FROM 1-8. Horn to Falkland Islands

Mar 13, 2005 - 1500hrs UTC

1500hrs 13 Mar 2005 UTC 54’01”S 061’48”W Map Ref 120

From: Louise from Jersey, Channel Islands.
My brother, Rowley B. and owner of Django, is constantly reminding us of your intrepid journey. Right now, my own son is sailing through the Southern Ocean on one of the Global Challenge yachts but your situation sounds quite ghastly. “”Sailing”” with no sails etc – quelle horreur!! We are getting huge vicarious pleasure from your most entertaining sitreps. Keep safe, keep sailing and may the winds soon give you a chance to have a relaxing cuppa!

From Heggie
It is Friday night in Canberra. It’s a beautiful balmy autumn evening.
There are clear skies and lots of stars. I have had a few beers (Cooper
sparkling ales) at ‘Filthy’s’ the local hang-out on Friday night.

Over the past few weeks I have figured out the nutrients (nitrogen and
phosphorus) in the sediments of most Australian estuaries are important
controls on the water quality of our coastal waterways; that they are
predictable and are controlled by the abundance of diatoms in the
waterway. Well, it doesn’t sound like much, but small achievements in
science come after long periods of experimentation and deliberation. I
will tell you about it over a few ales.

Diatoms are also the most abundant plant in the oceans where you are
sailing. Their properties dominate the composition of the sediments
about 5 km beneath your keel. The diatomaceous signal in the sediments
is so strong that it dominates the composition of the circumpolar
sediments for several thousands of kilometers. The albatross probably
excrete diatomaceous faecal pellets. If you happen to catch one it is
probably good luck!

Sound like you are pretty close to rounding ‘the Horn’.

I look forward to the next update. I expect you will be celebrating with
a round of ‘Dr Coopers’. I will be celebrating your achievement and
drinking to your health.

Good luck. Cheers & laffs

From Ann G
Well done. Isabella wrote to me to let me know you were abeam the
Horn around 11 pm UK time Friday, and that the rum was flowing….
words do fail at times like this…While waiting to hear from Berri, I
was reading a website of Nancy (forgotten her last name now….)
trimaran rounding CH earlier this year. Solo flight. Castorama BQ.
Yikes, what bravery you all have. From the accounts of hazards assoc.
with CH, sounds like you had ideal conditions. Now onward to hot
showers, laundry, dry beds. The folks in Stanley must have more than
a cottage industry to assist weary, soaked fellow travellers in their
quest to round the Horn and beyond. Wanted to ask – what are the
differences in rounding the Horn if going from Atlantic to Pacific? Or
is it nasty either way? Ann

From Barry D.
I will open a good bottle of red in your honour tonight.

From Malcom
Congratulations Old Timers.
I guess you have just joined the Villiers Old Salts Round the Horn Club.
Pretty exclusive club. Good on yer!

From Graham S.
Congratulations Alex & Pete, how many other Brolgas have been round the Horn if any ?, not many glitz & glitter yachts either. You probably have some sort of a record. I have been particularly worried that nothing had been posted for 3 days.
Regards to you both

Some acknowledgements and thanks for good wishes: Rowley and Louise, wish your son all the best from Berri, Louise; David W in Hobart (new boat yet??); Gary – your plastic jars are everywhere! – Ron C (what new website?); Heggie – we can feel the diatomaceous signal from here – keeps telling us we’re thirsty, Gerry W, Ann – Much much harder going east -west – against wind and current and often v. nasty. Square riggers often spent weeks trying and I seem to remember Bligh gave up and went the long way around via the Indian Ocean. We’re a couple of softies really and only qualify for the earring but not pissing into wind, Kris, Barry D.; Malcom, from the salty ones, and Graham S – Brolgas are the go – we’ve got a BOG (Brolga Owners Group) going if you are interested – Steve can put you in touch.

We are well on the way across to East Falkland, just to the NE of the Burdwood Bank where the depth is only 100m in places. There’s a little rocky island caled Beauchene Island smack in our track 117 miles ahead, so we should be there in daylight, Kelp warnings all over the chart (digital Cmap version) but haven’t seen any yet. We’ve got about 35 kts from the NW so beam reaching at 7 -8kts, grey and overcast, water grey but glassy clear. Great sailing but cold – English Channel on a warm summer’s day!

More on stats – this laptop has been on continuously since Dunedin except when the generator died. Several minor crashes, which are a real pain because of the fragility of the USB link software – I have to get the reboot in just the right order or I get the microsoft blue screen of death and have to start again. Happened about half an hour before we got to the Horn – Murphy at work, and again this morning. There are so many applications and gadgets that have to work together that it is not surprising.

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