Day 42 – Here comes the sun

Isabel Burnham By

Day 42 – Here comes the sun

The last few days have finally brought us some warmer weather and some sunshine. We currently have the wind behind us and are surfing towards Hawaii. Doris moves beautifully through the waves. We’re so lucky to have her. A big hello and thank you to Cris and the team at Rossiter Yachts where she was built.

Everyone is enjoying the sun and is in high spirits. The Pacific looks beautiful in the bright light and we have been treated to some gorgeous sunsets and sunrises. The arrival of the sun means it’s all change aboard Doris as we switch our routines into summer mode. Doubtless it will only get hotter from now on, so we’d better start getting used to the new ways…..

Wardrobe: during the day, thermals are being put away and vest tops and shorts are making appearances, with long sleeve cover ups worn when the sun is too fierce. By night, a combination of the warmth and the reduced splash (as the swell is now following us rather than beam on) means that we are managing to keep our Crewsaver wet weather salopettes off, although we are usually still wearing the jackets as wind breakers. There is usually a consultation between those in the cabin about to emerge for their rowing shift and those on deck as to the optimal outfit for the conditions. Not wearing wet weather gear greatly reduces the time required to get ready to go out on deck, is more comfortable for rowing in and reduces the potential for Velcro-related trauma discussed in one of my previous blogs!

Water: our water consumption has gone up dramatically so we have our desalinator running for longer each day. We are all drinking more water in the hotter temperatures, often with added SOS Rehydrate rehydration salts. We each have Camelbak sports water bottles in holders out on deck to drink while we’re on the oars, as well as drinking in our breaks. The sunshine means that nearly every day is a good day for washing kit and Doris is now constantly draped with drying clothes. We also took the opportunity to all have another solar shower out on deck on Sunday and are all feeling much better for it.

Suncream: the suncream routine has started to take up a larger and larger part of our day. We apply and reapply our factor 50 suncream throughout the day and then use our lovely aftersun from Green People once it is cooler and before the night shifts start. Our panda eyes and life jacket tan lines are coming along nicely.

Cabin: the cabin is getting hot, hot, HOT! We have the hatches shut when we’re not moving in and out to prevent any water coming in, so it gets very toasty. Ironically, it is the rowers doing the work on the oars who are cooler in the breeze and the pair having their rest in the cabin who are sweating. We have stowed the sleeping bags away and are now only using our Sea to Summit silk sleeping bag liners at night.

Food: our hearty hot expedition meals which were previously such a comfort when we were wet and cold now bring us out in food sweats and consequently take a lot longer to eat. One bonus of the sun is that we can use it to heat up the wet rations that we have by leaving the foil packet on deck to get warm, rather than immersing it in boiling water. On the food front we had a big treat on Sunday when we ate an astronaut food cookies and cream ice cream sandwich that Claire Hammond from our sponsor Raymarine and her sons had kindly given to us. It was such a treat to eat something different and it really tasted like cookies and cream ice cream! Thanks so much to Claire and the boys.




  1. Karl says:

    Congratulations on your halfway distance milestone and on your new max. distance made good of 54.5 nm!!

    I am thinking that you are more than halfway there with regards to time. Finally some favorable weather conditions!

    Your my heroes! Keep it up.

  2. Simon TY says:

    Been away a few days. Had a prang on M25 a wrote off car. Everyone Ok. So, meanwhile you have ploughed on over half way ( and well beyond half way, no doubt on the map). Amazing. And Ice cream, and warm weather. I have had that space age ice cream and blow me it does taste of ice cream. Made me think…..what are the rules ? What is you see a ship and they offer to drop 4 cold beers over the side to you…..does that break any rules ? Or ice cream, or steak ( or whatever else you fantasise about, excluding sailors of course).

    Sounds as if among the tedium you are having extraordinary moments, life changing experiences, very little sleep, but lots of laughs. Keep going. AMAZING

  3. Jan R says:

    …and yet another record broken! Now you are officially more than half of the way there, and we’ll pray with you for continuous back wind.

    Natalia, you look quite burned on the picture, so we definitely believe the sun is out. It was fascinating to hear in detail how many changes the different weather brings to your daily life, and it seems like for the most part it is for the better.

    Spirits high! xxx

  4. Johnnie says:

    Brilliant distances – must be great to be doing a 100 miles every two days. Good to hear all the physical strains and stresses – I think it’s amazing how the body can take such a pounding and keep functioning on the two hours on and two hours off.
    It would be good to hear how the surfing is working. Is it like canoe surfing where it can twist off the swell or do you just glide down and get a great kick forward.
    Warming up here with the Ashes, Wimbledon and the Women’s World Football Cup…..all either about to start or ongoing.
    Scary to learn about my friend’s ST-Ys prang in his car on your blog. What a funny world.
    Over half way and Hawaii in sight – brilliant.

  5. Barney says:

    Let me add my congrats on the half way achievement. Awesome what you girls are doing and from the blogs, awesome how you are coping with the mental challenge. I am telling all my friends to follow Doris! That solar plane attempting the round the world is heading for Hawaii, if you see a giant albatross overhead one day or night you know what it is! Keep up the 50 clicks/day

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