Update #26 - 21st October 2000 (7.00am)
Position - 43° 07' S, 161° 07' E

North breeze - 15 knots
Air temp - 13 degrees
373 nm to Snares Island

KOOEE (COMMUNICATIONS) ..... anybody out there?

43° 41' south of the Equator (the bottom of Tasmania) is the furthest south I have been on this planet. In another 44 nm of "southing", Sal and I will venture outside our comfort zone into new territory and will not emerge until we are in the South Atlantic some 50 days from now.

Yesterday was a big day. I spent a lot of time sorting out the SONY camera gear so that we can start some serious filming for the documentary world premiere in the CITY OF LAKE MACQUARIE? It's a pity the Melvic closed down.

I had a worrying noise coming from the stern yesterday that had me stumped for an hour. I thought it might have been a loose rudder, propeller blade hanging or a problem with the steering system or rudder post. All of the above are serious stuff but after an hour of climbing in and out of lockers I discovered the frame that supports the MONITOR self steering system had worked itself loose, and so after a quick tighten up that disturbing grumbling noise was gone. One of the control lines from the MONITOR was starting to chafe as it wasn't quite leading correctly through a cheek block. A little bit of friendly persuasion fixed that.

Time to introduce my imaginary friends, Kevin and Frank. As time goes by I will tell you a bit about them or you may like to e-mail and ask me a question about them. They are both new to the sport of solo world sailing. Generally they're pretty good blokes but they sleep and eat a lot of beaut BI-LO food, don't do much around the boat and don't tidy up after themselves. I had a little chat to them about lifting their game and they both were a bit taken aback as they said they were learning from me. Must go as the bottom of NZ beckons.

Take care everyone.

Tony Mowbray