Rich Wilson

Out of the Trades

11 Feb

We are finally out of the worst of the pounding of the trade winds, we still have 15-25 knots of wind, but the direction has shifted from Northeast to East approximately, and the seas have followed, so as we head North, we are not going so much into the waves.

There is still a tremendous amount of spray coming over the boat, and sitting at the chart table at night it seems that every few minutes there is the ‘donk’ of a flying fish ricocheting off the coach roof. Sometimes they are deflected over the boat and back into the ...

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Out of the Trades

11 Feb

We are finally out of the worst of the pounding of the trade winds, we still have 15-25 knots of wind, but the direction has shifted from Northeast to East approximately, and the seas have followed, so as we head North, we are not going so much into the waves.

There is still a tremendous amount of spray coming over the boat, and sitting at the chart table at night it seems that every few minutes there is the ‘donk’ of a flying fish ricocheting off the coach roof. Sometimes they are deflected over the boat and back into the ...

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20 Degrees North

10 Feb

We’ve reached the 20 degree north line, which is approximately the outer limits for the trade winds. They’ve moved north a little bit, over the last couple of days, so we’re still in them, but they should be diminishing in the next 24 hours or so.

20 degrees north is a good milestone. We’re generally aiming in the direction of the Azores. The routing based on these forecasts is all over the place. The weather reports are 6 hours apart and may go in completely different directions. One might go off towards Cape Finisterre. We had one routing that went ...

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20 Degrees North

10 Feb

We’ve reached the 20 degree north line, which is approximately the outer limits for the trade winds. They’ve moved north a little bit, over the last couple of days, so we’re still in them, but they should be diminishing in the next 24 hours or so.

20 degrees north is a good milestone. We’re generally aiming in the direction of the Azores. The routing based on these forecasts is all over the place. The weather reports are 6 hours apart and may go in completely different directions. One might go off towards Cape Finisterre. We had one routing that went ...

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Pounding Along

9 Feb

We are at the latitude of the windward leeward islands down in the Caribbean and just about half way across Africa. We are getting occasional notifications through the Inmarsat-C, reports about piracy, warnings to stay away from some of the coastal towns off Western Africa. So we’re in that range, but quite a ways off.

We are crashing as we go across the trade winds, pounding along. It is hard to imagine that everything holds together. Sometimes it doesn’t, but hopefully it will. I think every skipper that I’ve heard from ahead that has gone through this thinks that this ...

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Pounding Along

9 Feb

We are at the latitude of the windward leeward islands down in the Caribbean and just about half way across Africa. We are getting occasional notifications through the Inmarsat-C, reports about piracy, warnings to stay away from some of the coastal towns off Western Africa. So we’re in that range, but quite a ways off.

We are crashing as we go across the trade winds, pounding along. It is hard to imagine that everything holds together. Sometimes it doesn’t, but hopefully it will. I think every skipper that I’ve heard from ahead that has gone through this thinks that this ...

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Safety Below Deck

8 Feb

Through the night we continued to make progress north. The trade winds have been moderate so far, which is far easier on the boat and skipper. Nonetheless, there have been some tremendous crashes that rattle every corner and joint of the boat.

The chart table bench is athwartship in the boat, and on a pivot, so that you can make it somewhat horizontal, even if the boat, with fully canted keel, and 3 or 4 ballast tanks filled with 3 or 4 tons of water, is still heeling at 25-30 degrees. I make the bench as horizontal as possible then ...

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Safety Below Deck

8 Feb

Through the night we continued to make progress north. The trade winds have been moderate so far, which is far easier on the boat and skipper. Nonetheless, there have been some tremendous crashes that rattle every corner and joint of the boat.

The chart table bench is athwartship in the boat, and on a pivot, so that you can make it somewhat horizontal, even if the boat, with fully canted keel, and 3 or 4 ballast tanks filled with 3 or 4 tons of water, is still heeling at 25-30 degrees. I make the bench as horizontal as possible then ...

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Into the Northeast Trades

7 Feb

Finally, the Northeast trades arrived, or we worked our way far enough north to get into them. They have been more North Northeast than Northeast, and we’ve been sailing higher I think than the others before, relative to the wind, but only because we have less of it, around 15 knots.

With 2 reefs and the staysail, we were at about 9.5 knots, so this morning went back to the solent, and got to about 10.5-11 knots. But we are now at the maximum for the solent and will have to go back to the staysail shortly. I know that ...

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Into the Northeast Trades

7 Feb

Finally, the Northeast trades arrived, or we worked our way far enough north to get into them. They have been more North Northeast than Northeast, and we’ve been sailing higher I think than the others before, relative to the wind, but only because we have less of it, around 15 knots.

With 2 reefs and the staysail, we were at about 9.5 knots, so this morning went back to the solent, and got to about 10.5-11 knots. But we are now at the maximum for the solent and will have to go back to the staysail shortly. I know that ...

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