Data at 8 AM…Engine hours: 3966.9
Fuel consumed yesterday: 83 gal., total leg fuel consumed: 83 gal.
Miles traveled yesterday: 160 nm, total leg miles traveled: 160 nm
Weather: SW winds 10 kts., mostly cloudy, temp ~75 degrees
Seas: is there such a thing as discordant smooth jazz?
Water temperature: 73.2 F
The dark hours watches, for whatever reason, were filled with intra-fleet radio chatter. Perhaps there is some cosmic need to be connected as we enter the largest expanse of emptiness. There may be many other theories or no reason whatsoever…I’m just sayin’.
The watch-keepers from 2200 to 0500 saw lots of lightning to the south, probably 50-60 miles distant. Very active and fascinating to watch, it’s something none of us want to see approach too closely. We did not observe any wind or seas effects of whatever weather was happening ‘over there’.
Our pentazoid formation continues to appear on the radar and AIS as a living creature, amoeba-like in its slowly changing shape.
Seas remain benign. Yesterday’s low swell is a bit lower, yet. Wind is light, creating minimal chop on the softly undulating ocean surface. It’s mostly cloudy and we’ve seen rain squalls on the long-range radar, but nothing visually.
Eye of amberjack, peel of avocado, the curse of KVH is upon us, again, roiling the pagan god of satellite data. No up-link, no love. We’re dead in the ether, again. And I don’t think there’s any hope for a remote fix prior to arrival in Horta. Hence, the delay in blog postings.
On night watch
I’m the watch from 2100 to midnight, tonight. It’s dark. The wind has come up some, but it’s still mostly behind us, quartering on the starboard side. That makes us dip, then rise with a lateral motion, that seems more to the right. It’s not uncomfortable, but it’s significant enough to foil walking balance. It’s best to have a steadying hand on something.
One auxiliary weather forecast says there’s more wind on the way. The official weather-router forecast, tomorrow, will determine if we need to alter our course.
Moxie and all the other boats of the fleet are highly sophisticated, technical marvels. There’s state-of-the-art this and that: chartplotters with multiple overlays, easy switching on multiple screens, radar, AIS, autopilot, engine data recorders and many redundant systems (though not for satellite comm!). On each boat there’s probably more computing power than many small businesses. But there can be a downside to all this computational glory.
We’ve been in a counter current most of the day. Instead of 7+ knots, were making about 15% less, around 6 kts. The chart plotter has a sidebar for computed information, in addition to the display that shows the electronic chart and each boat’s position (displayed as a small boat icon). This sidebar can show many,many things relating to position and course. Bob has it set up to include ‘distance to arrival’ and ‘time to arrival’ (Horta), among others…but both of these are in a large format, prominently displayed at the top. Yesterday, when we were doing 7+ kts., the ‘time to’ read 10 days, 13 hours. Right now, it reads 11 days, 5 hours. It’s gone backwards all day, as the current impedes our progress.
It’s frustrating, if you pay it any attention. Emotionally, it’s screaming, “We’re going backwards!” Jason is particularly susceptible to its discordant siren song, as his schedule is so tight that any delay means he will have to leave us at Horta.