Dark Star Daily Update – July 12

1) 0800 PDT Position is:  24 deg 00 min N, 146 deg 01 min W

– Sea: SWELL 4-6′, 2′ WIND WAVES
– Wind 15 KT @ 060M
– Pressure 103.7kPa/1037mB

3) COMMENTS: Yesterday we finally broke clear of the murk and experienced our first real day of tradewinds sailing!  Sunny, warm, 20 kt NE winds, puffy clouds, the whole deal.  It’s the primary attraction on the Transpac.  Having to go literally one whole week 24/7 without enough light to cast a shadow or recharge batteries with our solar panel has been the most trying aspect of this race so far.  It has required a lot of Macgyvering to keep our critical systems supplied with the power they need.  We’d actually planned for such contingencies, and ultimately needed to press every single backup plan into service plus come up with a few new workarounds on the fly.  Think Apollo 13. Yesterday’s sunshine was like an oasis for us. Everything got hung out to dry, sunblock was applied for the first time and the batteries just drank up those electrons!

On the sailing front, the boat is holding together well so far. If the clouds disappointed then the winds have largely exceeded expectations.  We’ve had 20-25 kts right on our polars for most of the race and the boat has been flying.  The Hobie 33 is proving to be every bit the downwind machine we’d hoped.  I think we’re all growing a little bit weary of living in a hobbit hole with four guys, their dirty laundry and a bucket.  Can’t wait to see land!

Current ETA in Hawaii is sometime this weekend.