Day 15, Falkland Islands to St Helena

1030Z 30MAR22, Day 15, Falkland Islands to St Helena. Oh what a difference a day makes! Yesterday was a nice day, good sailing, some sun, some clouds. We made easy progress mostly in the right direction.

Current Position: 38 06S / 024 47W
24 hour progress: 120nm, 5kts avg SOG, 3 hours of engine time. Overall progress for the passage is 1,931nm, approximately 1,661nm left to go via a great circle route to St Helena.

Yesterday morning saw us shaking out all the reefs and trying to sail with full sails on a broad reach (port tack). The seas were a bit lumpy from the left over seas of the winds of the day before. By mid morning speeds were slow and the winds were very light. We decided to turn on the engine for a spell rather than bounce around.

We took advantage of the engine time to make some water and try to troubleshoot the Watt&Sea a little bit. Unfortunately no big break through. It is producing power when spinning, but not spinning as easily as it should. The manufacturer is being responsive and helpful. Our best guess is that a bearing for the propeller shaft is dying. Seems like service will be required.

Within a couple of hours of turning on the engine, the winds set up and filled in. We turned off the engine and set sail again on a port broad reach with full main and genoa. We sailed well and just a bit north of rhumb line. It made for a very pleasant day and nice sailing.

We had the door open all day and are enjoying the warmer temperatures. The boat is still a bit damp but it is warmer and we are shedding layers and blankets. No shorts have appeared yet, but everyone has been down to short sleeve T-shirts inside.

Night time saw our course bend to the north a bit but it seemed worth continuing to sail in the deep broad reach as long as the wind remained westerly. The skies were clear and the stars brilliant. By sunrise the wind had shifted more southerly and we decided to gybe despite dying winds. This saw us heading on rhumb line again sailing towards a rising sun. In the end, we were able to close out day 15 still sailing as the winds came back up to 10-15kts after the wind shift to the south settled in.

In yesterday's bird watching, we again had very few visitors. But there were a handful of giant petrels and albatrosses. Daxton is becoming desperate to fish. We still haven't gotten up the desire to deal with one yet though…

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