I am following quite a bit of Ocean sailing at the moment. The differences between experiences couldn't be greater. At one end of the spectrum you have the guys and gals in the Barcelona World Race getting smashed around in the Indian Ocean
“Descriptions do not do the Indian justice, and for rookies like us, the seastate and gusty wind of the last few days has been a baptism of fire,” says Breymaier. “We have learned a lot about what our boat wants, what it can take, and where redline is. It is going to make the coming weeks much easier; of that I am certain.” The Neutrogena is averaging between 17 and 19 knots en route to the Amsterdam gate.
Not every boat survived the rough seas. Pre-race favorite Michel Desjoyeaux and co-skipper Francois Gabart retired from the event after high winds snapped their mast. Two weeks earlier, Jean Le Cam and Bruno Garcia were also forced to withdraw after their vessel, President, was dismasted near the Cape Verde islands.
At the far end of the spectrum are a group of retired Brits making their way across the Atlantic at 1.5 kts on the An-tiki on a raft made of plastic tubes. (I am embarrassed to say I just got the pun in the boat name. Duh!). Here is a brief except of what life's like for them.
We had a brief visit from a couple of dolphins yesterday, and they performed a few tricks like leaping out of the water and making a great deal of splashing back in before getting bored with our sedate progress and moving on. Dave and Anthony took some plankton samples yesterday afternoon, and spent an interesting hour or so looking at them through the microscope. From outside the cabin I could hear some “ooohs” and “aaahs” so assume the specimens were interesting anyway ! We now have several plankton samples in jars taken from various depths and at different times of the day and night.