Position, 58.10.1N 35,37.2W wind 25 kt, gusting 35 kt, sea moderate to rough, blue sky and birds. temp 17.7c, water 8.1c, SOG 8.5 kt, CSE 113T, DTW (Bantry Bay) 952 nm BARO 974 rising. 5 Oct 11.30 UTC
We have progressed through our second ‘low’ without mishap, in fact we managed to stay in a small area around 60 miles wide of relatively light winds showing green and blue on the Gribb file. Green is good, Blue is Paradise, Dark Magenta is something I would rather not experience, thanks. In our patch of tranquility, for which I will take full but undue credit for maneuvering us into, we could feel the swell and waves generated by the gale force winds (showing 63 KT gusts on the weather map – tinge of Magenta..) around us to the north and west. Now after 48 hours of tumbling around and hanging on, I reckon we are through the most difficult part. After a weather analysis this morning it looks very good for our run to Bantry Bay, and a Guinness, staying in a southern sector of a low in our way which should give us following winds, it makes all the difference. Crew and boat are well. Everyone is sporting a Shackleton/Mawson style beard depending on your personal hero, and we are all looking distinctly British and (Kiwi) ‘Salty Sea Dog’. Ben included, Zorro style whisps on the chin, a good effort at 14, going on 15.
The scene from my dark bunk one eye open to feign sleep, around 3 AM yesterday: Retching, twice, followed by a final sustained, retch in a much higher pitch, and then toilet pumping like billy-oh..someone peers into my cabin, unidentified, just making sure I’m still on board i would think, satisfied I’m actually there, he disappears forward, it remains a mystery who it was. WHUMP! a hard hitting wall of a water knocks us firmly sideways, then the vertigo of 26 tons shifting sideways and downwards about 30 feet, roll and recovery and water washing everywhere decks, widows, cockpit, someone has a fire hose spraying on us, a few clangs and clatters as she comes up, settles and powers ahead after a serious knock. I get up slide the hatch and see a dripping helmsman, water inches deep at his feet, wet streams from his peak and face is soaking, and get a solid thumbs up, you ok? i shout.. another thumbs up, shake my head, we laugh together, and I’m back below. You could easily believe there was a gang of burly angry construction workers with sledges and picks bashing on the hull trying to get in at us. Noise and motion, for 16 hours.
Dawn breaks, some blue patches, and birds everywhere, the sea uniform grey, although she still looks a bit angry with the odd hill-size roller lurking around. A brew is on, Mcvitties Chocolate Digestives, life sustaining, are ready, and the day begins. 5 days to Bantry Bay and under us, around 2 miles down is the bottom. I won’t go into what may be down there!