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17 November 2009

"Fish! Fish! We've got a fish!"

With an entry title like that, we might as well skip to the end of Monday, when the reel at the stern suddenly went "zing!" Yup, we landed a really cool fish, a Dorado (also called mahi-mahi, or dolphin fish. No, NOT a porpoise-dolphin, never fear!) Fresh fish for dinner, yum. And fish steaks in the freezer for later, too. Wild Tigris - Gib to Canaries

All of Monday the weather was beautiful and sunny, with light chop on top of some long, slow rollers. We're already noticing that it's warmer, and on nighttime watches aren't having to put on every bit of gear we brought to keep warm.

The autopilot is steering for us a lot of the time, and is behaving well even in the rollers. This setup, in particular, does something really cool - you can set it to keep the wind angle (rather than exact course) constant, so you keep the sails really full all the time. As long as the wind is reasonably steady, once you set it, it keeps you very near course with really good speed.

Things are pretty quiet, now that we're past the fishing areas - most watches last night didn't spot a single light anywhere. We'be been moving along under various combinations of sails and the motor. Tuesday morning Casey even managed an experiment with an J/80 spinnaker (an old one from his boat, Argo III) to see how it'd do as an extra downwind sail. More experimentation is in order, as it seems to behave oddly without having the head and tack held to a firm spot.

A couple of us are fighting off the Boat Cold, and so there's lots of napping while off-watch, but otherwise all is humming along. Sofia continues to whip up excellent food and stand watches in rotation, dunno where she gets the energy - WT is not a diet boat!

We're hoping the skies clear up a bit before tonight, as the Leonid meteor shower is supposed to peak tonight, and should be quite a show with good dark skies. Mother nature, of course, is going to go ahead and do whatever she pleases, but we can always hope.

225 miles, probably 25 or so hours, to Tenerife!

13:34 UT 17 Nov 2009
30 56.519 N
13 02.661 W

- Anne, for WT Wild Tigris - Gib to Canaries