Day 1060 [Aug. 28/11 JST] – Typhoon Talas Update – Day 2

 Today's Report
Aug. 28/11 JST 

Position:  27°03'N, 142°11'E (Ogasawara, Chichijima Island, Japan)
Remaining to Yokohama:  502 nm (ETA: ?)

NBSDIII, tied to a mooring buoy by 4 lines (not the 3 we mentioned yesterday), spent an uneventful night as Typhoon Talas slowed to near-stationary speed and was expected to remain a Category 1 typhoon as it slowly passes Chichijima in 2 or 3 days.

Yesterday's projections indicated it would grow to the next category in the scale of 1-5 about the time it reaches Saito-san's position. That it will not is of course welcome news as we wait out the next few days.

Saito-san sounded rested and at ease during the call this morning, confirming that his boat was doing very well in the current conditions. He said that he thought the winds had reduced (which we could confirm, at a lower 27-30 kts) and that the waves are about "1½ to 2 meters, so not so bad," he reported. He said there were no swells coming in from the ocean.

We relayed the boat's status to the Coast Guard, where the officer on duty said his own visual inspection from shore showed her to be resting easily at the mooring. He thanked us for calling, since "it's best if we can hear from on-board as well" and asked that we continue to relay the information as we receive it from Saito-san.

We got some clarification on his mooring lines. Saito-san said he has three 2-inch lines and a fourth 1-inch line that so far show no signs of wear after more than a day of 30 kt-plus winds.

"I'm on a big ship mooring buoy and on the next one over is the Hahajima Maru," which he identified as a large inter-island cruise ship. He said there are three large mooring buoys in a line, outside the fishing harbor but inside the port, with both the leeward and the windward shores about 200 meters away. That gives plenty of room for NBSDIII to turn as the wind direction changes.

Even though Talas appears to have moderated somewhat, the Japan Meteorological Agency warns that winds near the center of the typhoon still have a 70% probability of reaching 65 knots (down from the 75 knots in the projection given yesterday). We told Saito-san that he can expect winds to slow a bit today, then strengthen in 2 days to 55 or 60 knots as the eye passes through. The center is currently 220 nm to his south-southwest.

Talas at 0800 this morning, 220 nm from Chichijima
At least at the moment he has no complaints and, if anything, seems to be rather enjoying this newest in a long and continuing list of reminders from Mother Nature that even when you're near finished, the circumnavigation really isn't over until you're back tied to the dock in your home port.