we're [eventually] going to leave soon!
Wednesday, March 12, 2014 at 19:48
Eric in mexico, pacific crossing

We're still sitting here at the dock, moving bulky gear around the over-stuffed cabin, ready to cross an ocean. Why are we sitting in a slip, holding our collective johnsons, you may ask? Well unfortunately for us the weather does not share our state of readiness. Instead it has decided to be light and flukey.

Slow sailing isn't necassarily bad. In fact, with a light swell, it's down right enjoyable. We have a big drifter. 8-12 knots of wind can be a downright pleasure.

But 4 knots true when you need to move downwind? Well, that's a little different. And that's the wind speed I heard on the SSB this morning for a boat that's sitting a few hundred miless off the coast. Looking at the forecast it's just going to get softer and softer over the next week, eventually blowing lightly from the south (ie: the wrong way entirely).

The furthest forecast I can see, including on Fleet Numerical's models, shows the Pacific High establishing itself (finally) eight days from now and hopefully a low pressure trough gets shoved down on us from the Gulf of Alaska. If those two things line up, that will create enough power to get off the coast (courtesy of the storm's remnants), and the Pacific High should be sitting there allowing the trades to operate at a good strength and extend far enough to the east that we can "hook into them". Mike Danielson at PV Sails went over some of this with me and I felt better finally having someone explain to me what the monsoonal trough really f'n is.

That's a lot to wish for and it's at the outer edge of a model trying to predict global weather, but every week or two conditions look better than they did a week or two before.

So, here we sit. On many cans of chicken and pork, we sit, waiting for the winds to align so we can shove off in a nice breeze towards Polynesia. 

In the mean time we've implemented a "chill the f out" policy onboard. After weeks of scrabbling to get ready, we're as ready as we can reasonably be. We've crossed the threshold whereby anything stressful or onerous at this point doesn't have a major impact on our success. 

And as anyone who's prepared for a big journey knows, it's a lot of work and sometimes you need to stop and remind yourself that the whole thing is supposed to be enjoyable, not just bearable. 

Article originally appeared on Rebel Heart (http://www.therebelheart.com/).
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