Thursday 6 August 2015
The Fun Continues
Since my last post we have been traveling toward Vanuatu. We had the winds from behind as I described in my last blog and it was quite comfortable. We did 191 nautical miles in the 24 hours after we turned Southwest at 4 PM. As the wind started to come more from behind we put up the small spinnaker which is able to handle winds up to 25 knots. The next day the winds decreased and we put up the big spinnaker (the para sail) and we were getting good speed. Bill noticed that one of our shrouds (a metal wire that holds up the mast) was starting to unravel meaning some of the strands were no longer holding. After closer inspection and thought we decided we needed to put a line around the spreader behind the mast and down to where the shroud attached to the deck in case the shroud decided to give way. Down came the para sail for a smoother ride and up the mast went Zeke to attach the line around the mast 23 feet up. Once we got the line in place and attached up went the para sail again. Soon after the wind died and Zeke decided we should motor, charge the batteries and see if we could still make a hope for arrival time before customs closed on Friday. The wind al=most completely died so down came the para sail. I think we were in the eye of the storm at this point because it was clear skies and very little or no wind. Following a great dinner(according to the crew) which I prepared it was off to bed with the engine still chugging along. We had received an email indicating if we did not arrive by customs closing time we could still come ashore for the weekend and deal with customs on Monday. There was a great sigh of relief on board. Off to bed for the 2 of us not on shift. I awoke to the boat violently bouncing up and down in my berth at the front of one of the hulls in the catamaran. After attempting to sleep for about an hour I decided to move to the pilot house to see if I could get any sleep. Both Bill and Zeke were in there. I asked Zeke "How come you are not in bed?" His reply was "I was too worried about the shroud we just broke." Good thing we put the line up just in case it broke!! The wind was 25 to 30 knots and we were banging into them. At 3 AM I started my shift after a little bit more sleep. Part way through Zeke came up. Guess he wasn't getting much sleep and I think he was looking for something to eat. I went out for my regular check to insure there were no boats close by and got a shock. The wind generator was tilted back at a 45 degree angle rather the straight up and down. I told Zeke. We got on our bathing suits because there was a fair amount of spray flying and grabbed a line to try to bring the wind generator back to vertical. After several attempts and a second line and a half hour or more of work we finally got the wind generator more or less secured and close to vertical. As we entered the pilot house I turned to Zeke and said "Are we having fun yet". We are now about 75 miles from our destination and 18 miles from Lolvavavana Passage. Winds are 18 to 23 knots and we are headed into the waves.