Day 117, Year 6 Atlantic Passage, Day 14-Into the NE Trade Winds
Date: Friday, February 18, 2011 (1730 UTC)
Weather: Partly Cloudy; NE 9-12
Air Temperature: 81 degrees F
Latitude: 02 04.004 N
Longitude: 027 41.963 W
Miles Traveled: 1760.34
Miles to Go: 2125
Location: Passage from St. Helena to Caribbean (Grenada)

We have left the ITCZ behind and have entered the NE trades.. During the night the winds switched from NW to NE but were only 5-7 knots, so we kept motoring. The rain stopped just about the time we sent yesterday’s log, so it was a calm, dry night. The skies were still overcast, however, so there were no stars. But the light of the moon found its way through the clouds to guide us through the night. When I went down for my morning ‘sleep’ at 10 am, nothing had changed. I no sooner settled in when I heard Mark turn off the engine. When I got up at noon, the sun was shining and we were sailing along at 6 knots in NE winds of 10-12 just behind the beam. We now have all three sails out and are able to go 6.5 knots. The ITCZ was not as wide as reported or we were in it before the winds turned to the NW. If the GRIBS are correct, we will get stronger winds ahead and will have to reef down, but for now the sailing is fantastic. It always amazes me how much difference a day can make in sea conditions.

Today was a busy one doing laundry and baking bread. The bread is in the oven right now so I think we’ll have breakfast for dinner tonight-bacon, eggs, and fresh bread. Can’t wait!