We are currently in position 29 36S 13 02E and saillng at 6 knots on a course of 330M. The wind is S at 12-15 knots with a slight sea and 1m SW swell. We are sailing under full main and single-furled yankee. Clear sky. A beautiful sunny day. Champagne Sailing! Our day's run was 151nm (again!) and we have 1192nm to go.
Yesterday afternoon the winds stayed around 18 knots until late in the afternoon when they piped up to 20-25 and swung from SSE to S. Naturally the change of wind direction prompted a gybe but the extra wind only made it a little more fun. Half an hour later the wind moderated to 15-18 knots. Since then we've been broad reaching on port tack with Kazi the Aries vane gear steering very well.
We had one reef in the main all yesterday afternoon and overnight. At dawn this morning the wind dropped a little more so we're now under full broad-reaching sail. The seas gradually settled this morning and now conditions are just about perfect. The boat is loving it, she trucks along at 6.5 to 7 knots solidly "in the groove".
The HF radio net now has about 10 yachts reporting in each morning. Several also chat in the afternoon. The boats are spread out in a triangle encompassing St Helena, Walvis Bay and Cape Town. Happily there are now two boats behind us, adding a boat which departed from Saldanha Bay. Twould be nice to overtake someone but the chances of that are vanishingly small (since they're all way bigger than us)!
We're now running 6 hour watches overnight and 3 hours during the day. So far that's working out quite well, mainly because of the relatively benign sailing conditions. We're eating well too, with the good conditions allowing Nic to "cook up a storm" each evening. The Cape Town fresh veggies are holding up well.