Randall Reeves

Chafe Discovery

7 Feb

February 5, 2019/Day 124

Noon Position: 46 30S  151 33E

Course(t)/Speed(kts): E 5

Miles since departure: 17,294

Avg. Miles/Day: 139

Long day. Was on the foredeck (now don’t recall why) when I noted on the #2 genoa unusual chafe to the webbing that secures the clew ring to the clew of the sail. Closer inspection showed that of the four straps around the ring, the top two had worn through and the bottom one was a third gone.

Spent the remainder of the day switching that sail out for the spare in the anchor locker. The webbing is monstrously strong ...

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An Unexpected Blow

6 Feb

February 4, 2019/Day 123

Noon Position: 46 42S  148 16E

Course(t)/Speed(kts): E 7

Miles since departure: 17,157

Avg. Miles/Day: 139

It’s the kind of day you cancel appointments for. You don’t take calls. You pay attention.

We rode the low’s northwesterly phase overnight; brisk winds to 25. I had the twins poled out with a couple tucks in each and Monte set to keep wind dead aft.

The westerly phase filled in before noon and brought with it waves of squalls to blot out the otherwise blue sky. Winds increased to 25 and 30 with 35 in the squalls common. ...

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Quick Update

5 Feb

February 3, 2019/Noon Position: 46 27S  144 36E

 

A dynamic weather day. Rain and wind changes. Drizzle and wind changes. A huge trough passes over, with wind changes. Now it’s clear with cloud on the horizon. Hard to keep up. Have done complete sail changes three times and have been adjusting sail all day. At least that’s the way it seems.

Fast time east. So that’s good.

 

I’ve abandoned the idea of going below the coming high pressure area two days hence. Realistically, it would have required a dip all the way to 50S, a latitude I’m not ...

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A Befuddlement over Water

4 Feb

February  2, 2019/Day 121

Noon Position: 45 43S  141 17E

Course(t)/Speed(kts): ESE 6

Miles since departure: 16,860

Avg. Miles/Day: 139

 

Another steady night of wind aft but without stars. I woke often to make sure it continued to blow from the WNW, as the forecast called for a northerly shift which would have required deck work, but none came. I got a solid eight hours sleep. Second night of that.

I’m edging S a bit in an attempt to get below a high (a blob of calm) that will settle in here in two days, and from that point ...

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What Glows of a Clear Night

3 Feb

February 1, 2019/Day 120

Noon Position: 44 51S  138 02E

Course(t)/Speed(kts): ExS 6

Miles since departure: 16,713

Avg. Miles/Day: 139

A clear, steady night.

One squall, epic in size and darkness of hue and pouring a Niagara of rain, a squall that had been on the approach all afternoon, a squall that looked to climb up the taffrail and for which I put on foul weather gear and cleared sheets of their coils … was too late!

Ha ha ha ha, laugh I as the sun sets. And as stars begin to wink on, the squall fizzles and spits and ...

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Dear Lord, Deliver me from Hobart

2 Feb

January 31, 2019/Day 119

Noon Position: 44 21S  134 58E

Course(t)/Speed(kts): ExS 7

Miles since departure: 16,578

Avg. Miles/Day: 139

 

Good miles today, but I’ve been having a tough time getting the full giddy-up out of Mo due to squalls.

Ran all night with a triple reefed main and double reefed jib, very conservative in 25 knots from the WSW, and was still up and on deck three times to ease sheets and help Monte get back on course when a troll passed through.

Easy day. We’re sliding into a high pressure system, and so winds are lightening.

—...

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Rolling Again

1 Feb

 

January 30, 2019/Day 118

Noon Position: 43 45S  131 34E

Course(t)/Speed(kts): ExS 7

Miles since departure: 16,428

Avg. Miles/Day: 139

It’s been a slow week for miles, but today we finally had an average day of 146 miles noon-to-noon. That ties our best day this last seven.

But we’re rolling now, and Mo feels fast again, except for the few hours before dawn when I should have flown more sail but opted for sleep. Deserved sleep, as we spent the night being t-boned by one squall after the other, and I was frequently on deck taming the twin headsails ...

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Small Disasters and Monte’s Air of Nonchalance

31 Jan

January , 2019/Day 117

Noon Position: 43 20S  128 19E

Course(t)/Speed(kts): ;E 7

Miles since departure: 16,282

Avg. Miles/Day: 139

 

It was a day of small disasters.

First, rain came in after I’d bagged the drogue and got us underway, bringing with it a shifting wind the likes of which I’ve never seen. From 11 knots to 35 knots and anywhere from 295 degrees to 239 degrees. The poles went up and then came down. The working jib went free and full and then reefed and then full again; then gybed and then… And all the while, Mo heaved ...

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Another Night on Drogue

30 Jan

January 28, 2019

Day 116

Noon Position: 42 51S  125 23E

We’d done 102 miles as of noon.

As it turns out, I was over-cautious with this third low.

I deployed the SHARK drogue again at 4pm and then slept until 10pm, when weather started to come on. I then made a cup of tea, dressed in foulies, and sat up with the low until 3am, well after the forecast called for it to peak. Winds never got much above 30-35, and they were more in the high 20s. All good sailing wind, except for the heavy, lunging ...

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