Day 23

14 January 2014

“Last night by far was the best night that I have had since the start. The waves are smooth and long. The ocean is kind to me, raising the boat up and bringing it down, while at the same time nudging it along the course. The wind is stable, 15 knots with the occasional gusts of 20 knots.

There is no doubt that by now I’m far away from the coast. Here, in the 17° S and 89° W, I’m fully experiencing a powerful system of the Southeast Trade Winds that carry enormous air masses across the ocean. So far the conditions are great for rowing. In the morning I was caught in a squall with some charges of rain. I collected some of the rain water, not for drinking- it’s too salty- but for washing my hair. I spotted dark clouds in the horizon early and was ready for this small ambush. My eyes are always fixed on two elements: the ocean and the sky. Any changes here attract my attention immediately. There is no distraction when I am looking around: no ships of any kind and I have yet to meet any ocean life. Only an uninterrupted line of the horizon separates the ocean with heavens.

Today I had passed the traverse of a sea town Ilo, Peru. Ilo was our plan B in case I couldn’t get authorization from the Chilean governmental agencies to leave Concon. In June of 2000, Jim Shekhdar (UK) started from Ilo. He spent 274 days rowing across the Pacific and arrived to North Stradbroke Island which is near Brisbane, Australia. Jim left South America in the winter, and I did it in the summer. Right now it’s hard to say whose choice is better, but I know that I’m having more favorable weather in these latitudes than he experienced. The fact remains, though: he finished his transpacific rowing safely in Australia and I’m months away from the continent. The difficult times will arrive that’s for sure. West of Tahiti the tropical storms and cyclones rage anytime between November and April. That worries me quite a bit. I hope that Tourgoyak and I will be able to squeeze by without any major encounters with the local storms.”

An Interactive program Earth Wind

The map of the Tourgoyak’s course:

The detailed map of the course:

Translated by Tatiana Koreski

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