27 April 2019 – on passage to the Azores, Day 15


April 27th, 2019


North Atlantic 2017 – 2019, Ocean passages

Written by

Richard Farrington

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By Richard. Posted on April 27th, 2019 in North Atlantic 2017 – 2019, Ocean passages.

31:11N  39:08W

Yesterday afternoon the wind died off and we started to experiment with some unusual sail combinations in an effort to keep moving in broadly the right direction.  Eventually, the cruising chute poled out on the end of the main boom with everything else stowed gave us a little over two knots and we contemplated eating Sargasso seaweed when the food runs out.  Harvesting it might be slightly hazardous though: we passed through a school of Portuguese Man’o’War jellyfish, prompting one member of the crew to ask if this meant that we were getting closer to Portugal (and the Azores are, after all, Portuguese).

Sunset saw some improvement and overnight the wind returned from the south and then south west.  It brought some heavy rain showers, but we didn’t mind too much because speeding along soaking wet is infinitely preferable to drifting idly.

Finally this morning around 5am we hoisted the spinnaker and mainsail again and have been enjoying some champagne sailing for a few hours with speeds touching nine knots.  In the last 24 hours we have managed to sail 125 miles.

Sun sights and Meridian Passage have kept us busy and apart from an exciting few minutes when the splice on the spinnaker guy shackle broke (now repaired)we have no significant defects.

We have 680 miles to run to Horta, which is now our planned landfall in the Azores.  It’s about a hundred miles closer to our current position than Punta Delgada and if the wind dies again, it will give us an opportunity to refuel.  On the other hand, if the winds stay favourable, we have a few days before we need to head further east to make Punta Delgada.  The Weather Gods will decide…

Morale remains high onboard.

Richard, Tom and Ed