Friday, 31 July 2015

Cocos-Keeling Inbound Day 10

Hi everyone,
We are now in position 12 00S 97 13E, sailing at 6.0knots on a course of 325 in a 15-20knot SE breeze. The day's run was 159nm and the total so far 1345nm. That's a good day's run for us! Best of all we have less than 20nm to go to Cocos!

Yesterday afternoon the wind continued stubbornly in the SE, putting Cocos-Keeling dead downwind. There was more cloud than on previous days, with one larger cumulus even producing a light shower. Towards evening however the band of cloud moved away and the wind backed to ESE. This allowed us to parallel our route to Cocos, just being about 20nm east of it.

As the evening wore on the wind gradually built. We had a great "sleigh ride" for several hours, sitting on 6.5 to 7.0 knots consistently. Eventually the boat started surfing to 8 knots and got that "skittish" feeling down below. Every move the autopilot made translated into a "shimmy" down below. The wind was 20-25knots. The boat was loving it but it was clearly time to reef! Interesting to ponder the daily runs one could get racing this boat!

After reefing the ride was much more cruisy, although the rolling increased. We sat on 6 knots for the rest of the night. This morning the wind lightened and returned to the SE.

We've seen rubbish and some debris in the water over the last 3 days. Mostly plastic waste such as drink bottles. We've also seen a couple of planks of wood - don't want to hit them! Last night we saw (on AIS only) our first ship for 3 days or so.

It's amazing to know we'll soon be at Cocos-Keeling. I've dreamt of visiting this place for 30 years! Vulcan Spirit arrived there yesterday evening so we will be less than a day behind.

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