I was pretty far from my original waypoint off Easter Island. I underestimated just how far west the SE trades were going to push me. I’m so glad to be out of those southeast headwinds! The good news is I’m still on schedule, and should be rounding the horn by mid-January (or earlier). The climate is changing in a hurry. The temperature has been down to the low 50s at night and I’ve been having days with that grey featureless sky and steady rain. I even had a bit of fog which I thought was pretty funny. After the Arctic, fog has become a joke. The water has also gotten cold. I regularly take saltwater showers. Well, I guess it’s a shower. I dump a couple of buckets of saltwater over my head, lather up with soap and shampoo, then dump a few more buckets on myself and call it a day. I did it a few days ago and was shocked by how quickly the water has changed temperature.
I’ve officially given up on fishing in the Pacific Ocean. I’ve lost too many lures to sharks. About a two weeks ago I watched a shark bite right threw my wire leader and run off with my lure. I’ve had several hard plastic lures get bit in half, other lures with hooks ripped off. I use 350lbs test and relatively small lures, so it takes a big fish to steal my lure but it’s happened so many times in the Pacific that I’ve decided to quit fishing until I get into the Atlantic. There are less sharks in the open Atlantic, the open Pacific seems to be full of Oceanic white tip sharks. At least I’ve run into a few of them. I don’t think about sharks very often, as long as I’m above the water line they don’t really matter. At this point sharks are the least of my concerns.
I still have plenty of shelf reliance freeze dried food. I’ve also gained back most of the weight I lost in the Arctic. Between a healthy diet, pulling on lines and pumping my water maker, I’m in great shape physically. Although between pumping my water maker and wrestling with my sails 24/7 my hands have become pretty chewed up. It hurts to make a fist. I’d say I’m doing pretty good considering I’ve been underway for 184 days strait. I have been craving chicken wings lately, or a fat slice of cheesecake, or a pint of Guinness. Ok I lied, several pints of Guinness. Anything unhealthy sounds awfully nice. Then again I never get tired of my shelf reliance food.
I crossed into the roaring forties with the winds blowing 30kts. I thought that was an appropriate introduction. I imagine I’ll see much stronger winds before I get to the horn. It’s hard to say what’s going to happen. It’s really up to Poseidon; all I can do is give it my best. Whatever happens, I doubt it’s going to be boring.