2000Z 26SEP19, Day 5, Easter Island to Puerto Montt, Chile. It has been yet another slow progress kind of day. We mostly motored through the night and morning, as we slowly traversed the middle of a squashed high with winds in the 5-10kt range. Sailing was difficult with the low winds on a broad reach due to the long swell that keeps the sails from staying full so we stuck with the engine.
Current Position: 33 05S / 101 32W
24 hour progress: 104nm, 4.3kts avg SOG, almost 14 hours of motor sailing
Overall progress for the passage is 602nm with approximately 1410nm to the entrance canal to get to Puerto Montt. The weather is cool and sunny with occasional drizzle - though it is nice and warm in the shelter of our pilot house when the sun shines. We are now sailing a starboard tack, broad reach, with full sails. Winds are currently 15kts true +/-5kts and the seas have a big, long swell.
We would normally have been sailing the asymmetric in these conditions but we expect the wind will build, and it is unclear when or how quickly that will happen so we are choosing to stay conservative. We returned to sailing just about 2 hours ago. There was a bit of banging of sails for awhile as the waves on the beam are coming from the wrong direction after the wind shifted over. We are already seeing the wind start to build and gusts to 20kts.
The crew are all doing well. The extra sleep continued as the engine droned on. We have reached the stage where everyone is absorbed in their books and the days are blending together.
According to the weather models there is a low setting up to the southeast and we hope we are starting to grab the outer northwest edge of this system. Then the high between Easter Island and mainland Chile should re-establish and we should be able to ride the east side of it to Puerto Montt. We are hopeful that these predictions work out and the wind continues to fill in from here - like Goldilocks not too much and not too little, but just right.