Today, it is Tuesday the 16th of August and my fever is gone, thanks to my wonderful wife Sabine, who is also an excellent nurse. At the moment we are just entering Union Strait N69.30/W119.27. We have light winds at the moment, but up to 30kn forecasted later on, so we hesitated to put up our genaker.
Last night we took our “ice-breaker” off the bow, because one of the strings failed. This, under sail and with a fever is no fun. We stored our self-made, bulky ice-collision-protection-device in the cockpit.
So now there is barely a square feet of open space left on the boat. At precisely this point we got a message from sailboat Nomad, who are transiting the NWP in the opposite direction from East to West. We met them in 2005 in Tahiti and they heard that we are coming their way. Probably they remembered that we clean-up wherever we go, so they told us that they left us a box of beers, a gas tank, empty plastic bottles and beer bottles all from Greenland in a black trash bag labeled “for Pachamama”. With 10 people on board, you need a lot of space and Pachamama is pretty full right now. We might get US 50.- deposit money back, if we return all the bottles, box and tank. Bit we probably need to use our dinghy to tow all that approximately 2000 miles to return it to the right shop in Greenland…
Today I will work again on the autopilot. The boys will give me a hand. Here a description of the problem: All systems have power and seem to work fine, but when you press AUTO the pilot pushes the rudder instantly hardover to one side. It does not hold the heading. Solenoid has the right voltage +/-24V and the resistance is 32 Ohm. I cleaned the electric motor from carbon dust and it is working fine after it caused us some trouble. Before Dutch Harbor a 5 Amp fuse went hops and when
replaced the fuse always stopped running after some hours. I thought it is a connection failure in the cabling, but I am sure after seeing the dust in the housing that the dust in the housing caused the troubles. Anyway, the brushes will have to be replaced in the future. And to be fair, our autopilot has been dependable for many, many years.
Salina and Andri became navigators, so they can assist, if it gets tough. We just got a message from Victor: “The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration said Thursday that it expects the 2016 Atlantic hurricane season to be the most active in four years, with a 70 percent chance of seeing 12-17 named storm and 5-8 full hurricanes……Brace yourselves ….” This means getting out of the Arctic in lower latitudes probably will be a bigger challenge than the NWP.
Today we will try to radio our friends on sailboat Maya. They are on the way to the Gambier Islands. We met them end of April in Mexico, since then we have covered more than 8000 nautical miles.