Welcome to the Antipodes

January 9, 2019

Day 97

Noon Position: 45 59S  60 30E

Course(t)/Speed(kts): ExS 7+

Wind(t/tws): NW 17 – 21

Sea(t/ft): NW 4

Sky: Overcast. Fog for several hours.

10ths Cloud Cover: 10

Bar(mb): 1008, falling slowly

Cabin Temp(f): 61

Water Temp(f): 48

Relative Humidity(%): 81

Sail: Working jib poled to port; main out to starboard; broad reach

Noon-to-Noon Miles Made Good (nm): 151

Miles since departure: 13,374

Avg. Miles/Day: 138

Days since Cape Horn: 40

Miles since Cape Horn: 5,730

Avg. Miles/Day: 143

Longitude Degrees Made Good (degrees minutes): 3 36

Longitude Miles Made Good (at Lat 46S): 150

Total Longitude Made Good Since Cape Horn (degrees minutes): 127 47

Slow night and too much northing. I left reefs in expecting wind to veer into the NW and strengthen after midnight. It did neither, and Mo worked up above 46S, which we didn’t need. Winds have come on fresh from the NW this afternoon, and so we’re slowly drifting back S a bit.

I could have risen and made sail changes but chose to sleep. Each time I rose to examine our course, it seemed the detour was minimal and easily corrected in daylight. This is a frequent strategy. I figure that on such a long haul, adding a few more miles for the privilege of being rested is a fair trade. My limit is usually plus or minus 30 degrees off intended course.

Assume I’m asleep for 8 hours and that during that time Mo is making 6 knots or 48 miles for the night. If my course is off by a flat 30 degrees all night (very rare), I will have sailed 6.43 miles more than necessary to get to the same longitude. I’ve cost myself an extra hour of sailing for a good night of sleep. I approve. (The math: 30COSx48-48.)

The day has been dominated by fog, thin enough vertically to allow in the sun, but thick enough horizontally to be thought of as heavy. Mo’s made a steady 7 knots since noon.

Yesterday at 7:30pm local (gmt+4), Mo crossed the antipodes and was for a brief moment on the exact opposite side of the world from home. This was longitude 58E. San Francisco is 122W. If I were simply doing an around the world, I’d be on the return run now, the downhill slide. Think on it–13,374 miles (today’s total) would be half instead of a third of our total anticipated Figure 8 distance, and I’d be back at the house by April.

Not the plan.

Bird counts have dropped off markedly since we left the Crozets behind. White chins sat on the water in small groups in the fog and scolded each other with their loud chit-chit-chit. But that was the extent of our entertainment until the repeated swoops of a light mantled albatross this afternoon.

3 Comments on “Welcome to the Antipodes

  1. Question: Having a centre boarder I’ve had many a discussion about whether or not a centreboarder is better off sailing in storm coditions as with the board up she has more of a tendency to slide down the wave rather than being tripped up by a deep keel? Your thoughts…

  2. Randall,

    Your voyage continues to inspire me! I was delighted to see you respond to my comment about trying to obtain footage of the large seas you are encountering along your journey. I imagine it would indeed be tough using a handheld iPhone. Imagining my own trip, I think a gimballed Go Pro mounted on the backstay would capture excellent footage. But what do I know? (Hint – absolutely nothing) lol!!!!

    Not sure if you know of him, but if not, I highly encourage upon your return after you settle in and reconnect with Jo, to read John Kretschmer’s “Sailing To the Edge of Time” which I completely inhaled on two flights, one to Mexico for vacation with my wife and the return trip today. As I write this I am in the Charlotte, NC airport awaiting my final flight home. Between the two of you, I have been sufficiently motivated to schedule a week long “Basic To Bareboating” sailing certification course in the Bahamas next month.(Feb) My wife has graciously agreed to go with me, an unexpected surprise!

    Continued success to you… thank you so much for allowing all of us to accompany you as virtual stowaways.

    May your journey continue to be blessed by fair winds and following seas!


    Steve Grant

  3. Fog here, fog on the opposite side of the world. Must be to keep things in balance. Loved the SF Giants shout-out from the other side. Keep up the Mo-mentum. We’re really enjoying following and every couple days Norah says “it’s time to update Randall on the map.”

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