Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Mexico to Seattle - Day Nine

Present location 27 deg 41.0 min north 114 deg 53.4 min west, also known as Turtle Bay.  We arrived at 0430 and fell into the rack.  Some details about yesterday and the night before.  After our discouraging tack on Sunday night we tacked back around midnight.  Just before midnight we got good news, "Psyche" was under power crossing our bow.  Her fuel problem was initially thought to be bad fuel, but turned out to be loose fittings which allowed air into the systems.  We had a very discouraging tack back out; could not find a satisfactory sailing or motoring direction; the boat just was not cooperating.  Our conclusion is that there are some really challenging currents in that area.  Once free, we established a regular tacking pattern.  The winds increased as did the seas.  We worked with sail combinations.  Monday morning, we dropped the staysail and sailed with the Yankee - sloop rig.  For these conditions, it was very efficient: it eased the motion of the boat and maintained the speed but did not keep us off our ear.  Twenty-four hours sailing with the boat at 20 degrees and more makes every move a challenge.  Little tasks become big.  Just putting on your clothes requires extensive planning and constant effort.  As we got closer to our destination we reduced the time between tacks to about two to three hours.  It required all of us to execute them properly.  So those off watch trying to sleep were awakened frequently.  Now we are in Turtle Bay, the boat requires no special handling and we are level.  Small things make us so happy.  Unfortunately, the weather outlook is lousy.  Today and tomorrow there are some bright spots, but after that we would absolutely have to pull in and hunker down.  Here we are protected and have limited services and have lots of cruiser company.  We will continue to monitor, but right now it seems that we are at least ten days from San Diego.  That will push back San Francisco to about June 13th.  Will close for now.  We have lots of maintenance projects.

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