Sunday night, why it’s called “The Thrash to the Patch”

I’m writing this a week late. But right now the memory is still very strong. The operative word to describe Sunday night was miserable. As the wind picked up to steady a steady 20 kts, the boat started to really heel. We debated putting in a reef, because for whatever reason, everyone always thinks that heeled over with a full main is faster than not heeled with a reef. Hint: it’s slower than not heeled. Seeing dark clouds ahead ended the debate, as it was clearly a rainsquall, so we reefed. We had switched from the A0 to the Jibtop earlier, (both from Quantum, both new, and both fabulous sails) we we were flying along at 9 kts. Then we hit the rainsquall. Or rather the first rainsquall. The windspeed jumped up, and we had driving rain. we could have refilled our water tanks in the first 10 minutes. Unfortunately, it lasted longer than 10 minutes. We were back to heeling as much as we were before we reefed. Our speed was about the same, but we were much more uncomfortable. The waves also picked up, and we started burying the sprit into the waves. Which led us to discover that when we had extendeded the sprit out those last few inches to fully tighten the bobstay, we had forgotten to retape the sprit entrance into the bow, so we were again getting water into the forepeak. All our bags were there, which is why having waterproof bags is such a good idea.

The first big wave that made it all the way back to the cockpt also found the open hatch in the  cockpit for the quaterberth. Which woke Ted up in a hurry.

I’m not sure how many squalls we actually went through, because I wasn’t counting. Everyone was sort of hoping that the current one was the last one. But it wasn’t. The only good thing we can say about the night was that the boat stormtrooped through the night and we made up a lot of the lost ground on all the competition. And that Monday morning actually appeared.