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Jean-Luc van den Heede crosses date line

Sunday December 29th 2002, Author: Jean-Luc van den Heede, Location: Transoceanic

That’s that done! I crossed the date line during the night at 0310 hours GMT. I went directly from Saturday 1610 hours to Sunday 1510 hours and so I am now 12 hours ahead of GMT.

I shall now give the distance on the rhumbline track (i.e. without taking into account the curvature of the Earth - if I didn't do this I should go through the middle of the Antarctic!) relative to Cape Agulhas which is the southernmost point of South Africa, a few miles before the Cape of Good Hope. It’s a point that I have rounded up to 36S/20E.

At the moment I’m having a rough time. The sea is completely broken up, the wind has continued to blow at more than 30 knots since the last storm and the waves are completely disorganised as the wind has changed direction several times. At times Adrien falls heavily into the trough of a wave and each time the hull pounds and the rigging vibrates.

I am obsessed with the worry of breaking something and in these conditions rest isn't always easy. But, for the moment everything is holding and tomorrow we should get out of this washing machine drum situation into more agreeable conditions and start the New Year more serenely.

Until tomorrow JL VDH

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