Backwards?

It’s my night watch, and until about an hour ago we were making about 1 kt. in 4-5 kts. of wind. Then I saw that our course readout was kerflooey. Get this. The boat is pointed on a course southwest, but our track shows us moving northeast at half a knot. We hit another adverse current. There’s nothing we can do about it, short of firing up an engine and burning more of our limited fuel. I’m going to sit tight and wait for change of watch in an hour and discuss with Jack what to do. In one hour we’re only losing a half mile of hard won territory and sleep is more important as long as the boat’s fine. Do you believe this passage? 

Looking ahead we have another few DAYS of calms, an area of hundreds of miles that we can’t possibly motor through. We can see that there’s wind enough to move us in the right direction 200 miles further south of us but we can’t get there. Our precious time in French Polynesia is ticking away while we wallow here in the doldrums. Later: When Jack came on watch he decided to motor. We dropped the mainsail, sheeted in the jib and fired up the engine. I went off watch and when I woke up six hours later we are still motoring, the wind and current haven’t improved and won’t for the next four days. We are stuck in the Twilight Zone. If we continue to motor we run the risk of running out of fuel. If we do’t motor, the current will sweep us back over the equator and northeast. Mood onboard is glum.

2 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized

2 Responses to Backwards?

  1. Anita

    Blow wind, blow. Saying lots of prayers for you. Love you.

  2. a lesson for other travelers — take another look at the light weather top down furling reaching sails – 4-5 knots from aft of the beam should generate more motion in the desired direction – clean the bottom – line up the props if you can – reach off instead of straight down wind – ?
    hope you have plenty of food and water

Leave a Reply to Anita Cancel reply