Lat: 15 27.05′ S
Long: 62 33.71′ E
Inst Speed: 18.2
Wind Dir: 151
Wind Speed: 19.5
Distance last 24hr: ?
Distance to finish:

Email from the boat to shore: 

From: OmanTri
Date: Mon, 9 Mar 2009 05:36:26 -0000
To: update
Subject: rain showers in the tropics

It’s raining, and somethimes that also means big increases in wind speed –
we are in one right now, torrential rain, and wind increased suddenly from
14 to 25 kts. and big shifts. Then after a while you sail out from under the
cloud, and things settle down.

We have been lucky this past 24hours we have made great progress northwards,
the wind has been stronger than predicted with the knock on effect of an
increased boatspeed, and the counter on the DTF meter rapidly reducing. We
need to make us some good miles now however as we have the doldrums to
cross, and then some long upwind tacks back to Muscat. For our doldrums
crossing however we might be lucky, we are hoping to find our way through
them by noon tomorrow – being slow for just 6-9 hours, we have been picking
a spot to cross 10S for a few days now, and will contiue to look at the
satellite pictures for next 6 hours to see if any adjustment needs to be
made – we are looking for the place where the winds turn most quickly
between SE and W or NW. There is some science to this and a lot of luck. We
hope to have the science about right, and are hoping our general good
fortune so far this trip will see us right for the part of the equation.

Life is warm onboard as you can imagine, cabin tempretures are in the 30s
during the day, and seawater ( and hence our drinking water) temp is right
up there too 28 degrees – It’s little wonder that the islands of Mauritius
are so loved by holiday makers. We of course don’t have the luxuary of any
cooling systems, no AC, no cold drinks, no cold food. We are to some
degree relient on old fashioned ways to cool down, drink lots, sweat lots
but also have a small electric fan by each bunk. It’s not hard to see why
this area was so feared by the sailors of old – sometimes sail powered ships
would be stuck in the doldrums for days, weeks even, driving the crew to
madness. We have the luxuary of a good supply of freshwater supplied by the
watermaker, rather than being reliant on rain clouds, and ships stores. We
have hi-tech food and drink adatives to replace the salts and other minerals
washed out in our sweat, and we have snack bars designed to ensure we get a
proper daily dose of vitamins and other minerals. We also have a super
lightweight hull, and efficient sails so any wind we have can be quickly
harnessed to forward progress. Being on a sail powered whaling ship must
have been incredibly tough.

This part of the indian ocean is interesting – we are sailing in 2400m deep
water, but to our West, a large areas of shallow water – Cargados Caragos
Shoal is just 16m deep in places, and must be a meeting point for all sorts
of seallife. We have had our own fair share over night – with Mohsin
rescuing a flying fish that found it’s way into the cockpit at speed… when
they hit it’s quite a shock, at first i thought something had fallen from
the mast, but quickly realised what it was. We haven’t seen any of the big
ones yet – but this was a good size and did well to make it back into the
sea with Mohsin’s assistance. It could so easily have been flying fish into
frying pan, as a title to today’s email.

So in the time it’s taken to write this, the squall is gone, Mohsin has had
a shower in it, and it’s bright sunshine skies again – wind direction back
to normal, and we are doing 16kts once more….. .nice

Weather Router’s advice: 

From: Commanders’ Weather
To: Musandam
Subject: weather
Date: 09/03/2009 12:13:44

To: Charles Darbyshire and the crew of

From: Commanders Weather Corp

Event: sail around the world

Last Position: 14 31s/62 52e at 1130utc Mon, Mar 9

Prepared: 1300utc Monday, March 9, 2009


Looks like some really slow going next few days and donít see a whole lot of
options to avoid this

1) Satellite imagery shows some showers/squalls off to the W, around 14s/61w

2) Another, larger area, is noted around 8-10s/60-70w (with least coverage
west of 62w)

3) Light SE flow today

4) Wind likely to back for a time, then become light and shifty towards
00utc Tuesday

5) Wind shift likely somewhere around 10s

6) However, winds still may be quite variable around 8-10s

7) Flow becomes NW north of 8s then will become more NE north of 5-6s

8) Not very confident how computer models will do with the wind next few

a) latest guidance indicates very light and shifty conditions thru Wed ñ
probably a little more wind W than to the E

b) models typically do poorly around here with the wind, but very light
winds likely

9) Basically, take best course from the wind you have

a) generally aimed you towards 11 30s/64 30e then more or less N


1) suggest aiming towards 11s/64-64 30e then to near 8s/64-65w ñ may have a
little better breeze to the W than to the E

Some estimated positions below

Wind directions are TRUE, wind speed in kts, and time is UTC

Mon, Mar 9

18: 110-140/ 5-10

WeatherÖFair to partly cloudy with ESE seas of 3-5 feet

Tue, Mar 10

00: 080-120/ 4-8

06: 040-060/ 4-8

12: 350-020/ 5-9, near 11 30S/64 30E ñ may be a little more breeze to the W
than to the E

18: 300-320/ 4-8
WeatherÖPartly cloudy.
Seas 2-4 feet

Wed, Mar 11

00: 250-280/ 4-8

06: 030-050/ 4-7

12: 300-330/ 5-10 near 8S/64 50E

18: 310-340/ 5-10

WeatherÖPartly cloudy. Maybe a couple of scattered showers. NW-N seas 3-5

Thu, Mar 12

00: 270-290/ 5-10

06: 300-330/ 5-10

12: 310-330/ 5-10, near 5S/65 30E

18: 360-020/ 4-7 heading NW?

WeatherÖPartly cloudy. Maybe a spot shower. N to NE seas of 3-5 feet

Fri, Mar 13

00: 030-050/ 4-7

06: 030-060/ 5-10

12: 050-070/ 6-11, near 1 25S/66E

18: 060-090/ 7-12
WeatherÖPartly cloudy .
Seas of 3-5 feet or less

Sat, Mar 14

00: 080-100/ 8-13

12: 050-070/10-15, near 3 30N/63 30E

Best regards, George Caras

Commanders Weather Corp.
Tel: 603-882-6789

A selection of pictures from today: