Monday, June 25, 2018

NZ to Minerva Reefs - Day 3

This is the third day of the passage.  Michelle said it feels like the fourth day.  I agree.  We are tired.  Excited and happy.  But weary.  The motion of the boat has us continuously tensing unfamiliar muscles to balance ourselves. Just washing dishes provides a Pilates workout. 

The scale of the environment is awesome and sometimes intimidating.  It is BIG out here.  As I write this our boat is running along roughly parallel to the ocean swell.  The waves are smooth and broad, perhaps 4 boat lengths between wavetops.  The seas are 8-10 feet high but appear bigger.  The swell passes right underneath us like a slow motion conveyor.  We slow down a bit when we sail up onto the back of a wave while it lifts us like a floating bottle cap.  We sometimes accelerate and surf down the backside and round up a little - abruptly turning the boat off course then back in a few seconds.  It's actually tamer than some of the day-sailing I've done on the Great Lakes.  Talk about steep waves!  But this time around it's my house being tossed about.

The beauty of this place is hard to describe.  Last night the moon was back-lighting the wavetop foam as brilliant white accents on the dark gray waves.  As we head North closer to the tropics the ocean is becoming a brilliant "Pacific Blue".  The colder, nutrient-rich waters around New Zealand are more on the green-brown side of the spectrum. 

We've talked to several other boats underway. In the middle of writing this I talked to a guy named Rich on sailboat "Legacy".  He was familiar with Pogeyan having met the previous owner in Western Samoa years ago.  We see boats that transmit automatic identification signals (AIS). They appear on our electronic charts as a blip with the boats name, heading, speed and nationality. It's comforting to know there are others out here crossing the big blue pond with us.

It was more beautiful than this photo.  And this photo ain't bad...

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