Odyssey Logs

Atlantic Odyssey II - Day 20 to 22: News from the fleet

Day 22 – Saturday 30 January 2016

Arrivals in Martinique

No boat expected today.

Fenicia

Position at 0930UTC 15deg 00min N, 54deg 00min W sailing along at 6kts in a ESE breeze.

We now have less than 400nm to go which, according to our reckoning, currently gives us an ETA in Martinique of Tue am, 2 Feb. If the wind fails us now, we have sufficient fuel left on board to motor the remainder of the journey, but the weather forecast says there will be wind. Hurrah!

Thoughts are, of course, turning to Martinique – of long hot showers and of rooms that do not move constantly. Perhaps a cup of good French coffee and a croissant with jam … enough, it’s too much to think of right now!

Two days ago we caught a glimpse of something grey moving fast past us in the water and it turned out that we were being checked out by a couple of Fin whales. They came back for several passes, even raising their heads above water at one point, and also diving beneath the boat a couple of times. But we were staggered at their turn of speed, probably 3 times ours and we were touching 6 kts at the time.

Yesterday, during Simon’s first night watch, a light appeared 3 miles on our starboard bow which he confirmed by radar as a vessel travelling on a converging track at about our speed. As the overtaking vessel, we altered course to slide behind him then pass him on our port side, and then called him on VHF.

He was a British single-hander bound for St Lucia who had left the Canaries on 2 Jan and we were the first people he’d spoken to in 28 days. He asked us if we’d encountered stormy weather a few days out, which we confirmed, and he was intrigued to learn that Hurricane Alex had been responsible for giving him a tough time, and it had not featured in any weather forecast when he set off. Ho hum.

Libertad

Not going to be Monday, darn

Having much lighter winds which makes for a comfortable sail, but no way we will be arriving Monday. We still have a little less than 400 miles to go and our best days have been about 160 miles….not making that now in these winds. We are still sailing though. We had motored 100 hours on our first leg from Canaries to Cape Verde Islands. But we have only been turning on the engine when we need to charge up batteries (wind generator of course not producing much in these winds) – so we have sailed this whole leg from Cape Verde. Feels good.

Steve caught a fish today, too small so he released it, but still fun.

We are perking ourselves up by listening to music blasting away in the cockpit today. Dancing may come yet…..

All’s well aboard.

From Libertad’s blog

Balou

German

Wir dümpeln…..Was der Wind Anfang der Woche zuviel war, ist er jetzt zu wenig. Hätte man mir vor vier Tagen 10 Knoten Wind angeboten, hätte ich gesagt, nehm ich. Jetzt allerdings mit dem Ziel vor Augen nervt es, wenn es nicht mehr vorwärts geht. Oder zumindest nur im Schneckentempo.

Jetzt liegen wir in der Sonne und lesen viel ( ich bereits das 9. Buch). Ab und zu hänge ich die Angel raus, so wie heute früh. Noch während ich die Leine ausrauschen lasse, zuppelt es schon. Mit so viel Wucht, dass ich sie kaum zum Stoppen kriege. Langsam, je nach Zug an der Angelleine hole ich den Fisch ans Boot. Schon wieder ein riesiger Mahi Mahi. Diesmal haben wir auch echt Schwierigkeiten ihn ins Boot zu bekommen, aber wir schaffen es. Nach dem Zerlegen bleiben eine große Grillportion, eine Sushiportion und ein großes Stück Filet zum Beizen übrig. Bin mal gespannt ob das was wird. Vielleicht könnte meine Cousine mir mal via Braunschweig mitteilen, wie lange der Fisch in der Beize liegen muss?

Ansonsten kommen wir gemeinsam gestarteten Schiffe uns wieder näher. Die ersten können wir schon über die normale UKW Funke erreichen. Das hat auch was. Nur der Wind fehlt, alle wollen ankommen.

Noch 360 sm to go.

From Balou’s blog

Day 21 – Friday 29 January 2016

Arrivals in Martinique

Kandiba arrived in Le Marin today, followed by Bebe and Viva.
Read the news report: Group arrival in Martinique for the Amel yachts

KANDIBA 2nd boat to reach Martinique

Libertad

Lazy day today

No excitement to report except that we are sailing along comfortably today (after a rocky, low wind night) towards our destination. We did a little bit of laundry.

One thing that is noticeably different about this Atlantic crossing versus our Pacific crossing is that we often see other boats. We have seen cruise ships, freighters, and other sailboats – on average at least one every other day. Today there was a sailboat passing us (darn it) about two miles out on our port side. We hailed them on the radio and had a nice chat. It was Zensation from Belgium. They are not part of our rally but are headed to Martinique and we hope to meet up with them as well as the folks on Paddy Boy whom we have spoken to several times.

All’s well aboard.

From Libertad’s blog

Balou

German

Heute mal wieder nicht Neues. Wir segeln friedlich dahin und die Sonne scheint. Letzte Nacht hatten wir die ersten Squalls (Kleine Wetterzellen, die für ganz kurze Zeit viel Wind mit Winddrehern und meistens Regen bringen), die aber nicht so wild waren. Da wir nachts das Radar mitlaufen lassen, sehen wir sie auch rechtzeitig von hinten ankommen und können die Segelfläche verkleinern. Wir haben schon den ganzen Tag zwischen 15-20 Knoten Wind und nur noch wenig Welle. Also alles gut.

Gestern hatte ich noch ordentlich Fisch an der Angel, der Beste ist mir allerdings flöten gegangen mit samt Köder. Wir denken, dass es ein Thunfisch war. Relativ groß und silbrig glänzend in der Sonne, hat er sich ordentlich gegen die drohende Pfanne gewehrt. Einmal hoch aus dem Wasser gesprungen, ruckartige Bewegung nach rechts und links mit dem Kopf und schon war er weg. Sehr schade und blöd für ihn jetzt mit Köder rumzuschwimmen. Ein zweiter hat heute das Gleiche vorgeführt, hat sich aber wenigstens des Köders entledigt. Der wird weiterleben. An beiden Ködern war ein Doppelhaken, aus dem sie sich wohl ziemlich leicht befreien können, mit Drillingshaken habe ich noch keinen verloren.

Noch 488 Seemeilen to go..

From Balou’s blog

Day 20 – Thursday 28 January 2016

Arrivals in Martinique

Jacquelyn were the first to arrive in Martinique, at 0945 local time.
Read the news report: Jacquelyn: first Atlantic Odyssey II boat to arrive in Martinique

Fenicia

Position at 1100UTC 15deg 34min N, 49deg 56min W.

Those of us towards the back of the Odyssey fleet consider with a hint of envy those ahead of us who will by now be arriving in Martinique. No longer for them the rough confused seas, and floors and walls in their little worlds that move haphazardly at the direction of Lord Neptune.

But it is still an enormous privilege to be out here in the Atlantic Ocean, surrounded by nature in all it’s glory. Turtles on passage themselves sheltering under the clumps of Sargassum weed, dolphins, flying fish galore and two amazing storm petrels that seem to have accompanied us all the way from the African coast.

But we’re ticking off the milestones – less than a 1000 miles to go, another time zone passed and less than a week to go. And there is the smell of bacon and egg butties being prepared in the galley. All is well on planet Fenicia!

Amokura

As we are sailing across the Atlantic heading towards  Martinique, lines of Sargrass interrupt the  continue blue seas as we sail along. Still no other yachts in sight, we continue to contribute to the Net on HF Radio, reminding us that we aren’t alone.

We have been absorbed by the clear starry nights and the continual glow of the full moon it once was. Seas have been mixed and at times rough. We have managed to supplement our food supplies with 5 catches of fresh fish, 2 Dolphin fish, 2 small Tuna and a Wahoo. Other wildlife we have seen were several species of birds, and many flying fish, some coming to their last stop on the decks of Amokura.

We are now counting down as our destination of Martinique is approx 500nm, we estimate our arrival (weather permitting) will be midday Sunday 31st January. We are now all craving for the Rum Punch.

Signing Off
David Karen Peter and Paul

Libertad

Fresh Fish for Dinner!

Jim was determined to catch a fish today so he put out the lines and prepared to keep watch. 10 min later he had a Dorado/Mahi Mahi on the line! But it seemed a bit smallish so they tossed it back. A few hours later we had another hit on the line and it was a big one. We could see it surfing the waves behind us swimming to and fro trying to escape. Jim had his hands full for about 20 minutes fighting it. When we got it onboard we weighed it – 9.5 kilograms, 21 pounds! Plenty for at least 3 dinners for the three of us.

We had lighter winds today so we flew the spinnaker and had smaller seas so it was one of those days they talk about in the glossy brochures – a delightful day for all! Tonight we will have the fish and some home made oatmeal cookies cooked today to celebrate another good day at sea.

We talked to our friends Judy and Bill on Bebe this afternoon. They will be arriving Martinique tomorrow. We are a bit jealous, but we remind ourselves that we had a great time during our 2 day stop at the Cape Verde Islands so we can’t have any regrets. We are still hoping for Monday, but of course it depends on the winds.

All’s well aboard.

From Libertad’s blog

Balou

German

Sind es wirklich schon 20 Tage, seit wir die Canaren verlassen haben? Unglaublich. Trotz unseres zweitätigen Aufenthaltes in Mindelo haben wir wieder den Anschluss an die Truppe, die von Teneriffa gestartet ist gefunden. Somit sind wir wohl nicht so furchtbar langsam gewesen.

Die Seemeilen fangen an zu purzeln und wir beginnen uns darüber zu unterhalten, was wir so zuerst machen nach der Ankunft. Wahrscheinlich zuerst eine Runde schwimmen im warmen klaren Wasser.

Seit heute Früh lässt der Wind deutlich nach und das Segeln wird wieder angenehmer. Ich kann wieder draußen auf der Cockpitbank liegen, ohne gleich runter zu fallen. Somit kann ich dann jetzt auch mal die Kellerblässe der letzten Tage vertreiben sonst bin ich das Blasseste, was jemals die Karibik erreicht hat. Das Wasser ist inzwischen unglaublich blau.
Gerade eben ist die Angel ausgerauscht. Muss mich mal schnell um den Fisch kümmern.

From Balou’s blog


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