Gipsy Moth IV rolling along hoping for wind

Yachting Monthly contributor, Alastair Buchan, is sailing as mate aboard Gipsy Moth IV, for the longest leg of her second circumnavigation – from the Galapagos to the Marquesas in the Pacific Ocean. Here is his latest report:

Last night flashes of lightning lit the sky as the Gods exchanged greetings. Fortunately they remained on good terms and it came to nothing. Then the rain blew in out of the black hole of the night.

For days, it seems like forever, we have been buoying our hopes up with the promise of favourable winds between eight and ten degrees south. On the morning radio net everyone was reporting wind but none had found the trades. Worse, the weather forecast showed a near lack of winds further south for the next three days which made it rather foolish to continue moving in that direction. So we are now more or less pointing towards the Marquesas and if the GPS speaks true we have around 2500 nautical miles to go.

The rare squalls fine away leaving Gipsy Moth rolling in the swell flogging the sails to death out of sheer frustration. No wonder crews on square riggers went mad in the Doldrums.