Saturday, 6 February 2016

Cape Town Outbound Day 5

Hi everyone,
We are currently in position 26 50S 09 21E and saillng at 4-5 knots on a course of 300M. The wind is SSE at 7-10 knots with a slight sea and a low SW swell.  We are sailing under full main and yankee.  Scattered cumulus clouds.  Another beautiful sunny day but with too little wind!  Our day's run was 136nm and we have 1062nm to go.

Dawn this morning

The last 24 hours has been very pleasant.  Until mid-morning today we were sailing along at around 6 knots in a nice 10-15 knot breeze.  The seas were low so the boat was quite steady.  Nic spent this morning baking so we have a loaf and a set of rolls.  THIS is the cruising life!

Last night was mostly cloud-free and also moonless until a couple of hours before dawn.  The night sky was stunning.  Jupiter was very bright and both Saturn and Mars were clearly visible.  Venus was extremely bright when it rose about the same time as the moon.

The sked this morning was disrupted a little by other traffic on the frequency we've been using.  6224kHz is the main ship-ship frequency in the 6MHz marine band so it's not surprising we encounter other traffic.  Using DSC would allow the frequency of each sked to be digitally transmitted to all yachts at the start of the sked.  This morning most yachts did change to the secondary frequency 4146kHz but several didn't so couldn't share their position and news.

During the small hours of the last two mornings I've been scanning the amateur radio bands.  Propagation conditions are excellent.  I could clearly hear stations from all over the USA and in Mexico, as well as in South America.  This was on the 40m (7MHz) and 20m (14MHz) bands.

As the wind lightened off it has been swinging from S to SSE.  We expect to gybe shortly and head north.  This should poistion us well for the forecast winds over the next few days.  Winds are expected to pick back up to 12-15 knots later today and then stay for some days.  Here's hoping the forecasts are right.

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