We burst into blue skies and sun laden seas in the late morning. All the pretty white horses, running on the wave tops, shook their flowing manes, glorying in the reflected sparkles.
After 10 sunless days, a bit like these faded memories of bedsheets, baths and dry towels, I was beginning to question whether it really existed. Maybe I’d just constructed the memory to maintain morale. I always thought the narrative of C.S Lewis’s The Silver Chair, where, while in the underworld they were momentarily convinced that the sun was foolish and a made-up fairy tale, was a bit unlikely. But now I’m convinced.
Not wanting to be undone by the sun, the wind put on a bit of a show today as well. Mostly sitting somewhere between fifteen and twenty knots, we were graced with quite a few periods of gusts up into the mid-twenties.
Of course the waves decided to come to the party. Overlaying a fairly reasonable two or three metre seas was a cross swell from the north west. I’ve not seen waves this steep and breakersome since the roaring forties. An average height of four meters, but I saw quite a few five and six metre waves as well.
As they were broadside, poor Perpetual Succour got dumped a few times when we would arrive at the crest of a breaking wave at an inopportune moment.
In the midst of all this however, the wind came around a little as expected, and by lunchtime I was able to pull her off the wind a little and still maintain a course of 70 degrees. Los Angeles is at a bearing of around 58 degrees, but I was more than happy to get a little more speed and a little less heel in those waves.
For the first time in 16 days, we weren’t sailing fully close-hauled!!!
It’s been a hard grind sailing so close to the wind, and I hope I never have to sail into trade winds ever again!
Naturally I was down to two reefs, in fact I’ve been sitting at two reefs for the last 48 hours, but I still made excellent progress with another run of 120 miles. It just goes to show – it’s not the size of your sails that matters, but how you use them.
I listened to various American artists today. Janis Joplin, Billy Joel, and Leonard Cohen to mention a few. It’s strange how many songs mention US cities. Suddenly all the names are real and I have to pinch myself that I’m nearly on these shores. The abstract becomes tangible. If they’re all worth making a song and dance about, then they must be worth seeing as well!
I’m exactly 400 miles from Long Beach and closing fast. I might get light winds on Sunday, but I’m hopeful I can put in 130 mile runs for Friday and Saturday. I haven’t seen the latest forecast yet, but the previous forecast predicted more of fifteen to twenty knots winds, but swinging around to the north west, which means they’ll be on my beam.
Latitude: 30.083, Longitude: -124.663, Time: 05:49:44 29-06-2018 UTC