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John Log 6 – More bad weather news

Posted by John Newhoff on Saturday, June 9th, 2007 at 4:44 am
Position: 39.1 by -38.5666 map

Today we moved the clocks forward to UTC -1 (UTC stands for ‘universal coordinated time’ and is what we used to refer to as ‘greenwhich mean time’. Pilot’s refer to all UTC times as ‘zulu’). Its 6:12pm as I write this and I just woke up from a nap. I’ve been taking naps pretty much daily as having a couple of two hour watches each night really makes me tired during the days.

Our conditions are largely the same as yesterday, moderately heavy seas and very cloudy. The wind is very damp and nothing dries out once it gets some sea spray on it. Once again, its hard to do much of anything except nap and watch the ocean due to the rolling of boat.

As we start to get within a few days of the Azores, we’ve been trying to pick a target arrival date and time. According to the current plan, if we maintain 6.5 knots, we should arrive in Horta, Azores four days hence on Tuesday morning. That seems a bit optimistic, but we’ll see.

I finished the second book of the trip today: Aloft, by Clyde Edgerton. Its a personal memoir about the author’s experience learning to fly, joining the air force, flying in Vietnam, and his flying experiences after leaving the Air Force. A pretty good, fairly quick read.

We’ve been seeing more Dolphins lately. The most recent groups we’ve seen swim by have included a couple of dolphins jumping completely out of the water as they approached the boat, just spectacular. Gets the whole crew on deck every time.

The evening of the 9th gave us a big disappointment as the weather forecast from Herb indicated that a low pressure system had stalled north of the Azores and would bring gale force winds into our path during our final 18 hour approach to Horta, Azores. Herb actually suggested boats in our area revers course or heave-to in order to stay west of the influence of the low pressure system. This looked to delay our arrival in the Azores for at least another couple of days.

Much wailing and wringing of hands ensued upon receipt of this news, let me tell you!

We finally decided that moving ahead through the night and delaying our final decision until the morning would leave us a full 24 hours to retreat if necessary and so we all hit the sack (except me, as I had the first watch).

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