14 Dec 2012

[Captains Blog] Day 18 15.1N 53.4W less than 450 miles to go!

Yesterday was a great sailing day until tea-time when we suddenly lost the wind.  We knew light winds were forecast but expected them in another 36 hours and could really have done with another 200 miles or so under wind power.  So we now have the dilemma about using the engine and our fuel reserves.  To the best of our calculations we have 180 litres of fuel left, which should equate to 90 hours of motoring at low revs.  And with just under 500 miles left when the wind failed, we needed 100 hours of fuel if we were to motor all the way.  So, it was a very close and a tough decision as to when we should / should not use the engine.  The consensus yesterday evening was that we would look to sail through the night on wind power alone but we abandoned that when our speed dropped to less than 2 knots.  So now we're motor-sailing on low revs and achieving 3.5 knots through the water, over 4 knots speed over ground (because of the current).

One "feature" of last night was the meteor shower in the Castor and Pollux area of the night sky.  And what a night sky: billions of stars on show with no light pollution to affect them and myriad shooting stars.  Something to keep us occupied in a night when nothing much else was happening.

We broke into the Fray Bentos meat pies for dinner yesterday.  Paul had sampled one once before but for the rest of us it was a new culinary adventure, probably better than we anticipated and it certainly filled a hole.  That said, Paul and my appetites are reducing as the weather gets warmer, although we haven't noticed a similar trend in Phil & Ed!

Our ETA given the light airs is now Monday maybe even Tuesday, although we are hopeful of regaining wind over the weekend.  And then it will be back into party mode after 3 "dry" weeks.  We were all discussing this today and agree that none of us has missed alcohol .... sailing is a good detox indeed.