Randall Reeves

Edging North

17 Jan

January 15, 2019/Day 103

Noon Position: 46 30S  82 58E

Course(t)/Speed(kts): NxE 6+

Miles since departure: 14,309

Avg. Miles/Day: 139


Fog all night. Early in the evening, I could see a half moon to the NW, hazy, pale, cold, and a star here and there, but without context, they went unnamed. The reefs stayed in though the wind faded as the night matured; we still made our six knots. Enough till morning.

I woke to rain but just quick squalls. By ten o’clock the sky had dried without clearing, its shade of gray had brightened without becoming bright. And ...

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On Fast Currents and Fresh Water Usage

16 Jan

January 14, 2019/Day 103

Noon Position: 46 35S  79 23E

Course(t)/Speed(kts): ExS 8, 9 and 10 knots

Miles since departure: 14,161

Avg. Miles/Day: 139


We worked through a small depression overnight with NW winds to 25 and 30. Rain. When I came on deck in the morning, Mo was creaming through nearly flat, ice blue water at 9 and 10 knots. Clearly, we had a whopping current with us, but for how long I can’t say. By noon, we’d racked up 176 miles (7.3 knots, hour after hour) since the previous noon, a number we’ve approached but a handful ...

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100 Days

15 Jan

January 13, 2019

Noon Position: 46 26S  75 53E

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

Miles since departure: 13,984

Avg. Miles/Day: 138

I woke to a W wind and doused the main in favor of the twin headsails before the second cup of coffee. There had been a persistent drizzle since first light, so the rest of the morning was dedicated to refining my water catchment system off the main sail cover. This entailed moving the drain on the cover all the way forward near the mast. By the time I finished, the drizzle had retracted back into the sky; a test of ...

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Day 100 and Breakfast on Mo

14 Jan

January 12, 2019

Noon Position: 46 21S  71 14E

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

Miles since departure: 13,824

Avg. Miles/Day: 138


Up in the night, again. At about one o’clock, wind had finally found its way into the north. I gybed the poled-out jib and main by the light of a headlamp in soft and noticeably warmer winds. The sea felt relaxed. Above–briefly and between cloud–Orion marched his way across the sky, a rare sighting. I quickly reeled off the stars I knew: Betelgeuse, Bellatrix, Alnilam, Rigel. None more were visible. Then right back to bed.

We’ve been running on ...

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Anger Management

13 Jan

January 11, 2019

Noon Position: 46 08S  67 49E

Course(t)/Speed(kts): E 5.5

Miles since departure: 13,682

Avg. Miles/Day: 138


Strange weather day. We are riding the bottom of a small high. Winds have been due to veer from SW to W to NW and lighten significantly as the high moves over us and then on to the E. Accordingly, this morning I poled out the working jib, but left the main up, thinking I’d jibe around as the day developed. That combination, poled out headsail and main, can handle a wider wind range than both headsails poled.

Wind direction ...

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Night Work and a Nearly Lazy Day

12 Jan

January 10, 2019

Noon Position: 45 49S  64 19E

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

Miles since departure: 13,534

Avg. Miles/Day: 138

Wind shifts brought me to the deck twice last night. The 1am visit found Mo heading due N on a fresh southwesterly and required a full switcharoo from one tack to the other. This means rolling up the headsail (so as to get it around the inner forestay) and moving running backs and vangs from one side to the other. In the rain and 25-knot winds. It took a while. At 3am, wind had built such that I had to ...

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Welcome to the Antipodes

11 Jan

January 9, 2019/Day 97

Noon Position: 45 59S  60 30E

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

Miles since departure: 13,374

Avg. Miles/Day: 138

Slow night and too much northing. I left reefs in expecting wind to veer into the NW and strengthen after midnight. It did neither, and Mo worked up above 46S, which we didn’t need. Winds have come on fresh from the NW this afternoon, and so we’re slowly drifting back S a bit.

I could have risen and made sail changes but chose to sleep. Each time I rose to examine our course, it seemed the detour was minimal and ...

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Knockdown. Not Today. And Tortore.

10 Jan

January 8, 2019/Day 96

Noon Position: 46 18S  56 54E

Course(t)/Speed(kts): ExN

Miles since departure: 13,223

Avg. Miles/Day: 138


Winds stayed W most of the night, oscillating between 25 and 35. Mo wore just a double reefed working jib and rode like a mechanical bull. Not so noticeable in my bunk, which is well below the waterline way down in the main cabin, but try to make a cup of coffee and you risked your life.

At 8am, we passed just north of where Mo was knocked down in a gale last February 18th. The knockdown broke a ...

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One Third of the Way

10 Jan

January 7, 2019/Day 95

Noon Position: 46 58S  53 14E

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

Wind(t/tws): WxN 17 – 26

Miles since departure: 13,066

Avg. Miles/Day: 138


Two pleasant milestones today. One, we’ve achieved an average of 143 miles per day since rounding Cape Horn. This, to me, is a magic number as it means we’re cranking out 1000 miles a week. With wind and better management, Mo can do more, but that’s not at all bad.

Two, we have now crossed 120 of the 360 meridians between our first Cape Horn rounding and our second. One third of the Southern ...

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