I’m starting to see northern hemisphere stars low on the horizon – I can see Ursa Major tonight. At first I thought it was Ursa Minor, and I was seeing the pole star, I was so excited!! Until I realised that was impossible as I’m not yet past the equator. I felt a bit silly…
The pole star is almost directly over the north pole. This means that it is always due north in the sky, but that’s not the navigationally exciting bit.
If you measure the angle of polaris above the horizon at any time from anywhere in the northern hemisphere, this will be your latitude north.
e.g if polaris is 10 degrees above the horizon, then your latitude is 10 degrees north of the equator.
It’s actually not quite true, as polaris is about 1 degree out from the pole, so you have to make some minor corrections based on time and your longitude. But nonetheless, exciting stuff!!!
I picked up a steady easterly wind at around midnight last night, and steady it has remained.
If I were a purveyor of wind, I would put it in a bottle and purvey it!
Trade winds at last I think!
I suspect they’ll only get stronger as I move into the belt, and I’m a thousand miles from the equator, so I’m hopeful that I might do it in 8 days!
Otherwise, it was such an easy day today, no course changes, not a lot of cloud, so no worries about squalls, and a steady breeze on my beam.
I even ended up having a 2 hour snooze in the middle of the day.
Latitude: -14.789, Longitude: -131.936, Time: 05:30:12 31-05-2018 UTC