…and just as we rose from our seat, the squall hit.

Striking us at 2am, this was the first squall and the first really powerful wind of the Leg 6 journey.

MeteoGIB weather information

The wind hit the sail very hard, heavy rain started, visibility was gone and we found the ship at a 45 degree heeling. I could only watch as my chai vanilla rooibos tea bag – a gift from my advent calendar, given to me by a good friend – melted in my spray jacket. The team indoors felt the galley tilt and the sleeping sailors were rolled into the nets on their beds. To say we were excited and surprised is an understatement.

Crew on the nightshift

Team 3 was on the night shift from midnight to 4am. We usually spent our time baking bread or muffins, telling stories and getting to know each other better. Earlier during the evening we all had our first shower and felt very refreshed. The night was calm with only a few stars when we started the watch. It seemed to be pretty unspectacular at first – Millie began a podcast on why bananas are a bad symbol for seafarers. Our crew are very superstitious, and they would not take bananas onboard as provision. Just before the squall surprised us, we set the sails for a light wind and shut off the motor. When the squall struck, we were VERY overpowered! From 12-2am, the wind was a steady 17 to 20 knots. Quickly, we were super wet over and over, no time to put on our foul-weather clothes. Now we understand why they won’t take bananas onboard! Our fellow sailors came on deck, curious to find out what had been going on and not wanting to miss out on this different moment.

On a good note: this shower was our 2nd shower within just a few hours! After waiting 5 days to have a shower at sea and really looking forward to it, we were treated to this second shower—drenched by a squall. 2 hours later, we snuck into our bunks, not sweaty for the first time during the journey, but almost looking forward to get snuggled under a blanket.


Crew in their spray jackets

Thank you to our official weather consultants at MeteoGIB for helping us navigate any and all weather conditions!