Day 11, Passage to Easter Island

1245Z 07SEP19, Day 11, Ecuador to Easter Island. We continue to make direct progress and good speed. The winds and seas have picked up. Cooking is now more challenging.

Current Position: 17 13S 099 01W
24 hour progress: 148nm, 6.2kts avg SOG. Overall progress for the passage is 1469nm with approximately 830nm to go on the great circle route. Winds continue to vary and are now averaging around 25kts, with gusts in the 30s. We are currently sailing a beam reach with 3 reefs in the main and 3 in the genoa. If conditions continue to build we will switch to the staysail.

The crew is doing well. Yesterday we all conserved some energy with lots of lounging around reading and napping in the larger seas. Our red-footed booby hitch hiker left us. I guess we have gone as far as he was going or he didn't like the anchor bashing into the sea in the larger sea state. The conditions are a bit more challenging but all is well and spirits are good as the miles continue to click away.

Zephyros is taking great care of us. Our only current issue is with faulty readings from the speed log. It hasn't consistently worked right since we left Ecuador—it has periods of working ok and then it starts acting up again. It currently seems to be all over the place, reading rather slow, and then way too high. In many ways it doesn't matter much. We have lots of SOG (speed over ground) indicators based on our GPS positions. The biggest issue is that the gyropilot computer has no way to read True Wind Speed (TWS). It calculates TWS based on the Apparent Wind Speed (AWS), which is what the boat is seeing and the wind instruments read, the boat speed and sailing angles. As we are largely sailing a beam reach now, it isn't a big deal because AWS and TWS are pretty close regardless of the boat speed. We base many decisions, like when to reef, what sails to use, on the wind conditions. We are adjusting and working through it. The fix may be as simple as cleaning it off and recalibrating once we can easily dive it or dry out. Just another boat headache / challenge to overcome and a to do item for the never ending list of boat projects.

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