BSL kept on their toes!

19 12 2011

Hi all,

What started off to be a normal night at sea, with a spinnaker up running in 20 – 30 knots, putting a reef in the main every now and again, ended with a bang and crash.

Due to the unstable wind down here, where you get wind increases of 10 knots in 10 seconds, Campbell and I have been rotating driving regularly when steering under spinnaker especially.  It was around midnight, black as the inside of a cow again outside but the wind was reasonably stable.

I came down below to get some much need rest. I took my boots off and got into my bunk with all my wet weather gear on.  I was deep asleep and got this scream from on deck.  I leapt out of bed, put my boots on – wrong feet in each – and came thru the hatch like greased lightning and saw the wake out the back of the boat foaming and Campbell steering looking straight ahead with his eyes as big as sauces.  I could see it was windy and then read it was 48 Knots, raining and hail – f………………… was used a lot whilst we discussed how the f…………. we were going to get out of this.  The boat was fully loaded, pushing in the water from being overload, spray everywhere and freezing cold.  The feeling of the boat is best described as like when you a cruising along in your car with cruise control on and you go into a corner and don’t turn the cruise control off – an airy feeling. I took over driving and man it was all on.  We decided that we would snuff the spinnaker.

 My biggest fear is if you wait until the squall has pass, the wind will increase to 50 knots +, you broach and tear the rig out of the boat.  The snuffing didn’t work and to cut a long story short it, the spinnaker ended up flying horizontally from the mast head and the knife was out cutting sheets etc so the rig stayed in the boat.  The spinnaker finally hit the water and we towed it until the wind eased to 25 knots.  We winched it on board, fearing the worst but unbelievably it is still in one piece – bloody amazing. 

We ‘re working at putting things together so we can get up and running again, but in the meantime we have lost miles BUT we will be back into ‘young ones’ soon.  Amazing how you get these massive increases in pressure in a matter of seconds – 25 – 48 knots in maybe 30 seconds.

Character building stuff I say!!

Anyway, better get back.  Both of us need sleep and we need to work.