Sat phone session with Fedor

10 February 2008

Greetings from 55 South! All is well on board good ship Trading Network Alye Parusa. We are 80 miles west from MacquarieIsland and need to dive another 40 miles south to clear this Island. I am aiming to the way point 56 South and 160 East.

Again all day rain, sleet and drizzles. Poor visibility, I recon 300 meters. We are on the limit of the sub zero temperature. It is impossible to touch winch handle with bare hand, all ropes are wet and frosty. Early morning I had icy deck. Before I go on deck – I gear up like a gladiator with full set of offshore weather gear, boots, big gloves, hat and harness. All warm cloth from the bag is now on me. Today I even use dry suit from Survival grab bag when worked on the bow. Every morning I am checking pins and locking nuts for the stay sail and jib on the bow. I attach my self to the jack stay and walk on the bow. While I was there huge wave lifted the stern high up and I looked at empty cock-pit 20 meters behind with no one there. Some unpleasant thoughts came into my mind and I rushed back.     

There is a chance to see ice bergs or smaller bergs if we would have better weather with several miles visibility. All I can do is – shut the doors for watertight bulkheads and have the pumps ready by every watertight compartment. Sailing like a submarine – all is locked and sealed. Radar is “On” but with this 5-7 meters waves it is hard to spot the berg.

We had a good wind during the day 35-40 knots, I had 2 reefs on the main and staysail on. It was nice and comfortable on the boat, I even had a chance to read a book and made some sketches in my album. Now (20:00Perth time) wind dropped below 20 knots and shifted to west (270). Massive swell and waves still pushing and rolling the boat. When we slide down the wave we have even less wind at the bottom. I wish we had stronger winds for longer. In fact 30 knots of downwind is excellent conditions for us. Forecast shows wind from 20 to 40 knots within 48 hours.

Forgot to tell: last night we had a clear sky for several hours and I have seen the Aurora australis (or southern polar lights). Despite the unstable winds we are OK. Good coffee from “Naked Bean” coffee shop keeps me awake and warm! (Coffee shop in Albany “Naked Bean” gave Fedor 30 packs for excellent coffee for the trip from 10 countries – Round the world collection”).


Forecast from Lee Bruce:

“Widespread 30+kt wind near Fedor.

Fedors wind has been slow to clock to NW and NNW.  The forecast still brings the wind to about 310-320T through 10/12Z, and then quickly backs it to W or WNW about the time Fedor nears Macquarie Island (so if he wants to leave that island to port, he should pad in some room to the south in case he gets forced north of east near the island). After 11/00Z, the wind should clock again to NW or NNW.

10/00Z: NW (300-320T) 30-40kt gust 45kt squalls

10/06-12: NW to WNW 25-30 gust 35 squalls

10/18: WNW 20-25

11/00: WNW 20 (S of 55S; 10kt at 54S)

11/06: NW 15-20

11/12: NNW 15-20

12/00: NNW 30-40kt

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