23 July 2007

Noon Update : 23-July-2007

Timor Sea Crossing

  • 104nm last 24 hrs
  • 215nm to Kupang, Indonesia
  • 231nm from Darwin, Australia
  • winds SE 10-15 knots
  • seas S 2-3ft
Happy Birthday to June Sherman (Amy's Grandmother in Florida)!! Thanks for the great package of candy we received just before we left Darwin! Also, a Happy Birthday to Mom Larson in Tucson Arizona!!

Slow overnight sail with really light winds all night. Ran the engine for one hour to charge up the batteries. Sailed the rest of the night, averaging 3.5 knots all night. The winds picked up slightly in the morning and now we have been averaging 4 knots since.

Still have a few boats around us. Was able to chat with S/V Shiraz, who was 4 miles ahead from us. They have since blazed ahead of us with their spinnaker flying.

S/V Blue Sky is one day behind us. They did not leave Darwin until Sunday morning because they were getting last minute supplies for the boat (paper towels).

We also have a new F.O.S. (Friends of Sandpiper)! Welcome S/V Sunburn, who we met pulling into Cooktown. They are sailing with 2 kids and are 4 miles off our bow.

We are hoping to make Kupang early Wednesday morning. If we keep this speed, then we should be arriving right on time.

I apologize for the late postings. We are in some kind of Sailmail black hole and we are having a hard time getting a connection. The antennas that we connect to is one in Firefly, New South Wales, Australia, that is 1200 miles away. We have used that antenna for the last year. The next antenna is in Brunei, which we are getting closer to (now 1200 miles away). I think the problem is that we are right between these two antennas. So hopefully the Brunei antenna will start working for us the closer we get to it.

The other reason it is hard to get connected is that when we transmit out emails on our SSB radio, the transmit signal is so strong that is shuts off the autopilot, which makes Sandpiper sail in circles. So when we transmit, one of us has to be on the helm with power shut off to the autopilot while the other person works on getting a connection with the laptop.

More in 24,
Tom and Amy

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