Around The World Voyage : Commentary : Leg 4

June 3, 2002

Distance made good last 24 hours- 165 miles
Average speed last 24 hours 6.9
1670 RPM
Fuel burned last 24 hours 65 gallons
Fuel remaining 240 by sight gauges
Range at current speed with remaining fuel using data from last 24 hours- 609 nm
Distance remaining to Acapulco 256 nm
Course 295m
ER temp 112 F
Outside air temp 82 F

We are now approaching the Mexican coast as the miles wind down on our distance to go to Acapulco. We are excited to be getting close and are anxious to arrive. It has been a rough passage and somehow fatiguing where as the passage from Barbados to Panama was refreshing. The weather can only be described as spooky. The sudden formation of large cells of wind and rain is unnerving. A cell has formed around the boat just as I have been writing this and there is pouring rain and lightning although the wind is only about 8 knots. We sense that we are in a tropical depression breeding ground and in fact Jim reported another warning to us (since cancelled) that there was suspicious activity about 400 miles from us.

We are spending quite a bit of time playing with the variables of fuel, speed and projected arrival time. I have made up an Excel spreadsheet where I can plug in various different speeds and fuel burn rates trying to find the earliest possible arrival time but keeping a safe reserve of fuel - especially with things so unsettled. The wild card is the current. As you can see from the report, we did pretty well during the last 24 hours and that is because we had the current with us for about 18 of those 24 hours. At the moment, the current has turned on us again, so we have lost about 1 knot of SOG. All else is well and there is nothing wrong with the boat. Sturdy NORDHAVN is proving that she is stronger than her crew.

By the way, I have been reading the DDDB (Drag Device Data Base) manual by Victor Shane, which gives instruction on deployment of the Para Tech sea anchor, and drogue, which we have on board. It is a fascinating and informative book with many case study examples. Victor’s writings are right on the mark for the way it really is and I especially enjoyed his deep digression into philosophy.


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