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22/09/2014

Sweet Pearl - Christmas Island -->Cocos Islands - 4.Tag - Morgen kommen wir an

Nun haben wir genug Wind, fast schon zuviel, aber nur fast;-). Leider schaffen wir es nicht mehr bis heute abend am Ankerplatz zu sein, so dass wir seit gestern langsamer fahren um morgen früh pünktlich nach Sonnenaufgang die Cocos Islands anzulaufen:-). Wir freuen uns alle riesig auf Cocos:-). Cheers, Tom. read more...


21/09/2014

Starblazer - 21/09/2014 – Cruising Vanuatu

We spent 4 days in Port Vila, including buying SIM cards for the Ipads from Digicel.A word of warning for people following in our wake, they might not work!My iIpad is a version 2, three years old though I have downloaded updates to the operating system, and I got 3G coverage, internet etc.John’s is a version 3, two years old, and he could only access Edge, which is the 2G service and was absolutely useless.Once we left Efate to explore the more northern islands only Edge is available, and that doesn’t work, so we have had no internet at all.We left Port Vila in company with Trillium at about noon on Friday. We had bought some duty free spirits and had to wait for Customs to come and seal the bags containing the bottles.We can’t drink it until we clear out of Vanuatu at Luganville where. read more...


Flomaida II - Danke Gaby für die Collage der glücklichen Menschen auf Vanuatu
Flomaida II - Danke Gaby für die Collage der glücklichen Menschen auf Vanuatu
Flomaida II - Bye, bye Ratua Island!
Flomaida II - Bye, bye Ratua Island!
Flomaida II - (M)Ein Träumchen!
Flomaida II - (M)Ein Träumchen!
21/09/2014

American Spirit II - Day 258; Light Air and Some Motoring to Cocos Keeling; Saturday, September 20, 2014

At 3:05 AM Joel and Jeremy put up a low side pole on the starboard side. I got up at 5:30 AM. The wind was 15/16 knots, our speed thru the water was 5.4 knots and over the ground 6.8 knots. A 1.4 knot helping current. Let's hope that current stays all the way to Africa! The wind is almost dead astern. Reason we're going so slow. At 6:50 AM I saw Lluiton on our AIS 4.4 miles astern. I can see their sails as its getting light out now. Sweet Pearl is also behind us not too far away, but their AIS is intermittent so I can't see exactly where they are.Sunrise at 7:01 AM Bali Start Time (6:01 AM locally). The sun was already 5 degrees above the horizon when I noticed it. Clouds obstructed it until then. I put one fishing line in the water at 7:05 AM. Nothing ventured, nothing gained.At 8:09 AM. read more...


Flomaida II - (M)Ein Träumchen!
Flomaida II - (M)Ein Träumchen!
Flomaida II - !!!!
Flomaida II - !!!!
Flomaida II - Der Blick von meinem Lieblingsankerplatz
Flomaida II - Der Blick von meinem Lieblingsankerplatz
Flomaida II - Ein traumhaftes Schnorchelrevier
Flomaida II - Ein traumhaftes Schnorchelrevier
Flomaida II - Ein blauer Seestern?
Flomaida II - Ein blauer Seestern?
21/09/2014

Nexus - 150 Miles to go to Cocos (Keeling) Islands

After a light wind nite of motor sailing, the wind returned with a squall early this morning so we're back on the white sails again! We've got the main double reefed and the headsail single reefed to try to slow the boat down for a mid morning arrival as the entrance to Cocos is somewhat tricky and we would like to have high sun to see the reefs.It's a pleasant day with isolated showers and 18kts on the port rear quarter making good sailing. It's getting a bit lumpy as the wind builds the waves. We de-rigged and stowed the code zero this morning and we'll keep the double reef in the main, just in case the forecast heavy weather materializes later this afternoon. We have two fishing lines out after hearing that Alpharatz caught a nice Mahi Mahi in the neighborhood, but so far no joy.. read more...


20/09/2014

Nexus - Half way to Cocos (Keeling) Island

After a fast start with good winds and a swift close hauled run for the first day, we're now bobbing along in 8kts from the stern. It's been a hot day, we've seen one large Indonesian fishing boat so far but no other traffic than the boats we're traveling in company with; Ghost, Alpheratz, Festina Lente and NDS Darwin.We put one motor on about two hours ago to charge the batteries and move us along a bit, while we wait for the wind to return. The forecast has the wind picking up again this evening, and unfortunately, we have heavy weather forecast for tomorrow afternoon as a large cold front will meet us around Cocos, so we'll batten down the hatches!We're looking forward to Cocos, as it is a beautiful atoll of three islands and has been written about by other cruisers as a highlight of. read more...


20/09/2014

American Spirit II - Day 257; Leaving Christmas for Cocos Keeling 530 Miles Away; Friday, September 19, 2014

Up at 6:00 AM due to violent rocking and bumping of the boat. We're still rafted up to Nexus. Went back to sleep and got out of bed at 7:30 AM. At 8:45 AM I took Jeremy to shore in the dingy to meet with Paul, the gas station owner who is going to fill our 3 jerry cans with diesel. Each can hold 5.3 gallons or 20 liters. The cost per liter is $2.40 AUD, or about $10.00 per gallon for diesel. Expensive. At 9:15 AM we untied from Nexus and Nexus from Ghost and both departed for Cocos Keeling. We then grabbed on to the mooring buoy. Because a reef is 50 yards behind us Joel put two lines on the mooring buoy instead of one. If we drift off the buoy into the reef and then the cliff face, the boat will be lost. Jeremy called me on the radio for a pick up at 9:30 AM and I took the dingy. read more...


20/09/2014

Free & BrEasy - Happy Christmas Island

Just four days after waving goodbye to Annabelle, Nieves and Raqel as we left Benoa Marina, Bali, we were arriving in the early morning at Christmas Island. This is remote tropical island which is Australian Territory lying to the south of Java in the Indian Ocean. The 585 mile passage was split into two parts; the boring windless bit which we motored, and the more interesting windy bit during which our focus during the watches was almost entirely fixed on the auto helm which kept on disengaging. Even reefing the main sail to balance the boat did not entirely stop the problem. During the nights we passed through fishing fleets which used green, blue and red strobe lights as navigation lights. Novel but effective!Our first view of Flying Fish Cove, X-Mas Island was very inauspicious. The. read more...


20/09/2014

Sweet Pearl - Christmas Island -->Cocos Islands - 2.Tag - Und wieder weiter

Nach 36 sehr schönen Stunden auf Christmas Island, wo es uns sehr gut gefallen hat, auch wenn man dort nicht sein ganzes Leben verbringen möchte (da es dann doch zu langweilig ist), sind wir wieder aufgebrochen nach Cocos (Keeling) Islands (530 Seemeilen entfernt, d.h. 3-4 Tage auf See).Bis jetzt gings ganz flott voran, wenn der Wind auch jetzt gerade etwas nachlässt. Der soll aber bald wiederkommen, und wir warten solangs auf ihn:-).Kartoffelgratin mit Speck und Käse steht heute auf dem Menü, nachdem wir gestern leckere Burger hatten. Sie lassen es sich also gut gehen - ja, so ist es.:-)Cheers, Tom. read more...


20/09/2014

Celebrate - Sharks!!!! Port Refuge on Direction Island at Cocos (Keeling)

At about 7.00AM local time we have arrived safely in Cocos Keeling. The wind died as we made our approach and in clear daylight we could pick up the leading navigation marks. We followed the waypoints of a previous World ARC participant which got us in to anchorage without a problemalthough at one point there was no more than a foot under the keel! We dropped anchor at the stunning Port Refuge anchorage complete with a welcoming committee of 3 black tip sharks swimming around just off the boat. They seemed to like the flying fish we collected overnight (hope they don't like us too much). here is beautiful turquoise water, palm trees and a sandy beach add to thescene! We have to wait on board till this afternoon for Australian Customs to clear us, so time for a welcoming beer andthen we. read more...


20/09/2014

Folie a Deux - Food Faux Pas and Provisioning

What is a food faux pas?It is when you purchase foods expecting them to be one thing, and they are not.Case in point, yesterday I pulled rolls out of the freezer ready to make sandwiches for lunch.They looked just like dinner rolls you would buy at home to make sliders (mini sandwiches).I sliced them open, and to my surprise they were filled with sweet treats, like chocolate, raisin type paste, and a sweet cheese filling.Unfortunately, only 2 had cheese filling which were used to make 2 small sandwiches.The raisin paste stuff did not work as a sandwich roll, Brian ate the middle and threw those overboard.Lucy was happy to eat the chocolate filled ones since she does not like sandwiches, and chocolate is a food group in her book.It brought me back to my biggest food shopping faux pas….the. read more...


20/09/2014

Firefly - The New Hebrides

Up until independence in 1980, Vanuatu was called the New Hebrides. This name seemed a little strange until Friday when it was cloudy all day and rained for several hours - during this time it did look very similar to Bonny Scotland, but to us, more the mainland of the Western Isles area as opposed to the Inner or Outer Hebrides. Aneityum Island is mountainous and the vegetation is quite lush, green and does consist of a good proportion of coniferous trees.We arrived just before midday on Thursday 18th having sailed the whole route from Fiji apart from a 7 hour stretch of motoring between 1600 and 2300 the day before - fortunately the wind came back enough to make it very pleasant sailing on the last night of the passage - with about 12 to 14 knots of wind we were managing to run goose. read more...


Flomaida II - Wer begrüßt uns am Morgen? Eine Schildkröte!
Flomaida II - Wer begrüßt uns am Morgen? Eine Schildkröte!
Flomaida II - Eines der wenigen Resorts- versteckt und der Natur angepasst
Flomaida II - Eines der wenigen Resorts- versteckt und der Natur angepasst
Flomaida II - Welche Frucht ist das?
Flomaida II - Welche Frucht ist das?
Flomaida II - Kristallklares Wasser
Flomaida II - Kristallklares Wasser
Flomaida II - "Blue Hole"- ein Süßwasserpool am Ende des Flusses
Flomaida II -
Flomaida II - Der unglaubliche Weg zum "Blue Hole"
Flomaida II - Der unglaubliche Weg zum
Flomaida II - Korallen vom Feinsten
Flomaida II - Korallen vom Feinsten
Flomaida II - Welchen Pareo suchen die Herren aus??Oder besprechen sie das nächste Wetterfenster??
Flomaida II - Welchen Pareo suchen die Herren aus??Oder besprechen sie das nächste Wetterfenster??
Flomaida II - Christoph und Paul können es kaum glauben, wie transparent das Wasser ist
Flomaida II - Christoph und Paul können es kaum glauben, wie transparent das Wasser ist
Flomaida II - Sarah mit Töchterchen Sheila,die Pareos von Hand bemalt und kreativen Schmuck herstellt
Flomaida II - Sarah mit Töchterchen Sheila,die Pareos von Hand bemalt und kreativen Schmuck herstellt
Flomaida II - Besser geht es nicht!
Flomaida II - Besser geht es nicht!
Flomaida II - Champagne beach
Flomaida II - Champagne beach
Flomaida II - Ein Pouletfisch, also ein Hühnchenfisch, der sehr zart mehr nach Huhn als nach Fisch schmeckt
Flomaida II - Ein Pouletfisch, also ein Hühnchenfisch, der sehr zart mehr nach Huhn als nach Fisch schmeckt
Flomaida II - Wunderschöne und gesunde Korallenwelt in Walaboua Point vor Aese/ Espirito Santo
Flomaida II - Wunderschöne und gesunde Korallenwelt in Walaboua Point vor Aese/ Espirito Santo
Flomaida II - Das Schönste, was ich bisher gesehen habe! www.ratua.com
Flomaida II - Das Schönste, was ich bisher gesehen habe! www.ratua.com
Flomaida II - Mal wieder ohne Worte!
Flomaida II - Mal wieder ohne Worte!
Flomaida II - Im Salat lässt sich's gut träumen!
Flomaida II - Im Salat lässt sich's gut träumen!
Flomaida II - Ohne Worte!
Flomaida II - Ohne Worte!
Flomaida II - Flomaida mal wieder im Paradies!!
Flomaida II - Flomaida mal wieder im Paradies!!
Flomaida II - Ein echter Gemischtwarenladen-wie früher bei uns
Flomaida II - Ein echter Gemischtwarenladen-wie früher bei uns
Flomaida II - Hier gibt es keinen gesüßten Tee aus der Flasche. Die Cocosnuss wird so zugeschnitten, dass es sich gut daraus nuckeln lässt. Und gesünder ist es auch noch.
Flomaida II - Hier gibt es keinen gesüßten Tee aus der Flasche. Die Cocosnuss wird so zugeschnitten, dass es sich gut daraus nuckeln lässt. Und gesünder ist es auch noch.
American Spirit II - The famous red crab that marches to the sea to mate in mass
American Spirit II - The famous red crab that marches to the sea to mate in mass
American Spirit II - Rober crabs on Christmas Island
American Spirit II - Rober crabs on Christmas Island
American Spirit II - West side if Christmas Island
American Spirit II - West side if Christmas Island
American Spirit II - Blow holes on Christmas Island
American Spirit II - Blow holes on Christmas Island
American Spirit II - Mama feeding her baby
American Spirit II - Mama feeding her baby
American Spirit II - Christmas Island ancorage view with new crew Jeremy
American Spirit II - Christmas Island ancorage view with new crew Jeremy
American Spirit II - Kids what can you do with them
American Spirit II - Kids what can you do with them
American Spirit II - Bali Elephant Safari Rescue Park
American Spirit II - Bali Elephant  Safari Rescue Park
19/09/2014

Celebrate - Approaching Cocos Keeling

Well the blessing and offerings made in Bali are still working! The wind is blowing at 18 knots from the right direction. At our current speed we should be approaching the atoll just after dawn tomorrow. We are heading for the Southern group of islands and plan to anchor within the lagoon in the lee of Direction Island. Cocos is an Australian Dependant Territory, the inhabitants are a mixture of Australian and Malay origin, the former living on West Island and the latter on Home Island nearby our anchorage. All the islands are a ferry ride apart and with a lagoon full of shallow spots,once anchored we will not be moving for a week.Flying fish are continuing to throw themselves at us:Charlie picked up twelve on this morning's walk/ rig check. No luck with fishing yet but the line snapped. read more...


19/09/2014

American Spirit II - Day 256; The History of Christmas Island, a Tour and a BBQ on Christmas Island; Thursday, September 18, 2014

Up at 6:30 AM, coffee then dingied into shore for an 8:00 AM clearing in with Quarantine, Customs and Immigration officials. Christmas Island is part of Australia, so the same very critical review we've received elsewhere in Australia still applies. Breakfast at 7:00 AM - bacon, eggs, chilled mandarin orange slices and bread.We got the dingy from the V-Berth and filled its 4 air compartments using an electric pump. After attaching the seat and two oars, we put it into the water, then added the electric outboard shaft, followed by the lithium battery, handset control mechanism, red plastic piece to secure the battery to the shaft and finally a magnetic key so we could turn on the motor. At 7:50 AM we dingied into shore and were ready for our clearing in at 8:00 AM. The Quarantine official. read more...