Tin Tin's Sailing Calendar

Wednesday, 5 April 2017

Sail Ho!

Having said that we were getting fed up with nothing happening we at last had two tuna strikes yesterday and brought in a good one which will feed us for about 3 days.

I came on watch at midnight to relieve Justin. The moon was close to setting and the sky had a long ominous cloud with a slight tinkle of water reaching the deck. I ran the radar to check on rain squalls, but found nothing except a signal that looked like two ships twenty miles due south. I scanned the horizon to look for lights, albeit they were really too far to be seen and was rewarded with a steady light on the horizon. At that range it was probably the bright light of a fishing vessel, but I couldn't see the second one.

As the watch progressed I lost the radar signal, but we seemed to be slowly overtaking the light. Finally I found the radar blip again at 5 miles just when I handed over to Emily.

I set my alarm for 05:20 as we had decided to try to catch the booby perched on the dinghy and take off the frayed blue line caught on his left foot. Just we were about to bag him, his head came from under his wing and two beady eyes looked straight at Emily down his long sharp beak. Then he was off into the first light of dawn.

It was at that point that we saw that the fishing boat was actually a yacht, now less than 2 miles away and slightly astern. They had only a jib up. No AIS signal and no response to radio. I assumed hey were single handed and asleep.

Later they woke up, turned on equipment and were surprised to see us just ahead with three sails set. They called and we found it was a 46' boat called Acapella which left Las Perlas on the 15th March and didn't pass through Galapagos. They are in contact with fifteen other yachts in the Puddle Jump radio net.

We spent the morning making a ships lig as suggested by George and measuring our speed to test the accuracy of our equipment. The conclusion is that the adverse current we are measuring is probably true. Most perplexing!

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