2017 Atlantic Crossing

Day 4 “Can this day get any better”

It started with a massive sleep, almost a whole five hours, which was much needed after yesterday’s adventures.  I got up shortly before noon, armed with sextant, watch notebook and pencil and I’m off out on the deck on my quest to establish our noon latitude.  I’m getting closer, within 18 miles of GPS today, but still not good enough, we’ll try again tomorrow. 

The ocean is big and blue and beautiful, the sun is shining and we are headed toward the tropics.

Our battery situation is still troubling me, perhaps we’re not charging often enough, perhaps there is something running and draining the power that we’ve overlooked.  I go through a charter company boat brief almost verbatim,  how often to charge batteries, what volts we should be seeing etc etc.    I learn that the boat had motor sailed from La Rochelle to Fuertaventura, so now we are sailing the power is dropping more quickly.   At this point I suspect the inverter has been on all the time, which is likely to be the cause of the drain.  We’ll keep monitoring it.

Meanwhile in the ship stores, the bananas are ripening up nicely and need using.  I have brought all we need to make banana bread, so this afternoon I do a spot of baking and the crew all wake to the lovely smell of cakey goodness.  Hey presto, I’m the most popular person on the boat.  Keeping the vultures off the stuff while it was cooling proved tricky!  

I’m also now taking sun sights in the afternoon to try and use sight reduction to ascertain a position line.  I seem to be able to collect the information I need from the sextant and use the sight reduction tables, but the logic of how the plotting sheets work is illuding me, the more I look, the more lines I draw and rub out and draw again the less it makes sense.  But I’ll keep trying, it will click eventually.  Until that happens the whole thing is driving me a little mad and without Google, Youtube or another human being to explain it to me it could be a very long learning process.

The day ends with dolphins at sunset and shepherds pie for tea! Things don’t get much better than this and there is still the midnight watch to look forward to.





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