LAT 06 29.0N
LONG 148 11.0E
ETA 0600 24 Jan 2012
COG 300 SOG 10
WEATHER Wind 095@14kts, Sea calm, Swell N1.5m E1m, Cloud 4/8 Cb Cl Ci, Baro 1006.1 Conditions Perfect!
Finally the winds that we have been searching for have arrived without squalls or storms. We are now sailing along at 6
degrees north, nicely powered up in the direction we want to go! To add to our luxury sail, the counter current that we
were experiencing earlier this morning has turned around and is now flowing with us giving us another 1/2 kt SOG.
Our Gold Coast Medium weight spinnaker has also successfully been re-repaired and is flying beautifully ahead of the yacht
powering her along at maximum speed for the 10-12kts of wind that we currently hold.
Its times like this that I wish I could view the yacht tracker and see what the other yachts are doing as I am hoping that
the investment that we made to sail further north is now paying off. Here at sea we do not have the luxury of viewing the
real time tracker and must rely on plotting the other yachts position at the 6 hourly sked to get a trend on what they are
doing and what tactics they may be considering. Whatever the other yachts are doing at the moment I have a pretty good
feeling that over the next 48 hours we will be doing a lot better provided that the weather stays as predicted.
My routing has taken us over 100nm north of the rest of the fleet to search for more trades and better currents. It takes
us closer to the the islands surrounding the Gray Feather Bank and then onto the beautiful Palau Islands before we begin to
head south to Marore Islands. Paper Charts for the area north of our current position are not held onboard so unfortunately
we can not get too close and we navigate with caution even though we are over 30nm to the south of the dangers. Electronic
chats on our navigation computer do cover the area but not in enough detail to get to close. Even if we did have the most
accurate charts trying to race through the area would be hazardous as the Pilot books warn of uncharted dangers and poor surveys.
As we near the islands of one of the more remote regions of the Pacific there is an increase in the abundance in wild life
with daily spotting of dolphins, and flocks of birds dive bombing schools of fish. We also have the occasional bird trying
to steal our windex which we need to some how disguise as a predator to scare them away in future. The increase in wildlife is a pleasure to watch and hopefully it remains like that for the future.
Crew today were given the “pirate” brief as required by HQ before we enter in to the pirate affected areas in the Celebes
Sea and Molucca Sea and of course I gave it to them while wearing pirate attire just to make the brief all a bit more real.
Though piracy is not a major concern in the areas that we are racing through we are in a good position to not be to
concerned about pirates given that we don’t own the boat, have nothing of value onboard apart from ourselves, and will no
doubt outnumber any skiff or small craft. Additionally we have the ability to contact HQ and MRCC at a moments notice if
required. Regardless if there are pirates or not as they say if you have a plan in place it probably wont happen to you.
Still no signs of Monsoonal Storm clouds this afternoon, lets keep fingers crossed that we don’t see them for a long long time.
Yacht tracker viewed at http://www.clipperroundtheworld.com