Trustmarque Quokka

As I sit at the chart table writing our second blog entry I can feel Quokka heeling to new breeze and hear the on deck team working hard to squeeze everything they can out of it. It’s still only 8 knots but this is the manna we have savoured at any given opportunity over what has been a largely windless 48 hours.

Setting out with a light forecast we did wonder what challenges would be presented when we hit negative current in the Messina Straits. However the wind our skipper ordered dutifully turned up and we had a fantastic spinnaker reach yesterday afternoon with just under 20 knots of southerly breeze helping us make short shift of the 2 knot current. Exiting the straits, we peeled to an A sail, hardened up to head for Stromboli and powering along at a steady 9 to 10 knots in glorious sunshine.

Our fun was short lived and soon the wind started to drop off as we hit our first wind hole. When the wind dropped off completely, we dropped the headsail and celebrated Barry’s 35th wedding anniversary with a cup of tea and a chocolate bar. Off watch yesterday evening I lost count if the number of sail changes I heard up on deck in response to the light and variable wind. At midnight I relieved Kylie trimming the A1 and eking out phenomenal speeds of 2 to 3 knots, matching the true windspeed. What a difference half a day makes!

4 hours later our watches changed again just as we were passing Stromboli. I lay in my bunk listening to descriptions of eruptions and lava flows and popped my head out the hatch to see. After a while sleep became the more pressing option and so I missed all the volcanic action!

Today has been a hot and mostly windless day where we have taken advantage of every elusive puff to get Quokka on her toes. In between periods of ghosting along under A1 or No 1 Jib and sitting motionless with sails providing little more than shade for the crew on the leeward rail, there’s been time for plenty for banter. Morale is still high…. But if we don’t get wind soon, we may find out how the pressure of starvation impacts our jovial spirits!

From Tracey and the team on Quokka

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