Friday, March 5, 2010

Galapagos to Easter Island Day 11

Pacific Ocean
24 36.6S, 108 42.9W
very far SW of the Galapagos
0700 report

Stars put on a show last night. The big players were there, but one really notices the bits and parts out here - the stars that are not named in a popular constellation. They take over in a way, nearly overwhelming just by their by their numbers, especialy before moonrise. I had a double orb watch, the moon last night and sunrise this AM.

We were faced with a classic tactical cruising decision yesterday as we began calculating pros and cons of pushing a bit and arriving Easter Island late Friday afternoon, or whether to motor easily and arrive daybreak Saturday. Because of the lesser engine time, the push penalty was not as not as great as we imagined it would be, but we were still burning our precious diesel, to be refilled only by dinghy and jerry jug. The best decision came clear by mid afternoon as some wind piped up, albeit directed like a game of pin the tail on the donkey. After completing the chores of anchor retreival and chafe patching, we elected to sail in the wind avaialble and minimize engine time as much as posible. The fact that the crew was content to spend another night and days out here is indicative of developing a voyaging mindset - you are out here so long, it's not so bad, and another day and night doesn't matter. It's a psychological graduation from the concept of delivering the boat from place to place, to cruising.

We carried a light 10 knot SE wind all night, moving a whopping 4 - 5 knots close reaching mostly in the direction of Easter Island. As I write, the wind is definitely easing with the sun's incipient appearance , and we shall see what transpires through the day. Swells have slowly increased through the night, and will increase more over the next 24 hours. They are spaced with a 7 second period, and are not uncomfortable, but do challenge the sails ability to hold the wind.

Jo prepared a home made baked mac and cheese for dinner last night. She had been thinking of a good friend of ours, a mac and cheese aficionado, who would order it over any dish at Miranda. It was fantastic and he is clearly here in sprit. Aloha! After the season 1 finale of 24, we all slept pretty well (in turns) through the gentle conditions.

Wind is now down to 5 -6 knots and we are moving 2.6 - 3.0 knots. 157 nm miles to go. I don't want to do the math!

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