I am just about done heading east. I rounded Cabo Calcanhar early this morning, and am now headed mostly south. This “horn” of Brazil is a pretty interesting place. The far east corner of Brazil, it is not a point, but more like a bulbous nose. So I can’t really round it in a day- it will take a few days until I can start heading west with my south. The tradewinds and currents come from South Africa, cross the entire south Atlantic ocean, and hit Brazil on the nose. Half of the current and winds keep going NE, along northern Brazil, the Guyanas, Trinidad and through the Caribbean, (you may remember we fought that current, like running on a treadmill, for many days). The other half bends around and heads south along Brazil and to Argentina. I hope to benefit from this in a few days. But the splitting up part makes the weather here quite variable. It changes dramatically and frequently, sometimes every few hours, from cloudy and 5 knot winds from one direction, to 25 knots and sunny from another direction 15 minutes later. Interesting sure, but I am glad to be leaving it behind.
Last night I made the decision to run along the shore in the rounding, and to stay there this morning. The offshore winds and seas were much larger, but the inshore route requires paying a lot more attention, as it is a winding path between the beach and reefs and sand bars and oil rigs a mile or two offshore. There was one pensive moment about midnight when the depth got down to just 8 feet crossing bar, and I need 7 for the keel. It was slow and go and hold my breath the whole time!
All is well, I am making progress, and looking forward to getting the wind behind me, hopefully around latitude 9.
05.13S 35.24W 2826nm gone, 2370nm to go. 8am 8/30