Miles traveled day 8: 122
Miles traveled total: 992
Miles left to Niue: 107
We’re just about to put this passage behind us, with just over 100 miles to go. We’ve slowed down significantly because we need to arrive during daylight. We realized a couple of days ago we couldn’t guarantee going fast enough to make it Thursday night because the winds were going to ease, which they have, so we’ve slowed down. At night we like to keep the jib out as much as possible to steady the boat so it’s easier for the off-watch to sleep, so right now we have no jib out at all and we’re poking along (or rolling along should I say) at 3.2 knots. We’ll speed back up after dark, timing our arrival to pick up a buoy right after daybreak tomorrow. The weather has continued in our favor and the winds should be fine for an early morning arrival.
The water temp has increased and is back up to 75, which is very good. It had dropped down to 72 for a while, which helps keep the freezer cold (we have a keel cooler), which helps with power consumption while on passage. But 72 is not so good for diving when we get there. One thing we need to add to our supplies is a pair of wetsuits. When we left we thought we wouldn’t want to dive in places where the water was too cold for our noeprene skins, but that’s not necessarily true. Hopefully there’s a dive shop on Niue with some wetsuits to rent if the water stays cold. My travel guide pre-dates the last hurricane that nearly flattened Niue, so I don’t know which of the services that they list have been reopened since they picked up the pieces after the big blow (I think it was about 3 or 4 years ago).
We had a big event this morning when the wind did turn far enough to the northeast that we had to gybe the sails. That’s the first time we’ve done anything besides roll the jib in and out in 8 days. All is quiet now, as we’re just waiting out the day reading some books and looking forward to the last night watch of the passage.