Saturday, March 2, 2019

We Bounded Along

16 18.1N 99 01.6 W
Enroute to Huatulco

The wind piped up as expected around noon today and we were soon bounding along.

But just beforehand, we hit the seaweed lottery. We were motoring along in light winds on the port engine. I was on watch and had scanned the sea ahead of us before attending to something inside and all looked. Several minutes later I heard a crunch and the engine faltered. I dashed out quickly to the helm and threw the engine into neutral. We had run over a patch of thick seaweed about three feet in diameter. Figure the odds of the one running propeller on a 20 foot wide catamaran hitting the only patch of seaweed for as far as the eye could see in any direction. It took a little while to clear the prop of weed, but no damage done and we were soon back on our way.

Today's sailing was marvelous. We romped along, the sail filled and pulling strong on the sheet. The sea was a sharp metallic blue color with small white caps that sparkled like diamonds. Nimble wind waves passed under and lifted the boat from behind, while more ponderous swells from abeam rocked us gently. The sky was an almost-white pale blue on the horizon, light blue overhead, the sun such a bright white you couldn't look at it for a second. Glorious!

I did yoga today on the forward deck under the blazing hot noon sun. It was a good workout and my neck feels much better. It's hard to get good exercise while making a passage, but a good series of yoga postures works every muscle in your body and feels great.

The ECMWF wind model and routing worked well for us today. Though I haven't done any formal verification, this model seems to be the most accurate of the ones available to us via PredictWind. I set a couple of "wind waypoints" on the chartplotter based on the wind model routing which took us a bit further offshore. We certainly weren't disappointed by the wind when we got there. But who knows, maybe the wind would have been the same had we followed our rhumb line. Can't be in two places at once fo know.

I've been catching up reading Economist magazines from the past few weeks, started reading H Is For Hawk (Helen MacDonald) and I'm on Day 33 of Sam Harris' "Waking Up" meditation course (highly recommended).

Life is good.