Report from Fedor

03 April 2008

Good morning, we are just before the sun rise. Right now I am experiencing north and periodically N-N-E winds that forces us to sail more southerly course. My paper chart is full of red marks; this is how I color the position of confirmed icebergs based on satellite tracking provided by C-CORE and Polar View. I am on red alert. Yes, it is stressful here when you aware of ice location. Fatigue and sleep deprivation is taking place. Sailing solo in the Southern Ocean has one advantage – very little ships traffic here and with 2 Active Echo units (one on the mast one at the stern) I can detect ship at 5-6 miles range and take actions. Of course if this ship operates radar. Basically in the Southern ocean you concentrate on sailing, wind shifts and waves direction which is easy to predict and work out. With the iceberg, especially bits less than 50 meters I don’t have any reliable tools on board. I can only run my radar but the sea state is confused, waves around 4-5 meters and frankly speaking – I do not get clear picture. This night was a good example: there were several objects on the screen that could be icebergs and I bared away from them not 100% sure what is was. It is “blind navigation” here and this is second time we are playing Russian roulette (last time it was in the Pacific where Fedor reported 6 icebergs within 24 hours). The satellite tracking suggested that icebergs gone further North to 44 South so basically there an icy fence from 44 to 54 South and I have to navigate through the gap.

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