In Lat. 54º 59' Long. 65º 20'. The greatest yet on our calendar. As soon as the fog cleared away the land or mountains for 10 miles and more could be seen being well to the W. We had a fair breeze. Wind W. Running SE.
At sunrise all hands were on deck to see the cold and rugged mountains of Terra del Fuego. At eight Staten Island was in sight, and we were then in the mouth of the Straits going at the rate of eight knots. At half past nine we were through the Straits. Here was excitement for the gold diggers. The snow peaked mtns, the cold and stormy clouds told us we were near Cape Horn, that long looked for but dreaded point. At 10 o'clock set all drawing sails. The wind still holding favorable. The snow peaked mts were covered with a heavy bank of fog. As we passed the first cape in the straits we could see some grass and shrubbery, but it was a wild scene. The weather and all corresponded well with what I have heard of Cape Horn. At 12 o'clock the wind moderated and at 2 o'clock calm.
Looked clear in the W and as though we were going to have fair weather, but suddenly the wind hauled to the SW and in one hour we were under double reef topsails Now for a Cape Horner. Now for the cream. How quick the change of wind. How quick the change of countenances. How quick a heavy sea was running. At five the wind blew hard, and down went mizzen royal yard. Steering SE by E. The land is no longer in view and the clouds begin to frown, but with a stout vessel and crew we will sail till the storm comes down.
At night under a close reef main topsail, foresail, main spencer, and staysail. The wind blew hard till 10 when it commenced raining. The wind moderating.
Friday March 30th
In Lat. 55º 49' Long. 66º 10'. Commenced stormy and disagreeable. Wind SW in the morning began to clear up or look as though it was going to ( for the weather is very uncertain in this Lat.). We could see the land Del Fuego and Staten Land. Bearing N . We having drifted to the leeward (in the night the wind hauled W. Set all sail but a reef in the fore main and main topsails. At 2 P.M wind WNW. Going 7 knots. Heavy head sea. Our course SW by S. The wind was fair. All continuances changed to pleasant, but for an hour, wind hauled SW. Blew hard.
“mistake on date”
Friday March 30th
In Lat. 55º 49' Long. 66º 10'. Blew hard all day. Towards night moderated. Wore ship. The Wind W. Heading SSW.
Saturday the 31st
In Lat. 56º 40' Long. 66º 40’. Commenced with a light breeze from the W. At 1 o'clock it blew up strongly from the WNW. Going 7 knots. Towards night the wind hauled SW. Looked likely for a gale of wind. Took in all sail but double reef topsails. Tacked ship. Ran to the compass varying two points Made it WNW. Squally all night. Some very heavy, Accompanied with hail, snow, and rain.
Sunday April 1st at sea
In Lat. 56º 28' Long. 64º 41.' This is the third Sunday so rough that we could not have religious services. Commenced squally accompanied with snow and rain. Under single reef topsails.
This forenoon the Capt carried sail longer than ever wishing to hold his own. Thermometer down to thirty three, the coolest we experienced. Cold and very disagreeable. Blew hard in squalls all day. In forenoon reef topsails, clewed up main Sail. Tacked ship. Ran SSE and S by E. Saw a bark on the other tack probably one of our old friends. Lost sight of her in less than two hours. Hard work to hold our own. High sea and current against us. Found at noon we were in longitude of the Straits, drifting E very much. Today saw a great number of cape pigeons which will probably acompany us round the Cape. Toward night thickened up. Looked as though we were going to have another Southwester. A very heavy sea running.
Went to bed early. Tired of being knocked round. Discouraged. Tired and sick of Cape Horn. Moon quartered in the west. Long spell of head winds and bad weather. Hard to tell how the weather will be an hour before hand. Dare not hardly put sail on her for fear the next gust will take the stick out.
Monday April 2nd
In Lat. 57º 02' Long. 65º 30'. Blew hard till one. Wind hauled NW, but double reef topsails made but little head way till morning. Set more sail and made seven knots. At 12 wind hauled more W. Commenced raining at 3 P.M. and increased to a gale and in less than an hour under close reef main topsails and foresail and the usual storm sails. Blew hard till midnight.
Tuesday April 3rd
In Lat. 57º 50' Long. 66º 51' Commenced with strong breezes and cloudy weather. Wind W at 10 A.M. Wind shifted to SW. Course W. Commenced raining and snowing. Nasty and disagreeable. Made a very good run varying from W by S to NE by N. At 12 o'clock midnight, calm.
Wednesday April 4th
In Lat. 57º 14' Long. 67º 45'. Commenced with strong breeze from S to SW. Course W. Experienced heavy squalls accompanied with hail, snow, and rain. Snow on deck all day . At 9 o'clock set all drawing sails. Calm from 12 to 4 P.M., and then a breeze from the N sprang up. Lasted till 10 and then hauled W. Wind moderated. Commenced raining.
Next week: An Unexpected Trial