Lat: 5 20.83′ S
Long: 61 26.07′ E
Inst Speed: 9.7
Wind Dir: 198
Wind Speed: 7.8
Distance last 24hr: 71.9
Distance to finish: 1783.60
some wind in our sails, but only fairly short lived
Mohsin & Thierry coax the boat along in light airs
Will the clouds have wind?

Email from the boat to shore: 

From: OmanTri
Date: Sat, 14 Mar 2009 03:42:12 -0000
To: update
Subject: Light airs still

Although we are still in very light airs, we have managed to move a few
miles, we have had two lots of 2-3 hours where progresss has been
reasonable. In roughly the right direction for us – NW. We need to get NW
to get clear of the light airs that are holding us. For now We are in winds
from around 200 @ 7kts . which means we are making NW course at 10kts.
Every 12 hours a satellite called quikscat goes overhead and allows us to
see windspeed and directions ahead of us – it’s a little course, but it is
a good way for us to see if the weather files we have are in anyway
accurate, and more importantly show up really well the transition line
between the doldrums ( official name InterTropicalConvergenceZone ITCZ) and
the NE trade winds. It is of course very warm still, but at least now with
some wind it’s managable, though i am not fully shore if i brough enough
tops to last me alll the way – may be i’ll be doing a bit of washing before
we finish.

This new breeze that we are sailing in has meant a change from CodeZero to
gennaker and back again a few times – which is not too much work,
especailly in the light airs, and at night, but in the heat of the day it
takes a full 500ml drinking bottle to help get over it! Generally though
conditions onboard are the same as the last 3 days. all indications are that
once we are N of 5s then the NE winds shoud start to appear and once N of
3S they should be well established. If this becomes reality then we’ll be
thankful, what we don’t want to happen is for this transition area to move N
with us.

Looking at different routing options ahead, but our options are fairly
limited we have to sail high on stbd to stay well off the Somalia coastline
Currently thinking to stay over 550nm of the coast but this may prove
difficult or slow. So we are watching the weather closely to see if there
are other options for the last 1300nm from the equator to muscat.

Lots of people have asked me in email th equestion – does it feel like a
long time? In some ways the answer is yes, and others the answer is no. The
finish seems quite close, even though we are still more than 2000nm sailing
to go, but each sun rise is like a new day, and you take each day as it
comes,there are obviously routines that help break the day up, and the days
slip by fairly quickly. Sometimes i find myself thinking we are on a short
trip and are nearly back to base, and think it odd that Muscat doesn’t
suddenly appear ahead of us before nightfall, and we’d be getting ready to
take the mainsail down, engine on, get dock lines ready before going out to
sail again the next day. Of course that doesn’t happen, night falls and we
keep sailing eating sleeping just the same as the last 65 days and nights.
These quiet conditions have meant that we all sleep a lot more deeply than
when we are being thrown around in waves.For the sleeper this means deeper
and longer dream sleep, some interesting ones coming out when people
stumble on deck after being asleep! and for those on watch tryig to wake up
the sleeper, it takes more than a couple of name checks to rouse the
sleeping crew man. I guess this means we are catching up a bit on our sleep,
but it also goes to show how lack of sleep can be a gradual thing, you don’t
feel super tired, but when your head hits the pillow – you’re gone.

Weather Router’s advice: 

From: Commanders’ Weather
To: Musandam
Subject: Weather 3/14/09
Date: 14/03/2009 10:37:06

To: Charles Darbyshire and the crew of

From: Commanders Weather Corp

Event: sail around the world

Last Position: 4 48s/61 25e at 0930utc Sat, Mar 14

Prepared: 1000utc Saturday, March 14, 2009


1) Quikscat shows the very little wind area to your ENE, SE, and SW

a) the latest GFS agrees with Quikscat and with us moving away from the
very light wind area today, but

2) Your web site shows SW, S, and SSE winds continuing for you, which
suggests the light wind area

is still to your N

3) Regardless, the plan is still the same ñ to get out of the Doldrums, we
must go N and NW

a) 1st priority is NW and the 2nd is N ñ you have done a good job getting
N with very little wind since we spoke yesterday

4) Do think we may see a bit more wind speed N of 3S tonight, but

a) looks very light near and S of the equator on Sun night/Mon morning

b) best trade winds do not develop until N of 1-2N

5) Still looks like high pressure SE of Oman, near 18N/63E

a) we will go N near and just W of 60E into the S Arabian coastline,
where a robust sea breeze will likely take place each afternoon. This way we
will avoid the high pressure cell, SE of Oman

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

Sat, Mar 14

12: 150-090/ 3-6

18: 110-070/ 3-6 ñ we are not out of the doldrums until the E wind freshens

Fair to partly cloudy and small seas

Sun, Mar 15

00: 100-070/ 5-9

06: 070-050/ 7-11

12: 040-070/ 5-9, near 02S/60 30E

18: 060-100/ 4-7

Fair skies thru Wed and NE seas slowly to 3-6 feet

Mon, Mar 16

00: 040-080/ 4-7

06: 050-090/ 4-8

12: 060-030/ 6-10, near 1 N/59 30E

18: 040-070/ 8-12

Tues, Mar 17

00: 060-080/ 8-12

06: 070-090/10-15

12: 080-100/11-15, near 4 20N/58 40E

18: 080-100/11-15

Wed, Mar 18

00: 080-100/10-14

06: 080-100/ 9-13

12: 080-100/ 8-12, near 8N/58E

18: 070-090/10-15

Thu, Mar 19

00: 080-100/ 9-13

12: 080-100/ 7-12, near 12N/58E

Fair to partly cloudy with NE-E seas of 3-6 feet

Best regards, Ken Campbell

Commanders Weather Corp.
Tel: 603-882-6789

A selection of pictures from today: