Day 1 Nelson to Fiordland

Date: Friday, February 5th 2021 Time: 23:00 UTC (12pm local) Location: 40° 31′ S, 176° 00′ E COG:209 °T SOG: 4.2 kts Distance to the Milford (Deepwater Cove): 358 nm approx. 24 hr. Distance covered: 102 nm
The first 24 hours of our passage were a little hit and miss. We got out a bit later than we had planned and instead of the lovely southerly that had been blowing all morning as we were filing propane, dealing with our garbage and topping up gasoline, we had the usual afternoon northerly kick in and we were beating into it heading out of Tasman Bay. Thankfully it wasn’t too strong (at first) and Cameron and I even managed to get in a quick cockpit shower to wash away the sweat of the last several days. Cameron had been up and down the mast I-don’t-know-how-many times (6+) replacing the lower aft stay that had broken. We don’t have electric winches so he climbs and I belay him.
We have a fairly light and tight weather window in front of us. There looks to be some bigger winds coming, but if we make our averages, we should be in Milford before they hit. So, feeling a little pressure, we were beating into the steadily growing northerly in our faces. We soon found that our 100 carrots were all moldy and all the avocados and bananas were looking VERY ripe all of the sudden. The sink was filing with sea water for some reason and getting perilously close to overflowing into the jar cabinet. Cameron got nailed a few times by some good waves into the cockpit and he got into a fight with the furling line as it got stuck in the self tailing winch while the half furled (and dare I say delicate-old-lady)genoa flapped away loudly in the wind. You might not be surprised that we were feeling just a bit defeated and slightly, if not superstitiously, worried about our trip. We very nearly tossed in the towel and headed over to the Abel Tasman coast. But, logic prevailed and things seemed to calm down. I got the girls started on peeling carrots, the wind started to back us which leveled off the boat, draining the water from the sink and then… off we went.
Cameron snuck in a nap, we all had chili from the freezer for dinner and then we settled into our night watch routine. We had steady winds at our back through the night we reefed and reefed again gybed and then gybed again to get around the curve of Farewell Spit. Cook strait (where that wind was coming from) was blowing an easterly gale so as we curved around Farewell spit the wind curved with us. Just after midday the wind has died as predicted. We pulled out the spinnaker and hauled it up, but we found we didn’t even had enough wind to hold that. So, the engine it is. Isa is busy making banana bread (with as many bananas as she can fit into a loaf), we have a HUGE pot of ginger carrot soup on the stove and all is well on board.
Until Next time,
FYI, if you are commenting for the first time or commenting with a new email address, the post won’t actually post online until I approve the new user so don’t worry, it will get there once I approve you:) Keeps the rifraf (and spammers) out. No photos for a little while as we’re posting this over our SSB radio and sailmail. Hugs!

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