Day 35 Salt, squid and the sound of a familiar voice 06/10/13

 Oct 6 Penrhyn Atoll 2

Position:  10. 19 S, 156. 15 W

A busy morning on deck this morning. I did some minor sail repairs to the main headboard connection to the sail before I raised the main.

Very light winds all night and lots of uncomfortable rolling. It’s an inescapable motion that rocks every inch of the boat, all of its contents and every molecule of my being.  

We’re on a good course at the moment, travelling at 5+ knots and the motion has settled down considerably. Big rain squall last night washed everything clean. The build up of salt after a few days makes the boat uncomfortable to walk around on as the salt crystals are like sand. I found a  small squid on deck this morning. 

My big news is I talked with Cliff and Isobel on the ham radio after the Pacific Seafarer’s Net. It felt like meeting a lifelong friend I hadn’t seen in twenty years! We caught up on what has been going on with family and friends over the past six years, chatted about the other ham operators, and life in general. It was wonderful to speak to them.

(Cliff is in Balclutha on New Zealand’s south Island. Glenn spoke with Cliff on the ham radio for a number weeks as he sailed down the east coast during his first circumnavigation attempt in 2007.  We’ve kept in touch ever since.)

storm petrel

Storm petrel photo: Wikimedia Commons

M Layland asks: What news on the ornithology front? You should be seeing Tropic birds, terns and Magnificent frigate birds while you’re near the islands.

Glenn:  You are absolutely right about the proliferation of birds now that I am close to the islands and they are magnificent! Storm Petrels, Boobies, Tropic Birds, White Terns but no Albatross, because there is not enough wind. I think my favourite is the small dark storm petrel. They are around the boat day and night. They are distinctive in that they are the only birds that have a voice – a soft squawk. Lately, when I’ve been on deck shortening sail either just before, or during a rain squall I can hear them around the boat. I can’t see them at all as during these rain squalls at night.It’s difficult to see the bow of the boat and if it wasn’t for the light from the masthead, I could not see a thing. How they navigate is a total mystery. These black out conditions leave me completely disoriented. Most of the birds are attracted to my fishing lure, which is dragging behind the boat. Disappointingly, the fish are not. 

 Course 205 T Speed 6 knots Wind NE 10 Waves E 2m Cloud 50 % Temp  31 C Baro 1009 Miles in last 24 hrs: 100 nm




  1. Graham Smith says

    Hi Glenn,
    From one senior to another, you continue to inspire me to continue my prep on my 1980 Ericson 35 for a trip to Hawaii and back. Not quite up to your scope of trip, but enough for me.
    Stay safe and keep that safety tether attached.

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