Mar 99 Updates

March 1, 1999, Caribbean Passage, Day 5
Time:   18:00 hrs
Wind: 20-24 kts NE
COG:   296 deg
SOG:   8-9 kts
ETA:   March 9th
Current:   None
Barometric Pressure: 1008 Mb
Distance Sailed in Last 24 Hours: 175 NM
Position:   Longitude 40 deg 47.64W Latitude 02 deg 57.87N

Conditions: Winds steady @ 20-24 kts, but moving slowly east. Seas still 2-3 meters and less confused. Skies overcast with periodic sun and rain squalls.

Highlights:  Finally a good day with a few miles under our hull!  Actually, 175 miles is normally an average day, but we'll take it. Unfortunately, it was at the cost of an uncomfortable ride for all. The seas were right on the beam, making for lousy sleeping last night. In the forward cabin it felt like I was in a tumble-dryer.  I'm sure the rest of the boat wasn't much better with all the hatches closed tight. Just when you were about to fall asleep, the occasional rogue wave rocked the boat to a 45 degree angle mashing you up against whatever was next to you. Despite a general feeling of lethargy, we're all happy to be moving again!

Bob Greymont aboard Gypsy Spray:
Bob's position @ 19:00 hrs GMT - Lat. 13 16N, Lon. 52 55W. Winds out of the NE @ 12 kts. Nothing to report other than all is well with Gypsy Spray. He is now under 800 miles from St. John.

March 2, 1999, Caribbean Passage, Day 6
Time:   18:25 hrs
Wind: 18-20 kts NE
COG:   311 deg
SOG:   8-9 kts
ETA:   March 9th
Current:   None
Barometric Pressure: 1010 Mb
Distance Sailed in Last 24 Hours: 190 NM
Position:   Longitude 43 deg 33.56W Latitude 04 deg 38.28N

Conditions: Winds let up slightly to 18-20 kts. Seas also subsiding a bit. Skies continue to be overcast with periodic sun.

Highlights:  Well, we didn't set any records but we did pull off a 190 mile day and things are definitely looking up! The wind is settling down a bit and blowing just aft of our starboard beam. The seas are subsiding slowly and the boat is not rolling quite as much. You can actually sit just outside the companionway and not get wet from a wave crashing on deck. Cooking is easier, cleaning is easier and without a doubt, sleeping is easier.

The last few days certainly do not qualify as rough, but just uncomfortable and hot. I suppose that when you experience 4,000 miles of comfortable (slow) downhill sailing, you become a bit spoiled.  It's the shock of suddenly experiencing 20-30 kts forward of the beam in 10-12 ft seas that brings you back to reality, reminding you that this is part of a sailor's life.

Bob Greymont aboard Gypsy Spray:
Bob's position @ 19:00 hrs GMT - Lat. 14 21N, Lon. 55 32W. Bob was trundling along nicely this morning when the halyard for the roller-furling jib decided to let go. Thankfully, the sail did not end up in the water like it did for us aboard Out of Bounds.  After 2 trips to the top of the mast, he was able to rig up a spare halyard, roll out the jib and continue sailing. However, given that he is not comfortable with the temporary fix and he's only 336 miles out of Antigua, he's decided to stop, repair it and keep moving to St. John. Other than that he's had a great Birthday!

March 3, 1999, Caribbean Passage, Day 7
Time:   18:20 hours GMT
Wind: 15-20 knots out of the NE
Course Over Ground:   299 degrees
Speed Over Ground:   6-7 knots
ETA:   March 9th
Current:   1 to 2 knots against
Barometric Pressure: 1011 Mb
Distance Sailed in Last 24 Hours: 191 NM
Position:  Latitude 06 deg 05.82 North,  Longitude 46 deg 13.71 West

Conditions: Winds continuing out of the NE letting up slightly to around 15-18 kts. Current moving against us is making the seas a bit confused. Skies sunny but grey.

Highlights:  Not much to report - sorry, feeling uninspired to write anything. Just one of those days... For those that haven’t read the February 99 Enewsletter, Jeff’s posted it to fill the writing void from today.

 In short, we had another decent day mileage wise, winds are holding, current's slowing us down, it's still hot, nothing's broken (knock on wood) and we're all looking forward to arriving in Barbados.

Bob Greymont aboard Gypsy Spray:
Bob's position @ 19:00 hrs GMT - Lat. 15 17N, Lon. 57 48W. Everything is fine onboard and the halyard is continuing to hold. He thinks it'll be OK but is still planning to stop in Antigua. He expects to make landfall Friday morning and will most likely duck in behind Green Island in Nonsuch Bay.

March 4, 1999, Caribbean Passage, Day 8
Time:   21:00 hours GMT
Wind: 14-16 knots out of the NE
Course Over Ground:   295 degrees
Speed Over Ground:   6-7 knots
ETA:   March 9th
Current:   2 to 3 knots against
Barometric Pressure: 1012 Mb
Distance Sailed in Last 24 Hours: 164 NM
Position:  Latitude 07 deg 28.01 North,  Longitude 48 deg 45.23 West

Conditions: Winds still out of the NE at around 14-16 kts. Strong current against @ 2-3 kts. Seas significantly more calm. Skies partly cloudy.

Highlights:  Remember yesterday when I said nothing was broken...well, that didn't last and I shouldn’t have jinxed us with the written word. By the end of the day, the list numbered 4 items. First was a broken bat-car (the cars that attach the mainsail to the mast, allowing it to slide easily up and down). Next, the line that controls the roller-furler for the genoa chafed through and had to be replaced. Then the refrigeration decided to quit. And lastly the alternator went south on us again (for the 4th time). The good news is we were able to fix the first two and the not so good news is we may not be able to fix the last two. We'll know more tomorrow, but for now, we’re on a reduced power diet...

Bob Greymont aboard Gypsy Spray:
Bob's position @ 19:00 hrs GMT - Lat. 16 17N, Lon. 60 16W. Bob’s still expecting to arrive in Antigua Friday AM and then move on to St. John as soon as the halyard is repaired.

March 5, 1999, Caribbean Passage, Day 9
Time:   17:30 hours GMT
Wind: 16-18 knots out of the NE
Course Over Ground:   294 degrees
Speed Over Ground:   7-8 knots
ETA:   March 8th or 9th
Current:   0.5 knot against
Barometric Pressure: 1010 Mb
Distance Sailed in Last 24 Hours: 149 NM
Position:  Latitude 08 deg 33.57 North,  Longitude 50 deg 44.40 West

Conditions: Very little change - winds out of the NE at 16-18 kts. Current has let up to 0.5 kts against us. Seas @ 2 meters with clear skies.

Highlights:  After trying everything we knew, we were unsuccessful in repairing both the refrigeration and the alternator. While there is an outside chance the fridge may come back after defrosting, there's not a snowball's chance in our freezer (sorry, couldn't resist) of the alternator working again. Basically that means two things. First, is that we've had to go back to splitting the service batteries into two banks and charging them individually with the starter alternator. And the second is that we'll be having not one, but two legs of lamb for dinner tonight.

That's right, the fridge and freezer may not be working, but our appetites still do. Thankfully we're almost at the end of our Atlantic crossing and we only have a few more frozen things we need to eat in the next few days. The real tragedy in all of this is that we won't be able to toast our transatlantic crossing with a cold beer. However, I'm sure that won't stop us from getting one on shore!

Bob Greymont aboard Gypsy Spray:
Bob is officially in Antigua! During our radio schedule this morning, Bob broke in briefly only to say he was dropping the anchor just then and he would talk to us on the evening schedule. Unfortunately, we were having alternator problems this evening so we could not talk to him again. Hopefully he'll be up in the morning.

March 6, 1999, Caribbean Passage, Day 10
Time:   17:45 hours GMT
Wind: 14-16 knots out of the NE
Course Over Ground:   300 degrees
Speed Over Ground:   6.5-7.5 knots
ETA:   March 8th
Current:   0.5-1 knot against
Barometric Pressure: 1010 Mb
Distance Sailed in Last 24 Hours: 173 NM
Position:  Latitude 09 deg 49.52 North,  Longitude 53 deg 25.95 West

Conditions: Similar to yesterday - winds out of the NE at 16-18 kts. Current still slowing us down from between 0.5-1.0 kts. Calm seas and clear skies.

Highlights:  This morning's sunrise brought with it good news for all of us (including the leftovers and warm beers). It seems that the refrigeration system has healed itself. The culprit, moisture in the system and a blocked and frozen expansion valve. As happy as we are about the fridge, the same cannot be said for the alternator. Having conceded the fact that it is dead, we've been happily helming for 5-10 hours a day while our service batteries charge. Considering the conditions, no one is complaining in the least.  Just two more days.....

Bob Greymont aboard Gypsy Spray:
As of 4:00 Caribbean time Bob and Gypsy Spray were 18 miles from the island of St. John.  He sounded absolutely elated as he was sailing along on a beam reach in 12 knots of wind and calm seas. Even after being hailed by a US Coast Guard Cutter, Bob could not be deterred from completing his journey. Bob, congratulations on completing your circumnavigation from the crew of Out of Bounds!

March 7, 1999, Caribbean Passage, Day 11
Time:   19:20 hours GMT
Wind: 16-18 knots out of the NE
Course Over Ground:   296 degrees
Speed Over Ground:   8-9 knots
ETA:   March 8th
Current:   1 knot with us
Barometric Pressure: 1012 Mb
Distance Sailed in Last 24 Hours: 163 NM
Position:  Latitude 11 deg 27.13 North,  Longitude 56 deg 14.00 West

Conditions: Winds continue out of the NE at 16-18 kts. Current finally with us @ 1.0-2.0 kts. Calm seas and clear skies.

Highlights:  We reeled in a beautiful Mahi Mahi just before sunset, completing another beautiful day on passage. The only difference is that tomorrow will be our last for this leg. It wasn't hard to tell, as everyone's demeanor changes as we approach dry land. The prospect of dropping the hook tomorrow night has everyone quite elated to say the least. And with up to 2 knots of current pushing us, we should be there before midnight on March 8th.

A few thank you’s are in order.  First, to Mike Wojnar and Jim Archibald at Jamestown Boat Yard for hooking us up with a new alternator that we’ll be receiving in Barbados when we arrive.  The second, to Antonio Da Silva from Barbados for supplying us with the address for the Barbados Yacht Club.

One more thing, say hello to our new crew member, Jack.  He’ll be joining Out of Bounds from Grenada to Antigua.

March 10, 1999, St. Michael’s, Barbados, West Indies
I received a phone call from Bill and the crew to let me know that they had safely completed the crossing from Capetown, South Africa to Barbados.  All told, the passage was 5400 or so nautical miles and spanned 42 days.

Once the new alternator is installed, Alex will be able to start sending the daily updates. Shouldn’t take long, everything should be back to working order by tomorrow.  Cheers, Jeff

March 17, 1999, Prickly Bay, Grenada
We’ve done it! After sailing South from Newport, Rhode Island on November 1, 1996, we arrived in Grenada on January 30, 1997. We then headed West across the South Pacific, Indian Ocean, and then the Atlantic to arrive back in Grenada. Today, we have technically finished sailing around the world!

No matter what happens in our lives from here forward, we will always this journey in our memories. I’ll write more on the experience in the next few days, but, right now we are going out to celebrate!

March 22, 1999, Prickly Bay, Grenada
Note from Jeff: Bill, Suzie, Jack, and of course Lucy are recharging the batteries in Grenada.  Alex has flown back to Connecticut for a few weeks to get things in order for Antigua Race Week at the end of April. So, I guess you could call this a bit of a breather until Out of Bounds starts moving north towards Antigua.

Bill plans on leaving Grenada on Thursday or Friday and some of the stops include the Tobago Cays, Bequia, St. Lucia, and Martinique.  Alex and I will be getting together in the next few days and hope to have some new videos to post later in the week. Cheers, Jeff

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