Sunday, April 19, 2009

The North East Trades

Latest Position: 04/19/09 0151Z 3 10.278N 35 53.265W

I've been making great progress with the 15-20 knot trade winds even though its been a bit of a bash with the wind and swells coming on the forward starboard quarter. Still doing over 140 mile days and loving it. I seem to be out of the squally area that normally spreads several degrees north and south of the equator. I guess it really fluctuates and doesn't always follow the norm. It has been nice to not have to reef in the middle of the night for random squalls.

It has been really grey. The sky is grey and the water is grey and it is really dramatic to look at.

The forecast shows that the trade winds should hold steady all of this week so I should be able to do about 1000 nautical miles a week with the wind I've got. I should be in in a little under 2 weeks.

The wind is building a bit here and I'm going to put another reed in before I hit it.


PS To the Baker Girls: I have not seen the so called green flash except for one time at St Helena. I have been looking for it and have heard that it has something to do with rods and cones and color saturation in the bakc of the eye?? What I did see was nothing to write home about anyway.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Keep up the great progress. We will keep praying.

April 19, 2009 at 7:34 PM  
Blogger Becky said...


It's great to hear that you are moving along again. This is a really long leg. I hope your drinking water isn't too funky. How are the food supplies holding up?

I hope the wisdom teeth are O.K. You haven't mentioned them lately, so I hope they have settled down.

I think 140 miles a day is pretty fair for the Intrepid!


April 19, 2009 at 9:32 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Cool traveling....making fabulous progress.Well done are doing a wonderful job...glad that things are going well for you.
Grenada is nearly on the horizon!
UK friend

April 20, 2009 at 1:19 AM  
Blogger Anita said...

Making good time Zac!
Hang in there, be safe and have fun!
Waterloo, NY
Captain SV Wombat

April 20, 2009 at 1:50 AM  
Anonymous Axel said...

@ all the Google Earth navigators:
If you put New Orleans in the center of your screen and ad todays position of Zac you can see him coming over the horizon in the lower right corner (SE) He is almost home :-)

April 20, 2009 at 5:40 AM  
Blogger Douglas Pistone said...

It's great to hear your sailing along just fine. With 15-20 knots of wind you'll make great progress. Let's hope the wind continues and you miss all those heavy squalls.

This long leg sounds better every time I read your detailed descriptions. Keep it up, you're doing a great job.

Sail On,
Douglas Pistone
MDR, California

April 20, 2009 at 6:40 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I just love following you Zach, I dream about being on a sailboat. But I don't swim and I have never been on a boat other than a ferry!
So I admire what you are doing.

April 20, 2009 at 9:17 AM  
Blogger Allyson Janell said...

I found your blog link on the the Rebelution blog and what you are doing is really awesome!! You are an inspiration to me to do hard things!! Great job! Good Luck and safe travels, Zac!

April 20, 2009 at 9:51 AM  
Anonymous Your Oklahoma Well-Wisher said...

Hurray for the tradewinds and making good time! Love your description of the dramatic gray skies and seas...
Peace, Your Oklahoma Well-Wisher

April 20, 2009 at 9:59 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


I noticed that you were fairly close to the Volvo Ocean fleet last Friday at the Equator on their way up to Boston. Were you able to pick up any radio from them or yell out Starboard!!! as they were to your leeward? Also, did you pass by the Saint Peter and Saint Paul Rocks just over the Equator? Keep up the great sailing.


April 20, 2009 at 11:12 AM  
Anonymous Scott Kuhner said...

Zac, When we made he passage from Fernando De Noronha on our 30 foot ketch back in 1974, we stayed about 100 miles off the north coast of Brazil and picked up a 2 to 2.5 kt current in our favor. At about 250 miles off shore the current drops to less than 1 kt and varries. Good luck on this last leg to the Caribbean.

April 20, 2009 at 11:32 AM  
Anonymous Bill Jamison said...

It's really amazing to me to think of doing a single leg of over 4,000 miles! Or to put it another way, it's like going from LA to Charlotte NC and back again. To be all alone on the ocean for that long is a true testament to your skills and maturity.

I hope the trade winds remain steady the rest of this leg so you're in Grenada soon.

April 20, 2009 at 1:32 PM  
Blogger Sherna Taylor said...

Glad that you are making steady progress. Pray that wind will continue as you head to Grenada.

Hope you make it in time for the Drum Festival May 01- May 02 where u will get to experience the Food and culture of the Caribbean


sent you email

April 20, 2009 at 1:47 PM  
Blogger Bob said...

Hi There Zac...

Great Sailing and excellent post!! Your positive attitude is shining though and is very encouraging to us all. We are continuing to pray for your safety and good health and also for the favorable winds. Enjoy these days!
Bob in OKC

April 20, 2009 at 2:46 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey, I haven't been able to read your blog for a long time because I've been busy, but I'm glad to hear that you're doing okay. Continually praying for your safety as you get closer to home.

Elissa Walther
Houston, TX

April 20, 2009 at 3:03 PM  
Blogger Lamb Family said...

Is that a 24-hour day? (going 140 miles)

When we lived on our boat we used to go at most 50 miles a day (12 hours) but our boat was a really slow Lagoon 380 catameran.

Keep it up!

April 20, 2009 at 8:06 PM  
Anonymous JiffyLube said...

I don't know if this question was asked, but here it goes. Can you reef the main sail from the cockpit or do you have to go on deck? Is your furling jib a roller reefer?

April 20, 2009 at 9:40 PM  
Blogger bakergirls said...

It must be kind of exciting being on the last part of your journey. You've experienced so much but, it must be good to feel the end in site.
Keep up the good work! We've sure loved your adventure.
The Baker's

April 21, 2009 at 4:34 PM  

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