Day 971 [May 31/11 JST] -- A Shorter Route as the Miles Fall Away

Today's Report
May 31/11 0800 JST 

Position:  21°49'N, 171°43'W
Remaining distance to Yokohama finish:  9.8%

A delighted Minoru Saito watched the sun rise into a crystal clear sky this morning, on nearly flat seas with winds hardly more than a moderate breeze. That gave him an excuse to continue motoring, with the result that NBSDIII is eating up the miles toward home. After a route change and 178 more miles under the hull, he now has less than 10% of the circumnavigation remaining.

Due to the weak winds (not to mention growing confidence in the engine), he's decided to go more directly toward Yokohama rather than follow a more round-about route. Previously he planned to ride the easterly tradewinds, then do a turn up to the north. That longer route would have added about 200 nm to the trip, but also about 5-8 days at the slower speeds under sail.

Instead, he now plans a more direct heading toward the Izu chain of islands that mark the final several hundred miles before reaching Tokyo Bay and, 20 miles later, Yokohama.

White line shows his previously planned route [click to enlarge]
Distance in last 24 hours: 178 nm DMG
Total distance completed: 24,989 nm

To Yokohama: 2,800 nm (measured)

To Mid WP: 748 nm
Heading: 280°
Reported boat speed: 6.5 kts (motoring at 2000 rpm)
Average boat speed: 6.7 kts
Average daily DMG over last 4 days: 160 nm (measured) 
Weather: Clear, sunny & warm
Temperature: 26° C
Barometer: 1016 hPa 
Wind (from): 4-8 kts E
Waves: 1.5 m
Sails: Genoa 0%, staysail 0%, mainsail 3pt reef
Engine: 23.5 hrs @ 2000 rpm; .5 hr @ 2300 rpm
Generator: 0

[Weather and wind forecasts are from ClearPoint Weather, a Saito 8 contributing sponsor.]