the afternoon and then did my exercises.

I’m starting to do squats. One hundred now. More later. And stretches. Quite a workout on a bounding boat. Today’s gym was the navigation station.

Why? I’ve gotten leg cramps at night again. Only once so far, but this was a feature of the last voyage as well, and the cramps began at about this juncture–our entrance into the south.

The muscle that cramps is on the inside back of the thigh and runs the body’s entire length. It cramps in the thigh, making it impossible to stand up straight without severe pain. Standing straight is the only way to uncramp the muscle. A week ago when it happened, I thought I might pass out. Then, once gone…it’s gone.

Part of the issue is hydration. I don’t drink enough water when it’s cold. But certainly exercising the legs and stretching can only help.

Today’s bird, the Prion. A flock of 50 playing in Mo’s wake and in the draft of her sails.

This article was syndicated from The Figure 8 Voyage

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