It just doesn’t stop

So we had a relatively warm and calm day for drying out yesterday. It was rather frustrating weather wise, as the wind kept teasing us – pretending to be a good breeze for the spinnaker and then disappearing before we could take advantage of it.
We were causing quite a lot of the frustration ourselves – it feels like every time we tried to raise a kite, there was a different error that stopped us or made us hastily drop it. Halyards wrapped around spreaders was a favorite, and blown tack lines the second. Of course when we hastily drop, we have to wool and bag again, making e everybody even tireder, shorter of sleep, and more error prone than ever. we finally got a kite (I believe it was the A3) up in the evening, in a promising breeze, only to have it completely die on us within seconds. We tried everything we could to sail with it for about an hour, before we had to give up and take it down to top it helplessly flopping itself into a wrap around the rigging. Of course no sooner was it down then the breeze reappeared. We debated raising another one – but in the end decided to wait ‘five minutes’ – Eric commenting that 5 minutes was the time he needed to go down and shoot himself in the head. Frustration for Skipper and crew alike! In the end the 5 minutes stretched to about 4 hours – we raised the A3 again towards midnight. Alarmingly it managed to scrape off all the wool on the way up, so that the whole foot dropped in the water and threatened to stick under the boat. For a moment it looked as though we were going to have to drop the whole thing into the sea, then come back to retrieve it. That would have been a Henri Lloyd first – and fortunately some heroic pulling, sweating and grinding by Nick and Eric and the rest of the mast and foredeck crew saved the situation. and we were able to fly the kite in exciting conditions through the night. Strong winds and lightening with big waves made it a wild ride. As a postscript when we finally dropped because the wind had shifted, the tackline was entangled with the trip line and we actually had to cut it to free the foot of the kite. Will our spinnaker problems ever end?
Today was largely a showery day, with blustery winds keeping us helms on our toes. We had a few seagulls keeping us company, soaring fearlessly at about head height. One of them in particular we think was a DLL spy – he seemed to have an unhealthy interest in watching the instrument panel over the helmsperson’s shoulder. THe bird watching has been pretty good – as well as the gulls we have had some large shearwaters, and a couple of Laysan albatrosses, as well as darker ones, most likely the black-legged kind.
Now we are speeding along in a nice reaching wind on a flat sea, with stars, great sailing for team Henri Lloyd 50YOPS in the North Eastern Pacific.

2 thoughts on “It just doesn’t stop

  1. Hi Sarah,
    We read your blogs every day and are absolutely amazed at your efforts and journey. We are full of admiration for you and the team and think about you and talk about your adventures all the time. You are amazing!!!
    All our love from the Bridport contingency, Andy, Julie, Margaret & Ollie xxx

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