Monday, February 13, 2012


Noon Position: 56 09' S, 70 24' W, SOG 5, COG 075, Day's Run 138nm.
I'm coming out the backside of this depression now - it blew fairly hard
last night, probably topping out around 45 (at least that's what the
forecast called for), but wasn't as strong as the gale that knocked me
down. I know that I could get more mileage out of this weather,
especially now that it's improving as the depression passes, but it's
very hard to push the boat when it's so cold. I'm currently wearing,
from bottom to top, 2 pairs of wool socks, 2 pairs wool long underwear
pants, 1 pair fleece pants, 2 pairs wool long underwear tops, 1 fleece
vest, 2 fleece sweaters, and my foul weather pants on top, and I'm
comfortable to a bit warm during the day. When I was planning this
trip, I didn't really appreciate the temperature - thank goodness my mom
decided to mother me on the point of bringing enough warm clothes. If I
had heat on board I'd be fine with a lot less, just for going on deck
when you're active enough to stay warm, but with no chance to ever warm
up, every bit of clothing helps. At night the temperature drops
painfully - It's all I can do to sleep curled up in my blanket cocoon,
so it's really hard to convince myself it's worth carrying more sail,
when if a squall rolls through I'll have to go up in the freezing cold
and take it in... So I sail a little slowly. It seems every time I try
to put up more sail the wind builds in response - yesterday and today I
went to full jib after the wind dropped, only to have the wind suddenly
pick back up to 30-35 knots again, leaving me surfing a zig-zag course
down the front of waves as the windvane struggled to keep the boat in
control. So I sail a little slowly. I hadn't fully appreciated how
hard it blows down here - Between LA and Valparaiso, the least sail I
ever carried was a triple reefed main (bigger than what I have now) and
my big staysail, and even then was underpowered. Here, I haven't had
the main up for 2 days, and consider it light air when I can carry the
triple reefed main with the storm jib.


  1. Under those conditions sailing a bit slow sounds like a good plan to me, Eric. Stay safe, man. And stay warm! I'm thinking warm thoughts for you. But I'm also thinking a nice, cold beer for you when you hit port again.

    Well, okay. A nice cool beer, maybe.

  2. Eric - Godspeed to warmer waters. Hanging on your every post.
    You and I may be the only ones of our family who have been to the southern tip of South America. I visited Punta Arenas in 1980 (yes - you were not around yet) to make a sales call on a Lowrey dealer there. Flew from Santiago over the route you just sailed. Your Cousin - Randy Loss

  3. So exciting! Stay safe, and warm as possible.