Sunday, 28 December 2014

Happy Christmas from Juno

We finish the ARC at around 11pm on Tuesday the 9th December, 15 days after we left Las Palmas. Our final gybe as we round Pigeon Island is now well-practiced and for the first time for two weeks we are sailing up-wind into 20 knots with a reefed mainsail. Just as we approach the finish, a large motor yacht drops anchor ahead of us, completely obscuring the line so we duck behind it and come up hard into the wind, shooting the line and barely missing the committee boat – now that would have been a bad way to finish.

Wednesday, 10 December 2014


We crossed the finish line at 11pm last night. All well on Juno.

Thanks to everyone for your emails and comments. We finished 4th in Cruising B and 17th overall in the cruising division.

More details to follow after we have had some sleep!

Tuesday, 9 December 2014

ARC 2014 Day 15. Almost there

On the ARC in 2012 Kim brought with him a gift from Dr James Ashby, a close friend of his from Cornwall. If you have ever fished for crabs as a child you would recognise it immediately: a wooden frame wound with heavy monofilament fishing line, a large brass swivel impregnably attached to the end. When Mitchel, our grumpy fishing reel, gave up and cast all my best lures to the deep on our last Atlantic crossing, it was this hand line that came in to its own; we wound it onto Mitchel, despite his sulky protests, and hooked a big Dorado that we were able to winch in with no fear of the line breaking.

Monday, 8 December 2014

ARC 2014 Day 14 written by Fatty

Well get this! I have been invited from below decks to sit in the authors’ chair of the eloquently written Juno blog. This is surprising, given that my vocabulary stretches to that of an average ten year old, but perhaps the intention is to attract a younger readership.

Saturday, 6 December 2014

ARC 2014 Day Thirteen

We have been sailing on a broad reach all day, making reasonable progress and hitting our target of 200 miles in the past 24 hours, despite one hour of the day when we were almost stationary, all eyes focussed on the action at the stern of the boat.

Friday, 5 December 2014

ARC 2014 Day Twelve

Today was an eventful day with disaster narrowly averted and I am pleased to report that everyone is safe and well but with Fatty nursing an injured hand. 

Thursday, 4 December 2014

ARC 2014 Day Eleven

Yesterday started badly when I took over from Paul at 3am and he said ‘you might need your foulies’. This was an understatement. Rain was lashing the cockpit as he bade me goodnight and scuttled off to his dry cabin, leaving me sitting in puddles of water in the cockpit. Then things got worse: the wind dropped away leaving us rolling drunkenly in the swell, and still the rain fell. 

Wednesday, 3 December 2014

ARC Day Ten guest written by Kez

With all this talk of the difference of having two girls as part of this crossing compared to two years ago (clean heads, delicacies for supper etc), I thought I might correct any impression that Fatty and I spend our time cleaning and cooking. In truth there is a very fair division of labour, with Paul a more than dab hand in the galley and Frewie was even caught yesterday baking bread. 

Tuesday, 2 December 2014

ARC Day Eight and Half Way

We have now covered almost 1,500 miles since we left Las Palmas a week ago, around half way to St Lucia. We celebrated this milestone last night with Dark and Stormies at happy hour, followed by chicken curry served with accompaniments created by Thermo, our high tech galley slave. This tropical mood has been brought on by a marked rise in temperature as we work our way south towards to the equator.

Monday, 1 December 2014

ARC 2014 Day Seven

It is 10pm Juno time and I am on watch until midnight. We are on a broad reach and I have rigged a new sheet on our big genoa that reeves around a block on the port quarter, allowing the clew of the sail to rise, opening up the slot between the mainsail and the genoa, improving our downwind speed by a precious fraction of a knot.  I have realised that ocean sailing is a long game, not won by short sprints, but by sustaining above average boat speeds over the length of a passage.