Day 22, Falkland Islands to St Helena

1030Z 06APR22, Day 22, Falkland Islands to St Helena. Yesterday the weather was mostly cloudy with only occasional sun. We did get a bit of rain but not enough to remove the layer of salt on the boat.

Current Position: 27 20S / 014 35W
24 hour progress: 121nm, 5kts avg SOG. Overall progress for the passage is 2,855nm, approximately 836nm left to go via a great circle route to St Helena.

Yesterday we had a pleasant sail for the day. Progress was ok, not exactly the direction we would like, but boat speeds were good and the ride was comfortable enough. The daylight hours saw us sailing with 1 reef in the main and a full genoa as tight to the wind as we could get. Truth be told, we were all getting a bit sick of being heeled over so much! 4 days on a starboard tack, more than a day close hauled, and everything moving to the left side of the boat was all taking a toll.

In the late afternoon, we were in the midst of pulling everything out of the refrigerator in search of a wayward pork tenderloin, when the winds began to build a bit. We are convinced that there is some cosmic entity that sits at a wind/sea switch waiting to turn it up whenever we want to prepare a meal. It doesn't really matter what time of day, just that we are committed to more complex food preparation. In any case, we added a 2nd reef to the main to level things out a little and got on with the messy search. The tenderloin was eventually located hiding exactly where it was supposed to be in the meat box near the cold plate at the top of the refrigerator.

Then after dinner, the excitement continued. Did we dare to say that the forecasts suggested winds less than 20kts for the rest of the trip? What were we thinking?!? You should never tempt Poseidon (or Neptune) like that! After dinner was mostly consumed (Daxton kept eating for quite a while as he nearly devoured an entire tenderloin on his own) the wind speeds came up to around 30kts and became very gusty. We ended up back to 3 reefs in the main and switched to the stay sail. It was slow, but more comfortable close hauled in the stronger winds as the seas also began to build. Then, as if this wasn't all interesting enough on its own, the winds shifted more towards the north meaning that our northern course now had quite a bit of west and not so much north. Time to tack! At least it is easy on the stay sail. We were also happy to change the heel (lean) of Zephyros to the other side - even if that meant a bit of time spent re-securing numerous things as we now shifted everything back from left to right (again).

Over the course of the night we rolled the stay sail back in and switched back to the genoa and gradually shook out reefs from the main. We closed out day 22, back at 1 reef in the main and a full genoa with a course that is east with a nice touch of north. It's actually a bit better course than we had expected. We shall see how long it holds.

We had the fishing line in for a few minutes yesterday, but Daxton deemed it the wrong point of sail and a bit too rough so the line was quickly retrieved without a fish. We shall try our luck today as the fishing line is already deployed this morning.

We continued to watch our petrel friends. There were about 5 of them that continued to follow us. We don't think they are the giant petrel or at least not the southern (Chilean) version. They have a white facial mark. Sometimes they land in the path of our boat, wait for us to pass and then start soaring around again. Yesterday two were in the water and we passed close by as one was eating what appeared to be a squid.

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