Day 20 - Day 25 aboard Victory.
The last 5 days have been AWESOME. We’ve seen in Will’s 36th birthday and are now just over 1,000 miles left to go!
We’ve managed to make great progress since Fraser has been back on the oars despite rowing through a big low pressure system. Consistently hitting over 70NM in the last few days.
We made up 24 miles on Atlantic Discovery to then cross paths within 0.2NM! The Atlantic Ocean is thousands of miles wide and the fleet is spread over 900 miles so this really was a unique encounter. It was awesome to see their boat Ellida only a few hundred metres away. We called them on their sat phone and wished one another a Happy New Year and good luck for the remainder of the crossing to Antigua. Top lads!
Ellida isn’t the only boat we have seen this week though. We also had the pleasure of seeing a beautiful Yacht called Alejandra. She was also travelling to the Caribbean but at a steady pace of 11.6 knots (which happens to be faster than our top speed so far while surfing a huge wave). They saw us on the AIS (chart plotter) and came over to see what we were. It’s not often you see rowing boats over 1,000 miles from land so they were inquisitive. They came up along side us and all of the crew came out on deck. It was amazing to see new people for the first time in over 3 weeks.
They didn’t speak much English but we all waved enthusiastically at each other and wished each other well. They very kindly offered to give us a big bag of supplies and alcohol, but tempting as it was we had to politely decline their very generous offer. We are on an unsupported crossing of the Atlantic Ocean and had we accepted anything from them our crossing would then be classed as a supported crossing. It’s ok, we didn’t want that fresh watermelon , sweets , and beers anyway.
Wildlife report: We saw another whale but the conditions were too rough to get in this time so we observed from deck which was still really awesome. We saw a school of Dorado which were beautiful, so bright and exotic! Hedwig is still here and visits us daily.
Will’s Birthday was a great day! Not very often you get to spend a Birthday in the middle of the Atlantic, certainly one to remember. Glyn, Fraser and Duncan all thought the other had sorted Will’s birthday card so in the lead up to his birthday we fashioned a card out of a ration pack. It sounds pretty desperate but it worked really well and Will enjoyed the sentiment. We didn’t forget the booze though as Row4Victory barman Fraser cracked out a small bottle of whisky for us to toast the birthday boy.
Injury report: Will spilt some boiling hot water on his leg while making his dehydrated rations. He’s ok, healing well and hasn’t missed any rowing. Glyn smashed his head on the bow cabin wall right onto a bolt causing quite a lot of bleeding. He patched himself up and cracked on and is absolutely fine now. All of us are fighting through sores, blisters and hotspots on our hands, feet and bums but all managing well and rowing hard around the clock.
We are rowing in support of The Royal British Legion and Soldier On if you can, then please donate. Every donation makes a huge difference. You can donate through our website or by texting 70070 with the code ROWV59 followed by the amount. Many thanks in advance for all of your support for our amazing charities.”
Here we will be keeping you up to date with all our musings pre, during and post competing in the Atlantic Challenge race that started 12th December 2018.