On the Way to Martinique
Gale force winds kept us in Itaparica for the next three days. On the 23rd of May, we weighed anchor in the pouring rain and sailed to Bahia Marina in Salvador. There we filled our tanks with both fuel and water, and then headed straight to the seas. Two days later, we finally found the trade winds and, as a bonus, a counter-current to the Brazilian Current tha tenhanced our speed by one to two knots. After rounding the north-eastern corner of Brazil, the strong Guyana Current came to our assistance, and we travelled between 135 and 155 miles per day. Sailing was enjoyable once again!
On the 1st of June at 5.58 am, we crossed the Equator and left both the southern hemisphere and winter behind us. Just a few hours later, it was as if someone had pushed a button as the winds suddenly died and we were left with only a gentle breeze and a light swell that rocked our boat. We had entered the Inter Tropical Convergence Zone (ITCZ) or the doldrums as it is also called, an area in the ocean just north of the Equator where there are no winds to speak of. We have now been motoring for one and a half days and, according to the GRIB files, we still have two more days of motoring/motor-sailing ahead of us before we'll get to the trade winds again.
On crossing the Equator, Pekka also left his winter-look behind.
We have been fishing continuously but without much success. The other day, we again lost a lure, one of the few we still had left. The only fish we have managed to catch so far was a flying fish, but even that was clearly an accident as the hook had penetrated its eye. However, the size of the fish, circa 30 centimetres, made it a perfect lunch for two. This was the first time we have ever eaten flying fish as normally we return these charming ocean flyers back into the water whenever we find one flapping on the deck. This was also the last time we ate flying fish unless absolutely necessary as the crew's unanimous verdict was: edible but far from tasty!
Our current position is 00° 46,096' N, 42° 48,635 W, so we still have about 1,350 nautical miles to go before we'll reach Le Marin, Martinique, our next port of call.