September 19, 2019
Days at Sea: 288
Days Since Departure: 354
Noon Position: 57 24N 167 25W
Course(t)/Speed(kts): SxE 6
Wind(t/tws): ENE 5+
Sea(t/ft): E2, S4
Sky/10ths Cover: Drizzle, 10
Bar(mb): 1002+, steady
On-deck Temp(f): 57
Cabin Temp(f): 65
Water Temp(f): 50
Relative Humidity(%): 49
Magnetic Variation: 8.4
Sail: Working jib and main; what there is of wind is on the beam.
Noon-to-Noon Miles Made Good (nm): 143
Miles since departure: 36,637
Randall: Have you seen the weather forecast for the Gulf of Alaska, Monte? It’s looking pretty grim.
Monte: Senior, I do not consult your forecasts. A forecast it does one of two things. It makes you lazy, convincing you that you know something you do not, or it makes you afraid. To the inexperienced Jack, such as yourself, the usual effect of this latter phenomenon is that the ship it is reefed far too early, or maybe she does not leave port at all. No, Monte tells the weather by looking at the sky and feeling the wind on his face. That is enough for the true pilot.
Randall: Then I suppose you have a strategy for our coming passage home?
Monte: A strategy! Senior, do I look like that kind of man to you? I did not get these calluses by having a strategy! (Monte spits in disgust.) A boat it can only be steered from one wave to the next; it can only be sailed on the present wind. How can you plan for a storm three days hence when that storm may decide that instead of blowing it will spend the afternoon talking to the ladies by the fountain or maybe it will ride the horses up into the hills or maybe it will stay in its room with a bottle of madeira. Storms are that way, you know; what they will do cannot be known, and only a fool would have a strategy for what cannot be known.
Randall: Still, I wish I had a sense of how to slice the next two thousand miles after Dutch.
Monte: My friend, you do not ask the cook what is for dinner before he has done with the breakfast. If the crew does not falter and the gear does not fail, the boat she will go where she is meant to go and end up where she is meant to end up. What will happen cannot be foreseen by special inquiry.
Besides, I will always be there to grab your back.
Randall: You mean you will *have* my back.
Mone: Yes, that is what I said.
A heavy and threatening sky all day. Drizzle. Mostly calm. Light wind is now filling in from the NE. It is due to strengthen overnight and swing NW. A nice sailing wind for our last 170 miles into Dutch Harbor.
At this rate, we should arrive before sundown on Friday.
This article was syndicated from The Figure 8 Voyage