Hi, Everyone. It's Kris again. I have gotten a few sailmails from S & D that I will post below. I expect to get more during the 10-or-so day crossing, and I will add them here.
PHEW!!! While you are frolicking on the land with all our beloved friends, here we are, once again, getting used to the motion of the ocean and the last 24 hours have been pretty much like a washing machine out here, although the wind and most of the waves are actually pushing us toward our destination of Fiji. Luckily most of the winds have been generally from 15-21 kts, with occasional squawls and gusts from 20 to 30. We did freak out last night when David woke me up with 30kt winds and the wind monitor just couldn't handle it. Thank goodness I was able to take us off the monitor and the helm actually was not too difficult to steer. We rolled in the partial headsail and it settled down, but it is those times which we certainly haven't missed for 6mos and they do wake you up! We are getting ready for the next afternoon and evening and have decided to just sail with the main again, with the wind pretty much behind us and still going around 6kts. All the boats we left with have scattered out and are no longer visible but we are still in VHF range today and are doing a SSB net each evening at 5PM. It is comforting to know they are with us on this journey. We have to take at least 10 days to get to Savusavu cause they charge way extra for weekends so that is why we were contemplating Minerva Reef for a day, but we shall see; it all depends upon where we are after 4 more days. I just got off watch, am a bit chilly, and am ready to sleep for a couple of hours before the next session. You are dancing and partying, getting ready for the real festivities tomorrow. Happy Wedding to Daniel and Lauren! We love you all. Suzi and David
Kris - Our new GPS coordinates are = 30 36.97 S 175 53.79 E The wind has dropped off and we are cruising along at 4.5-5 knts. But it's starting to warm up a bit and none to soon for our liking. The sun was out for most the day and the only major squall we saw zipped past without hitting us. Always a blessing!!!! Will be in touch- David
When it rains it pours and when it doesn't it is dry as a bone !! We are in the middle of one of the worst oceans in the world when it comes to weather and we are motoring ~!! I'm not complaining, better this than getting our butt's kicked with 35 knt + but what's wrong with 15-20 40 degrees off our course ? Yeah, someday but not today. Our position is 20 42S 177 02E and the sun is out (most the time). Suzi is asleep in the cockpit and I'm running the watermaker for the first time in 8 months. Everything is A OK (keeping my fingers crossed) and we are almost halfway to Mirnerva Reef with a favorable weather forecast for a few days to come. Sure wish we were able to attend Dan's wedding, that cowboy shit is right up our alley. See ya, David
The seas are beautifully blue and relatively calm, as we motor across this area of light wind, a concept hard to believe way out here with ocean all around, and the time without wind issues also gives us a chance to settle into being secure on Sidewinder, once again. Both David and I are so delighted to be able to read books and take off each layer of clothing that we have been wearing for weeks. Capt Dave just put on shorts for the first time in so long ....WAHOO! We put the spinnaker pole up with the headsail and tried to sail last night, but there just wasn't enough to keep the sail from flopping. Hopefully today, as predicted, the SE winds will begin to appear. We are headed to Minerva Reef right now, since we can motor in any direction, and will join ACappella there for a day or two, before heading into Savusavu. The reef offers a place to swim in the warm water and slows us down so we don't arrive until after the weekend. We are about two days away from Minerva. Once we get to Savusavu, it will be days before we can dive in the warm clear water, so I think it is a great idea, as long as the weather holds up. Right now the winds are high in the Lau Group area, the Koro Sea, and we hope they will lay down in the next week. Sunrise was spectacular this morning and it is another warm sunshine day with puffy clouds in the distance. -Suzi
We are at 26° 12'S 179° 09'E The wind has picked up a bit (15 kts. +-) and it's been a pleasant sail but at this rate we will be getting to Minerva Reef after dark which isn't advisable. Soooooo, we have to make a decision as to speeding up (motoring, bummer), hanging outside until light, or going in at night. We have great info. for the place with lots of GPS waypoints and have friends who are there right now to help guide us in, but night entrances are always sketchy at best. We'll let you know our how it goes. Will talk more later- David & The Admiral
Well we are here in Minerva Reef but only by the whiskers on our chinny chin chin. Sidewinder was going through the pass as the sun was setting behind us and by the time we got to the other side of the lagoon where everyone (18 other boats) was anchored it was dark. It's always fun trying to figure out where to anchor, where the reef starts, how deep is it, which way is the wind going to swing you, and all of this while not seeing much of anything. But we got it done and after a closer inspection this morning we did a bang up job. Not sure how much exploring around we will be doing as the wind is blowing about 25 out there and I'm feeling rather comfy just sitting here, drinking a cup of coffee and not having to brace myself every time I want to walk somewhere. All is good and you will probably hear again from Suzi later on. She is still in bed digging on the peace and quiet. I think you know where Minerva is but if not= 23 38.5 S 178 54.5 W We might be here for a few days as there is lots of wind coming our way and may be better to sit it out right here instead of getting beat up out at sea. We'll see ????? See ya. David