Fedor Konyukhov

Sat phone session with Fedor

Last 24 hours were extreme in many ways. First we had up to 55 knots of head winds that pushed the boat down to 46 South. Seas build up significantly and my “dry boat” had plenty of water on deck and in the cockpit. I had to furl in staysail and brought the boat as close on the wind as possible, but still we were heading 135-140 COG which is towards the S-E, confirmed iceberg location. Late in the morning wind dropped from 50 to 10 knots and I thought I would get sea sick (although I never experienced sea sickness) – waves were chaotic, bumping and crushing on to the boat. I even said “Sorry” to my boat that ocean is crushing on her motionless hull and there is nothing I could do. I was wasting my time trying to put some sails up – big swell and wind waves with light winds – always bad combination, we were not moving. The top of the mast was flying from one side to another with 10 meters of amplitude.  I was like in Circus arena balancing on deck. Definitely last 24 hours was pure frustration in terms of boat progress. Have not crossed yet Greenwich Meridian! I thought I would be in Eastern Hemisphere 2 days ago, and again ocean brought some corrections into my schedule. I had enough of stress already, but at the end of this day, when I was standing in stbd steering cockpit, a massive Humpback whale came to the surface 15 meters away from me and discharged his oxygenless air with terrifying sound and splash. If that would be during the night – someone can get a heart attack.  I even could feel the smell of his breath.  We been beaten by 50+ knots head winds, wind waves, constant threat from icebergs and finally this giant mammal is rubbing shoulder alongside my boat. I had enough of events on deck, switch “On” the pilot and went below to put the kettle on. That is all, nothing major had happened. Forgot to mention about rain or drizzle with periods of heavy fog. Another glorious day in the Southern Ocean. Regards, Fedor