It is Day 6, the sun is shining brightly from a clear blue sky yet again, but this afternoon the breeze is only a gentle zephyr so the iron spinnaker is working to get us around Cape Reinga.
Whales were seen spouting last evening, a couple of dolphins went going past, a shark caused alarm until it was recognised as a huge but harmless basking shark and we’ve just seen a shark fin go gliding past. We’ve seen many gannets, a petrel, an albatross and just now the first ship in days.
Last night in the 8 – midnight watch we had a good brisk wind so could make up a big distance travelling at 6.6 knots. It was fabulous sailing at a great pace under a clear and starry sky.
It is near the end of our watch; we are sailing 035deg and have reached the end of the Northland peninsula with the sand dunes of 90 mile beach still in sight. Cape Reinga is in sight and sometime soon we’ll be going through the turbulence where the Pacific Ocean meets the Tasman Sea.
The often stormy Tasman Sea has been really calm for most of our time in it, for which we are quite grateful!
Stew, who is a professional disability counsellor, ended his watch by taking a group of young New Zealand crew members who are doing the Leadership at Sea course for a tour of the accessibility features of the ship.
The Port Aft watch is signing off for today – Sherwood, Stew, Del, Chrissie, Yvonne, Kasserine and Marg