November 15: caught the scent of the islands, picking up speed for home
November 15, Sunrise:
This morning, we are speeding up, at 10 knots, with the jib and mizzen full open and a single reef in the main. It seems like Hikianalia has caught the scent of the islands and is flying home.
Yesterday and last night, the squally, rainy weather continued.
Last night, the lucky 10 pm to 2 am watch had their first dry watch in 3 days. They were all decked out in foul-weather gear, ready for the downpours, but none came. The other two watches got full use out of their rain gear. Beautiful, consistent winds blew out of the east-northeast at 15-20 knots all night. Unfortunately, 100% cloud cover remained for all watches, with only a few stars spotted briefly, including Makali’i (Pleiades), A’ā (Sirius), Hōkūlei (Capella), and the planet Jupiter.
One poor mālolo (flying fish) that flew onto our deck and flopped around was quickly returned to the sea. Tiny bioluminescent life continues to glitter in each breaking wave and along the hulls as we move through the water. Finally, we say aloha, ā hui hou to the glowing jellyfish-like creatures (that lit up as they bumped off our hulls last night) since they were nowhere to be found tonight.
- course: west of North, heading 343 degrees True (Nā Leo Ho’olua)
- speed: 10 knots
- weather: complete cumulus overcast. No clear patches. No high- or mid-level clouds visible through the lower level. Frequent rain, very humid.
- wind: northeast, 20 knots gusting to 25 knots
- sea state: northeast 6 to 8 feet predominant, north-northeast 4 to 5 feet, (NE and NNE sometimes “stack up” to make impressive “speed bumps”, southeast 4 to 5 feet. Wind waves and chop.
Hawaiian Star Compass (Click on the link for an explanation of the names of the directional houses of the compass. Click on the compass for a larger image.)