DAY 14: We’re still alive

Made 143nm for the 24 h. Slow considering the wind but with only the small #3 headsail and big seas this is consistent with our conservative sail plane and the (unexpected) half a knot of current against us (GRIB showed a west setting current of up to a knot). Wind is now at 15-20 knots from the east with 2-3m easterly long period groundswell and shorter period NNE sea of about 1m over that. Still pretty rolly and not worth putting more sail up. We both got a solid 4 h sleep on our off watches as there was nothing to do for the watch keeper except stay awake, keep a lookout and hang on during the wild gyrations. Expect to make the anchorage in Djibouti in the early h tomorrow morning.

Position 12° 13.390′ N 45° 18.974′ E
COG 250T
SOG 5.4kt
Log 9,743 nm
Engine 215.0 h

Lat 12.223167: Lon 45.316233

Update from HF Sked at 15:00 on 13/02/2020

Arbutus continuing up the Red Sea to Masawa. Southerlies kicked in for them this afternoon. Sunny Spells is 190 miles from Djibouti. Strong easterly winds, up to 30 knots and seas in the 2.0 to 3.0m range. Acalephe is 70 miles east of Sunny Spells, with similar wind and seas. Acalephe and Sunny Spells were both contacted by a Japanese Navy surveillance aircraft today and invited to ?call me if you need assistance?.

Position 12° 32.322′ N 46° 17.361′ E
COG 257T
SOG 5.8kt

Lat 12.538700: Lon 46.289350

DAY 13: Wind and Rain

166 miles for 24 h. Wind has been a pretty constant 15 to 20 knots from ENE since midnight. With only theÿ#3ÿheadsail and a little push from the current we are making a solid 6.5 knots towards Djibouti. At this pace we will arrive during daylight on Saturday 15/02/2020.

Position 12° 51.671′ N 47° 36.042′ E
COG 248T
SOG 6.2kt
Log 9,600 nm
Engine 215.0 h

Lat 12.861183: Lon 47.600700

Update from HF Sked at 15:00 on 12/02/2020

Arbutus at Bab El Mandeb Strait, motoring North. We are tracking the IRTC to the north of the westbound lane with 325 miles to go to Djibouti. Sailing underÿ#3ÿheadsail only, making 6.2 knots on a course of 253T. Wind is easterly at 15 to 20 knots. Acalephe is about 70 miles behind us, in between the east and westbound lanes of the IRTC. They have similar wind and have reefed main and poled out headsail.

Position 13° 11.440′ N 48° 38.537′ E
COG 253T
SOG 5.8kt

Lat 13.190667: Lon 48.642283