Aegir Update - North Atlantic Drift

The North Atantic Drift.

Just under 300 miles to go and it  looks like we have flat seas and light winds to the finish. The good news is that we now have 10 knots of wind speed and doing 10.5 knots in the direction of Cornwall.

For me, I have seen the calmest seas, that I have seen in a crossing of the Atlantic . I have just quizzed the on watch team.  Clarke Murphy, Ian Budgen and Abby Ehler all concur (we have over 41 crossings between us).  

Only on day three out of 12, did we see any waves more than two meters high and that was in the Gulf Stream (the river of fast moving hot water that is about 50 miles across). Wind speeds have been modest,  we have seen little above 20 knots with a max of 28 knots. The average so far is just eight knots. Wave height less than one metre for 90% of the time.

Why so little wind? High pressure systems as simple as that! After a great first part of the race, working the shifts and  gulf stream, by the time we cleared the east side of the 'ice gate' we copped a ridge of high pressure  directly in our path. We took direct action by heading off to Greenland. Then we had a ridge extending south from Iceland and finally the big high pressure that spread from up from the Azores, which is now due to move north once more.

The high pressure had been on the cards for a week. We envied Teasing Machine and The Kid as they skirted north around the huge 'high' propelled by the winds from the low pressure over Newfoundland, which sadly was too far west to help Aegir, nevertheless spirits are high onboard and the tables are turning.

We are back to up to speed, still pushing as hard as we can.  We have an intriguing final 300 miles of light wind racing. We are even readying our anchor that might see the sea bed in the light winds and strong tides ahead?

Mike Broughton