Back at Sea! :)

We're underway again!  We left the slip in Saint Thomas yesterday at 11:30am, motored around to the end of the island and then deployed our genoa and main in 11 knots of breeze almost directly on the beam (TWA), allowing us to sail in the 7.5 - 8.5 knot range.  The sea was almost flat making for some very enjoyable sailing!  A few hours later the predicted lightening of the wind occurred so we deployed our Code 0, a large furling headsail designed for reaching angles in lighter breeze.  This allowed us to sail through the night at speeds of 5 - 7 knots in breeze ranging from 6 - 8 knots.  For those non-sailors out there, these are pretty good speeds for a large boat like this in light air.  As I write this the sun just rose and the breeze is picking back up to the 10 - 12 knot range and we're back to hitting low 8's on the boatspeed gauge.  If the breeze continues to build, we may swap back to the genoa.  

Unlike the Atlantic crossing, when we took on two crew (five total onboard), this passage we've added only one, our new friend Tim.  As a result, we're sailing three hour watches at night (three on, six off) and during the day Seth will start taking one hour watches to relieve us.  Watchkeeping on ths ocean is a fairly relaxed job most of the time, but I've found it a bit more demanding this morning as the breeze pulses between 8 knots and 12 knots, requiring frequent course or sail adjustments to ensure that the Code 0 isn't overpowered and the helm stays somewhat balanced.  

We're going to break up our passage to Newport with a few day stopover in Bermuda, a beautiful island just over halfway to Newport.  We're expecting around 5 1/2 days to Bermuda (850 nm) and then another 4 1/2 days to Newport (635 nm).   An added bonus of the stopover will be that many of our European cruising friends will be there when we arrive, having stopped on their way back to Europe from the Caribbean.  

Our tracking is live on the map on this web site as well as at the PredictWind tracking site, which also provides weather information.  Check in on our progress, and leave us a comment below!

First Sunset at sea

First Sunrise