Vancouver Island artist/writer Alison Watt's journal, as she and her husband Kim Waterman, sail out of their lives for a year on their boat, Circadia.
Saturday, July 18, 2009
41 degrees N, 142.5 degrees north and 142 degrees west.46 W
Last evening we had 13 jaegers milling about the vessel. They were likely Pomarine jaegers, though as I read about them I realized identification can be difficult. We seem to be visited by birds at sunrise and sunset. This morning when I awoke we were sailing, then we had pancakes. One of my favorite times on the boat is when the other two crew members are asleep and I am alone in the cockpit. Such was the case this morning and I was reading your book. Then the wind lessened and I had to hand steer to nurse her along; now the wind is 5 to 6 knots and the motor and autopilot aredoing the work. We are pointed at Juan de Fuca 894 miles away but there is a little high pressure between here and there that should be swept away by a little low pressure system on Sunday. So, I think we will have fluky winds till then, and hopefully will really crack on after that. There is a current of half a knot at least pushing us, so our daily runs seem good even on a wimpy day like today.
We had another flock of birds around the boat last p.m. but they were ruddy turnstones (15) rather than jaegers. I think the jaegers were parastic not pomarine. We are seeing Blackfooted Albatross several times a day and today saw our first Laysan. Lots of vallela (is that how you spell the sailing jellies?) It is getting cold here - the water is 16 degrees C.
We are at 800 miles to Flattery. Yesterday's run 88 miles. Ugh. There have been light north easterlies !%&!### for the last 24 hours and we have spent much of that time tacking towards home motorsailing at 3 to 4 knots. Ugh. Hopefully a southwester associated with a low tonite or tomorrow, but still no reliable sign of it in the sky and the barometer remains high. Solar panels both shorted out at the deck, haven't fixed them yet as we are motoring so much we have lots of power. Fridge is off.
Tonite the crew will get their first hash experience and there's been a lot of talk about it already.
I am an artist and writer. I usually work from my home and studio on Protection Island (where I also teach painting). This year (Sept. 08-summer 09) I'm trying to keep the artist's life afloat as my husband and I take time out to sail in the Pacific.