29 May Squeezed
All last night we sailed under clear, starlit skies squeezed north and south by lightning that lit both horizons as far as the eye could see. Nervous about careening into thunderstorms and showers, I stood watch most of the night ready to shorten sail if need be.
At 0300 it was clear the lightning to the north was getting too close for comfort. I put two reefs in the main and left the Solent full. Turns out it was unnecessary and my precautions cost us miles.
Tonight, more of the same. The convective bands that drive the formation of the storm cells are, however, well away from me so I just may throw caution to the winds. I am loathe to slow down as we are already badly underpowered with only the Solent to fly forward. Moreover, we should be seeing the last of the Northeast and East Northeast winds that have us close hauled and slamming into wind wave and chop. The wind is forecast to go East and then East Southeast starting later this evening. If it does, it will be a mercy I shall not soon forget as we’ve been at this windward bashing for far too long.
We are targeting a waypoint east of Penrhyn Atoll. It sounds simple and efficient this waypoint targeting thing doesn’t it? A smidge different in reality when it’s 600 or so miles upwind against the trades flirting with convective bands and the like the whole way.
Follow my tracks in real-time: