Lat: 30 06.19′ S
Long: 59 17.25′ E
Inst Speed: 18.6
Wind Dir: 113
Wind Speed: 19.2
Distance last 24hr: 393.96
Distance to finish: 3304.45

Email from the boat to shore: 

From: OmanTri
Date: Sat, 7 Mar 2009 02:21:47 -0000
To: update
Subject: sunny sunny indian ocean

Our first proper taste of the indian ocean again is just coming over the
horizon.The sun is putting on a great show, and it promises to be a fabulous
day. I am not sure if last night was the last we’ll see of our sleeping bags
but it could well be. Certainly long leg thermals will be replaced by
thermal shorts by the end of the day. and a few items of warmer clothes
stuffed to the bottom of the kit bag. It’s getting warmer for certain, sun
hats, sun cream, and sun glasses will be the order of the day soon.

Yesterday afternoon we were sailing along well -getting ourselves
positioned for the next 5 days or so, and were fetching not quite up wind –
but over a lumpy short sea, this combined with the angle of the boom, our
heading and the position of the satellites meant our ability to get online
was slightly reduced – a much slower connection that we have become used to.
The lumpy sea was another bone shaker/boat breaker – and it was a relief
when things chnaged and we could stop having to hang on to the bunk just to
stay in it, and not go to sleep wondering if we’d seen the mast upright for
the last time.

The next few days do look pretty good with some good trade wind sailing to
be done, and having worked hard to get ourselves positioned well for it,
it’s a welcome relief that for the next few days we should be making great
progress in solid winds, later today we should be deep enough downwind to
hoist the gennaker which hasn’t seen the light of day of a while, and get
some good way to the north. After which we might run into the brick wall
that is the doldrums. We are keeping everything crossed that they are good
to us, and we’ll be crossing them at what we hope will be the narrowest
point, and directly S to N to minimise the time spent with low wind speeds.

Looking at the route we could have taken closer to the direct line up NE
from South Africa, it looks awful now – there is a nasty looking low
pressure system of S madagasca that would have given 40kts upwind and very
rough seas had we gone that route…. so however long the route S and E was
, it was a good choice, and hopefully the payback is coming in the next

All this talk of good progress, then the doldrums is swings and roundabouts
for the ETA discussion onboard, it just adds to the complexity of being able
to make up a realisting ETA figure – which i am sure you are all waiting
for. But the light airs north of the equator are less predictable, so it’s
hard to rely on a long term forecast – i’m afriad you’ll have to wait a
while longer to hear our thoughts on when we’ll arrive in Muscat ( but a a
hint to what’s possible look out for an equator N bound on perhaps Friday

Weather Router’s advice: 

From: Commanders’ Weather
To: Musandam
Subject: Weather 3/7/09
Date: 07/03/2009 13:40:59

To: Charles Darbyshire and the crew of

From: Commanders Weather Corp

Event: sail around the world

Last Position: 27 12s/59 38e at 1230utc Sat, Mar 7

Prepared: 1300utc Saturday, March 7, 2009


1) Like your position very much ñ thank you and good work!

2) Low pressure south of Madagascar is moving away, so the threat of a big
header is ending

3) There is a suspicious area of thunderstorms near 10-12S/75-80E

a) I do think a low will form in this area, but should move slowly S or
SE from there

b) this system is not a problem for you guys

4) Easterlies will start to veer later tonight/Sun morning

a) would like to cross 60E on or before 21S, but goal now is to maximize
boat speed towards the N and NNE

5) Doldrums still look like a mess and will aim to cross 10S around 61-63E

a) looks better to the E than to the W, but donít want to waste our good
wind speeds over the next 36 hrs trying to go further E

b) bottom-line, if winds are further right/sailing angles allow you to
point further E, without hurting boat speed then do it

c) doldrums look more complicated/wider to the W of 60E

6) Todayís weather model forms another low pressure between 5-10S/W of 65E

a) GFS has a habit of this and over forecast the number of lows by at
least 60-75%

b) should not base any strategy on any equatorial low until we see some
squall/thunderstorm activity, which is signal for low pressure development

7) Strategy still the same

a) try to go N as best you can when you hit the light winds

b) port tack when in W and NW winds ñ goal is again, as fast as possible
towards the N

c) hold port tack until the winds veer into the NE and then go to
starboard ñ goal is to get max distance N

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

Sat, Mar 7

18: 100-120/13-18

WeatherÖLots of sunshine and E-SE seas 4-7 feet or less

Sun, Mar 8

00: 090-110/13-18

06: 100-120/14-20

12: 120-140/13-18 nr 21s/60e

18: 100-120/12-17

WeatherÖFair skies and an E-ESE sea 4-7 feet

Mon, Mar 9

00: 110-130/10-15

06: 100-120/10-15

12: 100-120/ 8-12, near 14 55S/61E

18: 090-110/ 7-12

WeatherÖFair to partly cloudy with ESE seas of 3-6 feet

Tue, Mar 10

00: 090-130/ 5-10

06: 130-070/ 5-8

12: 050-330/ 4-7, near 10 10S/61 20E

18: 330-270<5

WeatherÖPartly cloudy, any shower threat ending with a wind shift into the W
and NW. N and NW swell increasing to 3-5 feet

Wed, Mar 11

00: 270-190<5

06: 190-230/ 4-7 and on port gybe

12: 270-300/ 7-11 near 7S/61 10E

18: 270-300/ 7-11

WeatherÖPartly cloudy. NW seas 3-5 feet

Thu, Mar 12

00: 270-300/ 7-11

12: becoming 330-010/ 5-10, near 2S/63E

WeatherÖMix of clouds/sunshine with a scattering of showers. A few may be
squallers and others will be breeze killers. Seas NW-N at 3-6 feet

Best regards, Ken Campbell

Commanders Weather Corp.
Tel: 603-882-6789

A selection of pictures from today: