Race 10 - Day 16
Crew Diary - Race 10 Day 16
15 April

Mattias Dahlgren
Mattias Dahlgren
Team Unicef
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Being on deck at night and seeing the sky clear out made me hum an old favourite song, “The North Star is not a bright star, but a guiding star…..” Went off watch and crossed my fingers for the sky to stay clear. Went to bed and was woken up in what as usual felt like an instant… No problem getting up today though, there was to be a bright sunshiny day. This was so needed, although we have had quite “warm” weather with our southerly route it has been incredibly gray, misty, and drizzling. No horizon for several days, could not imagine this many shades of grey, actually a lot more than fifty of them. The moisture was unbelievable but as the Skipper and First mate constantly remind us of when they see our looks “This is what you signed up for…..” However, even our wind instruments gave up yesterday as if it was not difficult enough to steer a straight course in totally misty black skies without a horizon. However not only the Sun is back, after the skipper went up the mast in 25-30 knots of wind this morning we have our wind instruments back. The gray days were however enlightened by our competitors on Perseverance and Qingdao who had to dodge a giant fishing net and had the courtesy to come down and meet up with us, we have been fighting along the same starboard tack now for more than three days gaining and loosing on each other. We reckon we will be on starboard tack for about 1200 miles!! (which is extra lovely if you, like me, like to sleep on the port side bunk.)

A bit odd feeling having company in the middle of the Pacific like this. Having them close has also really spurred us to do our absolute best to squeeze every tenth of a knot out of our dear Big Blue Clipper Boat, the UNICEF chant in our head and mind, ONE FOR ALL, AND ALL FOR UNICEF! Initially, we had our course set for Hawaii for a while, but we had a race to race so our skipper put us on the right course towards Seattle with a perfectly matched moving front/weather system on a north-easterly course.

We are currently in third place and pushing desperately to be ahead of the boats coming in from North West, those boats have had blistering cold weather and they will not give up their gained miles easily. It looks like we will meet up quite close to a greater depression currently developing in Hawaii of all places, (luckily we did not go there after all). Stay tuned in on the tracker, it will be a tight race. (By the way, we pretend that Ha Long Bay, Viet Nam does not exist at all.) I reckon riding out that low pressure will surely be the subject of another blog. Now, we will keep on enjoying the sun, the blue skies, the music on deck, some occasionally salty spray over the deck, and the beautiful horizon. Having the tight rigging sing its tunes for us as we head Northeast with flying white sails.

Sail Fast and Stay Salty.