Still moving well on the good ship Ocean Planet today. Snuck in a gybe last night as it started to lighten up, and I knew we needed to get west and stay in the breeze. I was very careful and the main is none the worse for the jibe. I have put up the heavy reacher for added speed since it is fine to sail a higher (more westerly) course on this jibe to stay in the wind.
If I was pushing harder it would be the big genniker instead of the reacher, but this is fine and we’re better prepared for the squalls that may start soon. The big question, and what matters the most, is positioning for the weather and crossing the infamous ITCZ (Inter Tropical Convergence Zone), or the “Doldrums.” I have already got into the habit of referring to it as “The Bozo Zone.” The Bozo Zone is a lot narrower further to the west so that it is usually best to try to cross there. We have to sail further to get there, but it beats getting stuck in the often vast area of no wind alternating with vicious storm squalls.
If you are following the class two positions, note how far east a lot of them went yesterday and the day before. Now they are paying for it by coming out on a bad angle and they have further to go to get to a western crossing point for the Zone. Brad Van Liew has been a bit smarter I think and he keeps opening up his lead on them. Of course, he must be smart since he keeps winding up going almost the same way as I do! Great minds think alike….;-), but don’t think I’m getting cocky because it is still possible we could get stuck in the Zone and the others could still catch up!
I just made a batch of “Potatoes Planeta” one of my favorite quickie dishes: big batch of instant potatoes, salsa, olive oil (lots), parmesan cheese (lots, too), garlic powder (good thing I’m singlehanding), and some tuna. Mix it all together and you have Potatoes Planeta! And of course several times a day I take my Mariner’s Vitamins (http://www.intensivenutrition.com/), to make sure I don’t miss any important minerals, etc.
So long for now as it’s time to eat!