Day 93, Year 6 Passage to St. Helena, Day 8-Great Sailing
Date: Tuesday, January 25, 2011, 1430 UTC
Weather: Partly Sunny; Winds SSE 15
Temperature: Water 66 degrees F; Air 69 degrees F
Latitude: 25 50.842 S
Longitude: 002 47.783 E
Miles Traveled: 1077
Miles to Go: 767
Location: Passage from South Africa to St. Helena
Since sending yesterday’s log, we have had consistent winds from the SE blowing15 knots, plus or minus 5 knots now and again. The seas are just a little more than a meter, so we still roll a bit, but nothing like the last few days. The Maritime Mobile Net tells us that we should have this same weather until the weekend and then the wind will die completely. The Atlantic Ocean high that has been stationary far to our south finally moved and broke apart yesterday. Part of it went into the Indian Ocean and part of it doubled back into the Atlantic and is headed to Antarctica. But a new high will start moving across toward South Africa from South America in the next few days and take our wind away. If we actually get winds like today for the next three days, we’ll have less than 300 miles to go when the winds die. At that point if we have to motor assist, we will, as we can refuel in St. Helena.
Mark worked on the water maker today, but he still cannot get it going. He did a rebuild, but unfortunately didn’t have a complete rebuild kit, so some gaskets could not be replaced. He took out the membrane and put our old one in, but that didn’t work either, so he feels it has to be that there is not enough pressure to push the water through. We know the old membrane works because we loaned it to Far Niente in Madagascar and they were able to make water all the way to Richards Bay. Mark has already taken the pump out again and tomorrow he will once again take it apart and make sure everything looks right. If we can’t get it going, we are just going to have to be VERY conservative with our water use. We have been conservative on this trip knowing the water maker wasn’t working and we used a little less than half of one tank in a week. We have two tanks, so together they should get us through one month. But that’s not enough, so we are hoping that we can buy containers of water in St. Helena or buy containers and fill them. They have water there, but finding plastic water containers might be a bit of a stretch.