Position Lat 57°48.10’S; Long 066°38.90'W

Course: 161°; Wind 25 kn N; Speed: 10 kn

In the end we succeeded. At 06:00 we were ready to take our "train" to the south. But more than a "direct" in reality it was a "local" and instead of the 25 real knots that I expected, the wind for the whole day remained below 15 knots and exactly from the North. I decided to proceed with a slightly narrower pace, setting our autopilot on 135 ° apparent wind, jibing every 2 hours. So we managed to maintain an average of 6 knots.

Outside the temperature was kept relatively high throughout the day, with a maximum of 8 degrees and mostly the sky was covered and without rain with the exception of two small squalls. On board, as usual when weather conditions are not prohibitive, we spend time in the kitchen this time preparing two donuts with chocolate, one filled with custard and the other with apple jam, both obviously "made on board". In the late afternoon, while I was doing my routine check of the equipment, I realized that the sock of the mainsail halyard was sheared at the level of the stopper, leaving the soul uncovered for a length of about 25 centimeters. A nice problem. The mainsail halyard is more than 60 meters long and not having a spare on board, the only one that could be cannibalized is the one of the Code 0. But before killing my favorite sail, I thought I'd try to repair it.

We have therefore blocked the halyard upstream of the stopper in order to open it without the damaged area disappearing inside the mast. At that point I secured both ends of the sock to the core, sewing them with 1.5 mm waxed thread, then covering the entire area with tape. In order to complete the repair we needed do cut a couple of meters of the halyard from the top of the masr, thus to ovoid that the repaired area would sit again close to the stopper. So we lowered the mainsail and asked to Jiri to climb the mast to cut the halyard. Fortunately, JIri is a consummate mountaineer and had no trouble getting up to the mast and to perform the work despite the waves of the Drake. A little bit of wind came along with the dusk. veering to North West and rising up to 25. The barometer  has dropped by 9 millibars in 10 hours, a clear sign that we are on the front of the low  we expected and which for the next 30 hours should push us to the south.

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Sunday, February 7, 2016 By Giamba