Off the charts

With less than two thousand miles to go, home and the Golden Gate Bridge are feeling ever closer. In the logbook, we have San Francisco as our destination, and Honolulu as our alternative safe port (some 1200 miles away today!). Eric keeps reminding us that Dutch Harbor in the Aleutians is much closer – but none of us nav assistants have the heart to write somewhere so cold and miserable down, we’d rather go to Hawaii!. Normally the logbook gets updated at midnight each night with the lights and dangers we are likely to encounter in the next 24 hours. As we are so far from anywhere, there are no rocks, reefs, shoals or lighthouses to worry about, and that section should remain empty. THat seems a little boring to me, so I’ve been updating it as the mood takes me. A few nights ago, I put ‘THe Kraken’ as a danger. I don’t think anybody noticed, until Chris came to start the next page 24 hours later. He wanted to know what the Kraken was and if we’d passed it yet – I guess mythical sea monsters have not featured largely in his experience so far. As Hawaii is now so close I’ve been entering perils such as flower leis, hula dancers, and lilikoi – I wonder how long before I’m fired for abusing the log book? Actually, astute readers will have noticed that I frequently mix up my easts and wests in these posts – I’m having trouble with the whole concept of heading east to get to the West Coast from the Far East. What can I say, I’m short of sleep, and once I’ve posted there’s no way to edit. Please don’t tell Eric, or my days as Assistant Navigator will be over very soon! We seem to have throttled back a bit this last couple of days.We are reaching along under white sails in glorious sunshine – sometimes reaching really good surfing speeds (20+), and sometimes not. 2 nights ago we had watery stars for the first night watch. At 4am starboard watch (my new watch) came up on deck to be greeted by the unholy sight of Qingdao passing us, under spinnaker while we held on to main and yankee 2.
Instead of hastily raising a kite and chasing them down, we then proceeded to lower the yankee, as we had noticed several hanks damaged and undone. Sailing with main and staysail alone while the hanks were repired was slower still, and we watched Qingdao sail away over the horizon in a more northerly direction, while we stubbornly held our more easterly course. Only tie will tell how that all works out. We almst raised the A3 an hour ago, but the wind piped up again and we sent it back below. So another restful afternoon in my bunk seems likely. From Henri Lloyd 50YOPS, now definitely in the Eastern Pacific, good afternoon.

2 thoughts on “Off the charts

  1. I’d follow Gareth! Remember this is the leg I took 3rd under Gareth’s watch in 2011-12!!! He definitely
    Has the pacific experience!

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