Pacific Crossing – Day 12 – The War of the Birds

We are 1,230 nautical miles SW of Zihuatanejo, MX.  The skies are grey and there are dark squall lines to port and to starboard.  The wind is over 20 knots and the seas are rough, choppy and white with crumbling crests.  We are still making over 6 knots running downwind with the wind and seas.

We made about 60 gallons of water yesterday and completely filled the tanks.  We also showered which was quite nice to rinse all the salt and sweat off!  I even made an extra bucket of water to rinse the flying fish crime scenes and amazing amount of bird crap off the boat.

Which brings me to the title of this post.  We (I) have declared war on the sea birds.  I thought we were staying ahead of them by keeping them off the spreaders.  Well, those little bstrds outsmarted us.  For a few days we were smelling a hint of either dog sh!t or fish and we couldn’t figure out where it was coming from.  Then yesterday morning Alyssa said the bimini smelled like fish.  I asked “Well, did you make sure there wasn’t a flying fish stuck up there?”  To which she replied “I checked, nothing.”  Puzzled, we went about our daily routine of keeping Ellie running tip-top and on course.  Well, later that day I stood up on the side rail and looked at the solar panels which are mounted on top of the bimini and wouldn’t you know it, about 20 lbs of bird crap was covering both solar panels.  I mean caked on and covering about 80% of the panels!!  So freaking nasty!  Oh, I was beyond annoyed.  So out came the salt water washdown and the dock brush and I went to work removing all the incredibly smelly and potent bird droppings from our panels.  An hour later, the panels were clean but the watery crap all dripped down onto the bimini leaving nice white streaks as a reminder.

So, I have declared war on those damn birds and pitty the next unfortunate one to try and land on Ellie.  I will be honing my slingshot aim this afternoon.

Flying fish are still landing on deck every night.  Last night I was on watch in the cockpit and one landed on the side deck.  I tried to help him but the little guy was flipping, flapping and freaking out.  I finally was able to grip his wing and fling him off the boat and then hosed down the deck to try and rinse the blood and scales.

Ellie continues to claw away at the miles and we are now 4-5 days away from where we plan to cross the ITCZ (6 N, 128-30 W).  We are seeing the beginning of the ITCZ now as the skies are dark and full of water.  According to the forecast, we will have good wind all the way our waypoint but we will also have rain and some squalls.

We still have all of our fuel reserves as we have not turned the engine on in over a week.  We should have enough fuel to motor across the entire ITCZ if necessary.

The battery bank is depleted a bit due to the overcast skies.  I am waiting for the waves to subside before I can run the generator.  I don’t want to get any salt water on the genny.  We should be fine even if we don’t charge until the doldrums.

Happy Friday everyone!  Have a great weekend!


Current position:

17:49 Z

10 14 N

121 07 W

230 True

6.2 knots

Wind: 18 – 20 from the NE

Thank You

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