FROM 1-23. Next landfall Tasmania

Oct 10,2005 – 0900hrs UTC

0900hrs 10 Oct 2005 UTC 35’19”S 012’18”W Ref 427

DB:130, 7495 GPS 138 51/59. The numbers are just beginning to stack. Scene two of Act 5 of the Drama has begun.

South of Africa, girt by sea, beset by natural forces, steeped in compromise and apparently bedevilled by cliche -what do we do now? Strategy for scene two of this leg requires us to get down into the top of the Roaring Forties, the permanent westerly airstream that blows around the world between about 40 and 60 South. This band of westerlies carries a series of quite to very intense low pressure systems – rotating clockwise – each with an associated front. North of it are the high pressure systems, rotating anti-clockwise, one of which we have been dodging for the last week.

Tactically from here, we must judge where lies the best latitude to ride the next front in a couple of days and at the same time put us far enough south to stay below the following high and in the top of the westerlies. We are looking for the best compromise between getting bashed by the nasties in the front and getting far enough south to keep doing the business. We need to be under the high and just in the top of the lows. Looking at the last grib, I think we will level off at about 3630 south and ride the front then reassess whether we go further down when it has passed. I think we will probably have to.

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