First Day Back at Sea

We motored North for many hours yesterday in the sunshine. The volcanic islands cast such a wind shadow in their lee we were almost 50nm clear of them before we got clear air. Just as the sun set over the Northernmost island, the first sector of the waxing moon appeared overhead also. It was a stunning sight, and a fitting last view of the Azores.

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The breeze built quickly after dark and we spent the night and this morning running in 25knts of wind and surfing large waves. It’s funny how after so long at sea, 20 to 30ft waves become the norm. Rarely before this trip had I ever pushed a boat hard in those conditions, but Dinah was in her element, averaging about 11knts of boatspeed hour after hour.

The one fly in the ointment, if you pardon the pun, is that we have a stowaway. A mosquito seems to wish to go to Ireland on holidays! Every time myself or Andy get up to go on watch we are sporting fresh bites. We’ve both searched and searched for the culprit, but to no avail.

This afternoon we sailed into a warm front as predicted. Grey skies and drizzle for hours. The breeze has dropped right off here in the middle of the front, but in an hour or two the rain should stop, the breeze will swing to the West and build, and we’ll be making good progress again. The flat water and light air for a few hours are quite nice actually, allowing us to tidy up anything that got thrown around in the big seas last night.

Life has settled back into routine watches. We have only about 950nm to go before we see the light from the Old Head of Kinsale and the excitement of shore fall starts to mount again. The forecast for the rest of the trip is looking slightly better than it did yesterday. One of the weather systems I thought we would need to navigate seems to have accelerated, and looks like it will hit Ireland over the next 48hrs, so we’ll miss it. No harm (for us anyway… Enjoy that at home!).

I’m off back out into the drizzle. At least I won’t get bitten out there!

Barry