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March 17, 2007

Final Approach - update at 0400hrs GMT on 16th

LOCATION: Arabian Sea Crossing
Day: 46
Longitude: N:12°03.611'
Latitude: E: 044°05.232'
Heading: 260°M
Wind: n/a, Force: calm
Miles total Mumbai - Djibouti: 1,896
Miles from Mumbai: 1,835
Miles to Djibouti: 61

We've been pumping like demons since the last update, slowly closing the gap to Djibouti in the knowledge that we would cross the lions share of the Gulf of Aden before wind changes to the adverse northwesterly. Then in the early hours of this morning we received some rather disheartening news from my father via SMS on the satphone to indicate that the reversal of winds from predominantly north easterly to north westerly had been brought forward. This is not good news.

As of 0600 hrs GMT, in just three hours time, the wind in the ocean region we're in right now is due to start coming from the west to southwest at force 3 (10-15 knots). This would potentially halt our easterly progress entirely, with the only option being to track north for a while. Then by 1800 hrs GMT (10 hours from now), it veers around to the north, force three again (a little better), but then overnight tonight backing around to northwest 2 (not good).

What all this means is that the last 60 miles could end up being a real fight with a very uncertain outcome. All hangs in the balance right now and we are completely at the mercy of the wind gods. If they are in a good mood and grant clemency then we'll be pedaling into Djibouti sometime tomorrow late morning. If not, this final furlong could end up taking several days to negotiate, and either have the boat swept down south towards the weather shores of western Somalia, or necessitate a rescue.

Will update our situation in 6 hours from now.


Posted on March 17, 2007 5:32 AM


Wow!! You guys rock!! I'm speechless!
Sher, I was wondering when you'd get back from India and just then Manoj told me about this.
I can't believe it but I'm glad to even know a person who would do something awesome like this.

Keep it up guys!

Posted by: Mayank [TypeKey Profile Page] at March 17, 2007 9:03 AM