Whale on a Lovely Day

December 31, 2018

Day 87

Noon Position: 46 19S  24 08E

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

Wind(t/tws): WNW 15 – 19

Sea(t/ft): NW 6

Sky: Low cumulus, solid mostly

10ths Cloud Cover: 10

Bar(mb): 1012, falling slowly

Cabin Temp(f): 57

Water Temp(f): 44

Relative Humidity(%): 63

Sail: Twins poled out full

Noon-to-Noon Miles Made Good (nm): 157

Miles since departure: 11,858

Avg. Miles/Day: 136

Days since Cape Horn: 30

Miles since Cape Horn: 4,213

Avg. Miles/Day:  140

Rode the twin, poled-out headsails all night and until late afternoon when wind went into the north and began to build. A low moves through tonight and tomorrow.

On deck mid morning I turned and saw a large patch of brown on the water less than a boat length to port. It glistened and gave the impression of immense muscularity. Visible above the water was the length of its body from its dorsal fin to its blow hole, but that section was moving quickly and away from Mo. Clearly, the whale had just spied us and was polite enough to give way; in fact, it seemed eager to do so. The visible parts of the whale appeared to be as long as Mo, and the fin I saw as the whale turned on a wave, was large and swept back in a crescent shape, a diagnostic feature of the Fin Whale. All over in an instant. I watched for ten minutes. Only one faint blow far astern after the initial sighting.

Today has been a lovely sailing day. By 10am it was clear and I set out wet things to dry (again–different wet things) and shot the sun three times for a running fix. In the afternoon I puttered at odd jobs, like tightening the fasteners on the port genoa car, which were working loose.

I’ve added a few more statistics above, miles and days since Cape Horn and our average miles per day in that time. We’re faster in the south than we were getting here. And recently that’s almost all easting!

5 Comments on “Whale on a Lovely Day

  1. Swept back hooked fin is characteristic of the Blue Whale also. Just saw a blue a month ago between San Diego and Ensenada. Huge.

  2. Thanks for the continual posts. I see your thoughts are how many miles in the past. Does that get you to think about how many to go or just grateful for those completed? Stay focused

  3. I’ve discovered a great way to see your voyage route in total. I’m plotting your position every 5 days on Google Earth then saving the line between them so I have a visible, red route line from SFO, around Cape Horn, now beginning to round Antarctica. I can pull out into space and ratate the earth and see your whole route so far. It’s quite impressive to have a complete visual of your voyage. What a remarkable trip! Be safe out there.

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