Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Like a bat out of hell

As if the gates of heaven opened, the chains that held us to Tierra del Fuego broke into dust and the sweet air of the ocean started to fill our lungs.

From when we left the anchorage of the Straits of Magellan four and a half days ago we have travelled 596 nautical miles, which makes an average speed of 5.5 knots, now to any sailor, that is not very fast for a 67 foot yacht !

The route which we travelled was not straight by a long shot, it had twists and turns, some round parts and some curved but the actual distance that we should of taken was 402 nautical miles, so one might ask is the skipper deranged or was there another factor that brought this about?

The slip out of the straits through the centre of the low did work well, the weather system that we had after that was not that well.

Out of the 4 nights we had to hove too for 3 of them (to stop the boat whilst at sea) . The counter currents along the Chilean coast made the seas even well off shore where we were like a washing machine, so even when we had boat speed, we were stopped dead by the continual hobby horsing and gyrations that Xplore made each time as we came over a wave crest.

A few technical, mechanical and sails issues also kept the speed down, and the atmosphere cool along with the temperature, the team on board was also settling into their own rhythm and routines along with their sea legs.

But like all sailors know, ever day and ever watch can be so totally different, and we at last saw what we wanted in the prognostic weather charts....... the re-emergence of the South Pacific High Pressure Cell!!

From late morning yesterday we have seen the back of the South, hell has been closed and heaven awaits those who are patient.

Our mileage that we have travelled in less than 24 hours, in the right direction has changed the faces of everyone on board.

So like a bat out of hell, we'll be coming on back to you


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