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Juno - Galapagos to Marquesas, the start
Juno - Galapagos to Marquesas, the start
06/03/2015

Luna Quest - Friday, March 6th, 2015

Position: 03.22S 93.43WDaily Run: 130 milesDestination: Hiva OAYesterday’s run of 82 miles was understated by some 40 miles as I had not included the effects of the South Equatorial Current. Today’s run is the measured run on the chart, whereas the distance covered through the water since yesterday’s noon position was only 86 miles, although I suspect that our log reader may be somewhat erroneous. The winds seem to be steadier today around 10kn to 11kn and the parasailor is doing an excellent job pulling us along at over 6kn. Early this morning at around 4am the full moon shone brilliantly through the billowing sail and a clear sky promised a day of uninterrupted sunshine. We have rigged up the canopy over the cockpit to shield us from the sun overhead, while the boom is right out to. read more...


06/03/2015

Sweet Pearl - Kap Verden --> Azoren - 2. Tag - Und ab die Post

Gestern haben wir um 17:30 von der Tankstelle in Mindelo abgelegt, nachdem wir den ganzen Nachmittag dort standen, da es keinen Strom hatte und wir nicht tanken konnten. Jetzt segeln wir mit bescheidener Geschwindigkeit die 1250 Seemeilen Richtung Azoren (Ponta Delgada). Wir müssen im Halbkreis Richtung Westen dorthin segeln, da der Wind von quasi Norden kommt. Fritz ist am sich Eingewöhnen und alle sind gut drauf. Gruss, Tom. read more...


06/03/2015

Nexus - Another Great sailing day and night!

We've had nice consistent winds from the NE for the last 24 hours, between 15-25kt true, from the starboard rear quarter, which NEXUS pulls forward to ahead of the beam and runs with a bone in her teeth! We've had double reefed main and gib all day and she's bounding along at 11kts through the water, 9.5kts SOG with an adverse current. It's a bumpy but decent ride, but we are all enjoying the nice sailing. 930nm to go and we're enjoying sailing in company with Alpheratz!Russ and Laurie on NEXUS at 15:00 3/6/15 at 5 38.5'N:47 34.3'W. read more...


06/03/2015

American Spirit II - Day 423; A Slow Start to Genada; Thursday, March 5, 2015

One year ago today:"Day 61; We're Sailing, We're Sailing!; Wednesday, March 5, 2014. Mike was kind enough to let me sleep an extra hour, waking me at 7:00 AM instead of 6:00 AM. As I poked my head into the cockpit at Mike's urging, he pointed out a rainbow on our starboard bow. Nice. First rainbow of our trip. Still raining a little bit. 2,594 miles to go to Hiva Hoa in the Marquesas. Speed 7.4 knots over the ground, 6.0 knots thru the water. A helping current of 1.4 knots. Only one boat near us now, II Audeacious. Wind 9 knots just behind our port beam."*************************************I was first up at 6:20 AM, as Heidi wasn't running this morning with Vlado from Civetta II. Joel is up at 6:40 AM. I write up a list of 'To Do's' that we need to accomplish before leaving Fortaleza.. read more...


06/03/2015

Makena - Pacific Crossing Day 1

05-03-2015 ThursdayNoon Position 02º 48’S 092º 33’WThanks to the World Arc organizers & their agent we had a super easy check out from the Galapagos - we just showed up at a local cafe en masse and they had immigration officers there for us. The islands and the waters around them are really teeming with unusual wildlife… unusual for this Irish woman, at least. Kai is more aware of his surroundings than ever and so he is probably more familiar now with seals, pelicans and marine iguanas than cows, crows or cats! We did some great tours but took it easy every second day since it is just so hot here by 8am. Highlights were definitely the seeing the giant tortoise nursery, seeing penguins and a sea horse in the wild, snorkeling with huge turtles, and the Kicker Rock tour where we. read more...


06/03/2015

Exocet Strike - On our way across the Pacific

Yesterday was the start of the leg from Galapagosto the Marquesas, 3000 nautical miles. We have a start for all the boats, a funracing type start which we have won on two out of three occasions, yesterday wemade it three out of four, nailed it again. then off in a SSW direction to try to get past theregion of squally weather that is in our route. The various forecasts showedthat there might not be too much wind on the first and second days, so we weredelighted with 10 to 12 knots of wind on our beam, ideal conditions. It diget light an confused at one point and we had to motoer for all of 17 mins, thenput up our Code Zero sail, like a huge Genoa, worked perfectly, thanksto the design work of Peter Sanders at Sanders Sails. We have managed to sailmost of today. read more...


05/03/2015

Nexus - Stormy night, fast day!

Last night we were bounding along in good wind and decided to leave the main up all night due to the good progress we were making. Well we sailed into a very large and spread out group of squalls from about 1am to 5am that kept me up pretty much all night. One set of squalls on my watch from 2-4am covered the entire 16nm radius of our radar screen and although they had very little power in them(25kts), the wind swung right around the compass at one point. I was alone and had a preventer rigged, so I couldn't tack. I ended up sailing around 180 with the wind and dousing the main altogether, and ended up motoring in very little wind for a couple of hours of heavy rain, before getting underway again. This morning we had very nice wind but severe choppy seas, which are giving us some fast. read more...


05/03/2015

American Spirit II - Day 422; Last Full Day in Fortaleza; & a Farewell Party and Dinner; Wednesday, March 4, 2015

I woke up again early, at 4:32 AM. Don't know why. Maybe Joel went to the bathroom and the head electric pumps woke me up when he flushed. Heidi is up at 6:00 AM; and at 6:40 AM she takes off with Vlado from Civetta II to go running. Impressive. Joel and I get up at 7:15 AM. Breakfast is at 8:15 AM after morning coffee. Eggs, potato, chilled peach halves and brown bread. One of the refrigerated eggs I crack open is bad. The reason I crack one egg in a bowl by itself is that if I crack it in a bowl with all the other eggs, like I used to do, then one bad egg makes them all bad. When I crack an egg if the yoke is intact the egg is fine. If its not intact, it might be bad. I then give it the smell test. This egg not only had no solid yoke, it looked bad and smelled bad. Adios! This bad. read more...


05/03/2015

Exocet Strike - Left Galapagos!

Well certainly a place to remember. Initially, dueto all the red tape etc I was not looking forward to arriving here, what withall the requirements to have zero hull fouling, to be very environmentally awareetc. The actual outcome was very pleasant, very easy going officials, a greatagent and some great visits. The Kicker Rock visit was heralded as the best oneto do, and it certainly was, the snorkeling was fantastic, even Stella loved it,swimming with sharks, even some hammerhead ones, turtles etc, amazing. Bestisland though was Isabela, very much not developed, whereas the ports of bothSan Cristobal and Santa Cruz are much more developed than one would haveexpected. All told, very enjoyable, and many thanks to Paul Tetlow for hisdeligence in preparing us for the inspection regime and. read more...


05/03/2015

GarliX - Start: 3000nm up to Hiva Oa / Marquesas

Start direction Hiva Oa / Marquesas at 4.march 2015 to??? 18:00 UTC.Well done - GARLIX - Crew!! 10minutes after the start we ripped two sails and we still have 3000nm ahead!! This is an incredible long route!!What happened?… no idea!! We wanted to start with the gennaker. While we hoisted it the sail hose ripped an enormous hole into the sail. Damn…!!! We got it down and hoisted the code zero instead!! A rip was In the code zero too!! Got down the code zero and sailed with the headsail. We were fast with the headsail; after 30 minutes only MAKENA, JUNO und EXOCET STRIKE were in front of us. We were able to repair the code zero and we are now sailing comfortably with 6kn in direction „infinity“. Nearly 1kn is a gift from the current. The gennaker is unfixable on board. So - und jetzt das. read more...


04/03/2015

American Spirit II - Day 421; Final Fueling; Post Office Run; Pool; Laundry; & and Pizza Hut Dinner; Tuesday, March 3, 2015

One year ago today:"Day 59; Sea Lion Sighting; Radio Net; Shark Leaping; Southern Cross & Big Dipper; Monday, March 3, 2014. Sailed all night with engine off. Ran generator 3:00 AM to 7:00 AM to charge batteries. Wind went light so had to start motor sailing at 7:00 AM. Many boats started motor sailing last night at 10:00 PM."********************************Heidi up at 6:00 AM. I got up at 6:30 AM. Vlado from Civetta II next to us and Heidi went running at 6:40 AM. Heidi was back on board at 7:10 AM.Joel got up at 7:10 AM. Breakfast at 8:20 AM: scrambled eggs; cut up and spiced potato; chilled peaches; and brown bread with butter and strawberry jelly. Joel from Rally control conducted the 9:00 AM net, relaying information concerning activities over the next few days. Joel and Johnny. read more...


04/03/2015

Nexus - Sailing again in variable winds

Winds have been up and down, from nothing to 20kts today, we're happy to be sailing, but we've been switching between Asymmetric and the white sails which is work. We were just bobbing along trying to keep the Asymmetric up at 3kts an hour ago, now we have 20kts and we're not able to head to course so we're sailing fast a bit closer to the coast. We'll probably take it down again and switch if the wind doesn't shift back in an hour or so. We've seen a lot of seaweed in the water, which fouls the fishing lines so we've stopped fishing for the moment. At any rate, we're happy to be sailing and to have the boat quiet all day!Russ and Laurie on NEXUS 14:30 3/4/15 at 2 02.3'N:42 12.1'W. read more...


03/03/2015

American Spirit II - Day 420; Two Months Until We're Home; a Liesurly Day in Foraleza; Oil & Filter Change; & Jeanine on Civetta II Cooks Dinner for Us and Civetta; Monday, March 2, 2015

One year ago today:"Day 58; Leaving Galapagos; Sunday, March 2, 2014. Up at 6:00 AM to get ready for meeting with Immigration at 8:00 AM at The Rock restaurant and bar - to have passports and papers stamped to clear out of the country. While sitting in the cockpit having a cup of coffee after sun rise, I watched a marine iguana swim by on its way to the rocky shoreline. A dive boat going out of the anchorage at a high rate of speed missed the iguana by 5 feet, but it didn't bother it in the slightest. It just kept swimming with its head above water."***************************************Two months to go until we're home, on May 2nd!***************************************I woke up at 4:30 AM due to turning over in bed and the pain from my cracked floating rib woke me up. That's right, a. read more...


03/03/2015

American Spirit II - Day 419; Heidi, Joel's Youngest Daughter, Joins Us in Fortaleza, Brazil & We Learn a Very Expensive Dinner Lesson; Sunday, March 1, 2015

One year ago today:"Day 57: Last Provisioning Day & Last Day in Galapagos; Saturday, March 1, 2014. Last day on terra firma before starting the longest leg of the Rally from the Galapagos Islands to Hiva Oa in the Marquesas Islands of French Polynesia. The South Pacific."******************************* Joel got up early today, 5:40 AM, to pick up Heidi at the airport. Heidi was flying in from Miami, Florida via Bogata, Columbia. One of the most dangerous cities in the world? She had a two hour layover there. I got up at 5:51 AM, after setting my alarm the night before for 5:35 AM. However, my alarm didn't go off this morning because the alarm was set to go off only on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday. Who knew?! Joel left at 6:00 AM for the taxi ride to the airport. As soon as he left,. read more...


Ayama - Anna on AYAMA in Galapagos working with her jewerly
Ayama - Anna on AYAMA in Galapagos working with her jewerly
Ayama - Marine Iguana with friend
Ayama - Marine Iguana with friend
03/03/2015

Nexus - Careful what you wish for!

We've had a couple of great days sailing, with variable but good winds and frequent squalls with no power in them. Better and more consistent winds during the day, and variable, rainy winds at night. We're nearing the Amazon area and it's overcast and hazy with lots of moisture in the air. We still have Alpheratz nearby, with Ghost aft and we're slowly overtaking Saphir and Polaris who left the day before. We've been hoping for fish and working the lures hard...but be careful what you wish for. We caught very large Blue Marlin yesterday, who was well and truly hooked and slowed the boat down a bit. It jumped and pulled and sounded for about an hour, and we couldn't budge it closer to the boat. We decided to drag it for a while and waited about 30 minutes before stopping the boat and. read more...


28/02/2015

Nexus - On our way to Grenada...1963nm to go.

We decided to leave early this morning, after spending one more delightful evening with the crews of Ghost and Alpheratz on shore last night we left in their company to sail together. Unfortunately we have no wind today (1.7kts at the moment) but more is in the forecast for the next 10 days, so we're expecting a delightful sail starting late tomorrow or Monday. We spent yesterday afternoon running around the island in our dune buggy, poking in cheesy souvenir shops and buying some last minute provisions, then we all went out to dinner at the restaurant that overlooks our harbor. It was really great. I was walking down the dock toward the dingy with our provisions, and a police car ran down the dock and tooted for my attention. As I walked over to the car, the fellow that hopped out in a. read more...


02/03/2015

Luna Quest - Saturday, 28.2.15

Position:00.45S 90.18WIsla Santa Cruz (Galapagos)Next Destination: Hiva Oa, French PolynesiaThe sail to Santa Cruz was a slow one with little wind. Having left SanCristobal at 7am last Monday, we did not make Puerto Ayora in the Isla ofSanta Cruz until 5pm to cover just 45 miles. There are no marinas in theGalapagos and all boats anchor off the coast and conduct their business onland by using water taxis. Tuesday morning we taxied ashore and booked a3-day trip to Isla Isabela, where we would be treated to the best there isto see in the Galapagos, famous for its unique fauna and flora. Wednesdaymorning at 7am the ferry, propelled by two huge Yamaha outboards, coveredthe 40 miles to Puerto Villamil in Isla Isabela in just two hours. Our firsttour was a walk in an area that is popular with. read more...


02/03/2015

Celebrate - Great All-Day Island-Wide Safari Tour by Henry in Grenada!

Henry's Safari Tours, Kurt, a very nice young man picked us up at the Prickly Bay Marina where they have a sales office and we were joined by a lovely Norwegian couple.First stop was the beautiful Concord Waterfall complete with a young boy who would dive from the cliff-top into the pool made by the waterfall.It was jaw-dropping and we have the pictures to prove it!Continuing along the west coast with picturesque views of the beaches and sailboats going by we stopped at Gouyave to tour a Nutmeg Factory.A three story, mostly hand process of drying the nuts on one level, putting them through a cracking machine on another level and dropping them to the main floor for hand grading and shipping.A tasty buffet lunch was next overlooking the beach at Sauteurs Bay.Close by we saw the famous. read more...


01/03/2015

GarliX - Abschied von Galapagos

Abschied von GalapagosDieses Galapagos - was wir so erlebt haben - ist schon einzigartig; vermissen werden wir diesen ganzen ungewöhnlichen Zoo. Diese lauten Kotz - Würgegeräusche der Seelöwen… diese Geschöpfe, die zum Relaxen wie geschaffen sind. Uns gegenüber in Isabella lagen auf der Untiefentonne immer so einige Tiere, die sich lauthals beschweren, wenn gegen Abend das Licht der Tonne angeht. Diese Geräusche sind ordinär… wie ein stark erkälteter Patient, der kurz vor der Einführung eines Gastroskops vor einer Magenspiegelung ist; aber andauernd. Dabei streicheln sie sich gelassen den Bauch und wälzen sich - immer langsam - hin- und her.Noch niemals haben wir so hautnah so viele Tiere erlebt. Diese Leguane mit der ledrigen Haut von vor 1000 Jahren liegen überall rum; spucken vor sich. read more...


GarliX - Abschied von Galapagos
GarliX - Abschied von Galapagos
01/03/2015

Free & BrEasy - Return to the Equator

Today we will cross the equator, about 120 miles east of the mouth of the Rio Amazonas. We last crossed the equator on the 12th February 2014 on our way out from St Lucia to the Galapagos. It is also the first day of March so, just over a year later, we are well on our way on the return leg to St Lucia. We invited King Neptune and his friends aboard for the first crossing (we have the pictures to prove it!) so in true seamen tradition we shall not be celebrating the second crossing. Well, maybe a tot of rum on the banana flambé!We left Forteleza on the Brazilian coast, just over two days ago on the 1700 mile passage to Tobago. Forteleza was a whistle-stop-stop as we stayed for only 24h to refuel! The Marina was part of an up market hotel with a very nice pool and bar but the marina. read more...


01/03/2015

Nexus - Motorsailing on a nice day

Very light winds still, so we're motorsailing along, hoping to catch some fish. Very nice day with small lumpy seas and a promise of wind tomorrow in the GRIB files. No luck fishing so far, but we're trying! All is well on NEXUS.Russ and Laurie on NEXUS at 12:00 3/1/15 at 2 11.9'S:35 18.2'W. read more...


01/03/2015

American Spirit II - Day 418; I take a Fall Down the Stairs; Provision the Boat; & Have a Last Supper (It IS Lent) with Jeanine for a While; Saturday, February 28, 2015

One year ago today:"Day 56; Diving with White-Tipped Sharks & Eagle Rays; Friday, February 28, 2014. The day started early for me as Russ and Laurie from Nexus had invited me to go scuba diving with them. We met on the dock at 7:00 AM, and on the way to Iguana Scuba we walked by the fish market, where pelicans and two sea lions were gathered around a fisherman filleting fish, looking for scraps. It was actually pretty amazing. One sea lion in particular was favored by this fisherman as he kept flipping him scraps of fish. He was at the feet of the fisherman and looked like a dog would if seated under the dinner table looking for scraps."******************************* Up at 6:45 AM; then coffee with Joel. It starts to rain at 8:21 AM, so we close the hatches and roll up the center. read more...


01/03/2015

American Spirit II - Day 417; We Tie Up at the Most Dangerous Marina We've Seen on Our Trip So Far;;Clearing In is Arduous; and We Spend Our First Full Day in Recife, Brazil; Friday, February 27, 2015

One year ago toad:"Day 55; Mike Settles in & Getting Ready for our Longest Leg; Thursday, February 27, 2014. The sailboat anchored behind us woke us up at 6:30 AM because they thought their bow anchor was under our boat. It wasn't, they pulled it up 10 feet from our transom. This sailboat was not part of our rally but was headed for the Marquesas, where we will be going in 3 days. We'll see them again.**********************************Up at 6:45 AM. Turned on our VHF radio and navigation so that Civetta II could see where we were and call us. I called Civetta II at 7:00 AM and 8:00 AM, but they did not answer my call. Who's on radio watch, Vlado?Breakfast was at 8:15 AM and consisted of bacon; eggs cooked in bacon fat (a Joel favorite); chilled guava; and brown bread...for Joel and. read more...


01/03/2015

American Spirit II - Day 416; We See a Metiorite Almost Crash into the Ground; and We Arrive in Recife, Brazil; Thursday, February 26, 2015

One year ago today:"Day 54; Janet and Darlene Head for Home; Mike Mogavero Arrives; Wednesday, February 26, 2014. Big day today. Darlene Heyne, Joel's wife, left us after being on the boat since January 4. During Darlene's 'stay' she sailed from Tampa to the Dry Tortugas; thru the gale; to Key West; around the western tip of Cuba; past Grand Cayman; thru the treacherous Nicaraguan Sand Banks;to the Sand Blas Islands; to Shelter Bay in Colon, Panama; thru the Panama Canal; to Panama City; to the Las Perlas Islands of Panama; and finally, to the Galapagos, where she visited San Cristobal, Santa Cruz and Isabella Island. With the Caribbean crossing (we think) being the most arduous of our entire trip around the world, Joel and I would have been hard pressed without her. Thank you Darlene!. read more...


28/02/2015

Folie a Deux - A Young Man's First Billfish Landed

You should have seen the gleam in Brian's eyes.The rod and reel where whining as a fish jumped high in the air 50 yards behind the boat.We were sailing at 5 knots from Brazil to the Caribbean, day two of this 11-14 day leg.He has hooked a number of bill fish on the WORLD ARC, landed none.Brian has learned on how to keep them from jumping free.This fish he worked for two hours.As a family, we talked and talked about how we might land it.We called Brian's Fishing mentor and uncle Bradin Pennsylvania for advise.Not having a gun, Brian tried a noose for the tail..... not enough cowboy skills for that to work.He then chose the barbed flying gaff.pulled the fish as high as we could keeping the bill away.It was a perfect swing, catching the fish behind the head. Brian covered the fishes eyes. read more...


28/02/2015

A Plus 2 - Galapagos : le temps du temps

Aux Galapagos, il y a des otaries, des tortues, des iguanes, des requinsmarteaux et des fous à pieds bleus... Mais aussi des marins, en visiteentre Panama et Polynésie, dont la candidature pour un début de tour dumonde a été retenue...De ces animaux marins, on retiendra leur originalité, leur rareté, leurspécificité voire un risque d'extinction prématuré qui permetd'entretenir un suspense finalement assez vendeur.De ces marins, on distinguera deux espèces : l'une passe le temps,l'autre voit le temps passé. Un clivage peut même se révéler dans lafriction entre les deux communautés : n'as-t'on pas entendu : "Un tourdu monde en 15 mois ??! Vous rendez-vous compte ! J'ai 12 ans devant moi!" Le temps tue, c'est bien connu, mais n'est-ce pas criminel de tuer letemps ?. read more...


28/02/2015

Exocet Strike - Isabella island, Galapagos

We are on the move again! Just spent a few days atanchor at Villamil, Isabella Island Galapagos.  Saw lots of smallerSealions, marine Iguanas swimming by the boat and Penguins, really great to seehow fast the Penguins can swim. Did a couple of tours, one around the reef near theanchorage to see where there is an area where the marine iguanas lay their eggs.At this reef we saw about 10 white tip reef sharks, quite big, maybe 6 - 8 feetlong.  Plus turtles, Blue footed Boobys (relative of the Gannet), Penguinsetc, followed by a snorkel trip with the guide, where we saw some reallycolourful reef fish, quite big as well. Plus swam with turtles, saw someBarracuda, and sharks. Great tour. The second one was Frida, an all day tour startingat 0700, first up was the Pink Flamingos, then. read more...


28/02/2015

Firefly - Test Email Logs to follow

Test Email   . read more...


27/02/2015

Nexus - Fernando de Naronha is great! Leaving for Grenada today.

Well, Fernando de Noronha has been a great place to visit. The people are friendly and landscape beautiful, and both are quite a bit more attractive than in Salvador. The island is small but really caters to vacationing tourists. There are no big resorts here, only small guest houses and small restaurants and shops. There is one major road that crosses the island to the airport, the rest of the streets are mostly cobble stone, with emphasis on the "cobble". The beaches are beautiful and very controlled as national parks, and there is a vibrant beach bar establishment as well as a very active surfing community here. At least one major surf competition is held here, and it appears to be a very active pastime for locals and tourists alike. Things are fairly expensive here, which seems to. read more...


Ayama - Marine Iguana with friend
Ayama - Marine Iguana with friend
Ayama - Anna on AYAMA in Galapagos working with her jewerly
Ayama - Anna on AYAMA in Galapagos working with her jewerly
26/02/2015

American Spirit II - Day 415: We Get Slammed by a Sunrise Squall; Wednesday, February 25, 2015

One year ago today:"Day 53; Charles Darwin Breeding Center & Summary of M/V Fragata 5 Day, 4 Night Cruise; Tuesday, February 25, 2014. At 8:00 AM we met our guide on the public dock and walked to the Charles Darwin Breeding Center. Once there we observed giant Tortoises and Land Iguana's; and the home of 'Lonesome George' before he died. George was the last of his species from Pita Island."*****************************************I was lying in bed at 5:40 AM starting to get concerned about the boat motion and sounds when all of the sudden the boat laid over an extra 10-15 degrees and I could hear howling wind and rain beating the fiberglass hull like a thousand marbles were hitting it at the same time. Up the stairs I went to the cockpit in my cotton shorts, followed by Joel in his. read more...


26/02/2015

American Spirit II - Day 414; On our Way to Foraleza on Brazil's North Coast; Tuesday, February 24, 2015

One year ago today:"Day 52; Swimming with White Tipped Sharks & Marine Iguana; Monday, February 24, 2014. Today was our earliest day yet on the M/V Fragata, with breakfast at 6:00 AM."***************************************Up at 6:30 AM. Joel up at 7:30 AM. Fireworks started across from channel at 7:31 AM. Big ones. Mortars with sound only, not colored stuff. A parade or something getting ready to get underway. I can see a lot of busses, but not the people they're dropping off.Breakfast at 8:40 AM: eggs, potato, plums in syrup and brown bread. The plums are not a big hit. I left with Vlado and Lupo form Civetta II to clear out. Took water taxi across channel; and then got into a land taxi. The driver didn't know where the Port Captain's office was, so he had to ask 4 different people. read more...


26/02/2015

Celebrate - Grenada Arrival in Prickly Bay is Friendly!

Kyron & Marvin greeted us with big smiles and cheerfulness at the fuel dock at Prickly Bay Marina and let us stay tied up there until we could clear Immigration & Customs at the head of the dock.Then we hooked up to a mooring buoy as we like the ventilation better than a slip and they assigned us a new buoy.It's been sunny days and a few easy repairs, plus laundry and we are now ready to start seeing Grenada over the weekend.We are really enjoying a more relaxed pace and are looking forward to joining the rest of the fleet at Port Louis in a few weeks.Folie and Merlyn say they might be in on Feb. 12th...Charlie & Cathy. read more...


26/02/2015

Allegro - SEGUNDA-FEIRA 23 DE FEVEREIRO DE 2015 A TERÇA-FEIRA 24 DE FEVEREIRO DE 2015

SEGUNDA-FEIRA 23 DE FEVEREIRO DE 2015Viemos ontem de Puerto Baquerizo Moreno para Puerto Ayora, o centro tecnicamente mais desenvolvido para arranjos, aqui nas Galápagos. É, portanto, o “fim da linha” …Portanto a esperança que depositamos na qualificação e no trabalho do electricista é total (e final …).Tenho que confessar que nunca pensei que esta situação se pusesse pôr. O gerador sempre tem trabalhado bem e o que aconteceu (deixou de haver 220V disponíveis no barco apesar de o gerador continuar a trabalhar normalmente e a produzir 220V (na linha que alimenta o carregador da sua própria bateria eles estão lá os 220V).O resultado é não dispormos de 220V nem para carregar baterias, nem para fazer água, os dois principais utilizadores dos 220V a bordo.Termos então de o fazer através do. read more...


Juno - Crossing the Equator
Juno - Crossing the Equator
25/02/2015

Juno - Crossing the Equator

The equator is a huge heat sink, where warm air perpetually rises, cools and then subsides over the tropics of Cancer and Capricorn, flowing back towards the equator.As this air moves south it is deflected by the Coriolis Force, pushing the wind to the west and creating the trade winds that carry us around the world. Because the equator is farthest from the axis of rotation of the globe, the weather on the equator is benign; air flows from high to low pressure without the ‘spin’ that turns tropical depressions into the dangerous revolving tropical cyclones or Hurricanes, as we know them. Without the help of Google that’s all I know about the equator – except that we crossed it this morning, passing from north to southern hemisphere. Every morning at 9am we hold the daily roll call on the. read more...


24/02/2015

Nexus - Safe Arrival in Fernando de Naronha

What a delightful little island this is, with a great vibe! A little populated tourist destination well off the coast of Brazil, it has a sleepy character, the people are charming, friendly and beautiful, and it reminds me a little of Nuie. We rented a VW dune buggy for three days, which we paid in cash in advance, the owner asked me if I had a license but never asked to see it, showed me how to operate the car and I drove off. He never even knew my name but gave me his card. I love that! The island is dramatic and beautiful, the anchorage is nice but not very sheltered, so it is rolly, which is more of a problem for the mono hulls but not really for us. The water is warm and clear, and we were visited by a large pod of friendly dolphins when we arrived. Unfortunately I had to spend the. read more...


24/02/2015

Ayama - San Cristobal & arriving at Isla Isabella, Galapagos

ThursdayWe had to wait for the various officials to come aboard and give us clearance, immigration, checking various food items, rubbish handling system and the waste water tanks.The divers arrived first to check we hadn’t any growth on the hull; then 6 officials arrived by water taxi.They were very pleasant and polite and there were no complications so we were free to go ashore.The water taxi system is great as we can come and go independently rather than planning with one dinghy.There are sea lions everywhere trying to get onto the back of boats or (if they get on one) just sunbathingand relaxing. The town is quite small and compact so we found the laundry and left all the pile of washing there. It will be bliss to have a clean sheet.Per and I found the local lunchtime cervicheria and. read more...


24/02/2015

Ayama - GALAPAGOS PUERTO BAQUERIZO

Ayama sailed really well with the main and the genoa, flatter seas and southerly winds doing 6-8 knots in 8-12 knot winds.There have been some clouds so it hasn’t been scorching hot; all in all a very pleasant few days.Yesterday we saw a few pilot whales and a booby did a spectacular dive into the water just beside Ayama.They are truly amazing to watch as they suddenly turn, fold their wings and shoot into the water.Exody sailed past us so we took some good photos and hopefully they will have some of Ayama.Exody is a 39ft fibreglass yacht whereas Ayama is a 42ft steel yacht. We sighted land and a large anchored cruise ship.Stefan didn’t want to come into the anchorage until dawn so we slowed down and motored once the wind died just before 3 am.We are now anchored next to Makena, a 62 ft. read more...


24/02/2015

American Spirit II - Day 413; Our Last Full Day in Recife, Brazil; Monday, February 23, 2015

One year ago today:"Day 51; Giant Tortoises; Land Iguanas; & Swimming with Flightless Cormorants; February 23, 2014. Our first event of the day was a hike at Urbina Bay on Isabella Island. Located at the foot of Alcedo volcano. We were transported to the island on the panga's from the M/V Fragata. It was a 'wet landing', meaning that we had to exit the dingy in the surf. We did so on to a steep, volcanic, black sandy beach. Upon exiting the dinghies, we observed an area of green turtle nesting mounds, which was off limits to us. Upon walking on a trail on the island, we came upon the skull of a male sea lion. You could tell it was a male because of the bony ridge at the top of the skull. We then observed a giant tortoise walking down a trail. He stopped and retracted his head and. read more...


23/02/2015

Exocet Strike - Update from Galapagos

Apologies for not sending blogs recently, but Idon't use the Iridium satellite phone when in port, and the wifi in the firstIsland has been pretty poor. The Galapagos seemed like a place full of paperwork and petty officialdom, based on reading pilot books, world ARC books andbriefings, however since arriving and our encounter with officials, who werevery friendly and welcoming, so far it has been the opposite, local restaurantsare very reasonable, cheaper than the UK, and local markets we found have greatlocal fruit and veg. I can believe though that if one is not careful enough withboat preparation etc its possible to be in a whole lot of trouble, thanks toPaul for pushing us to have very clean hulls and be able to have the correctresponses to any environmental questions. The tours we. read more...


23/02/2015

American Spirit II - Day 412; We Tour Recife and Olinda; Sunday, February 22, 2015

One year ago today:"Day 50; Swimming with Sea Turtles & Penguins; Saturday, February 22, 2014. I woke up at 4:00 AM and headed down to the aft section of the main deck, where the restaurant is, to type up Day 49's log. At 5:59 AM we reached our destination and dropped anchor. We were anchored in front of a giant L-shaped cliff face called Vicente Roca Point, part of Isabella Island."************************************Up at 7:00 AM. It rained twice (according to Joel) during the night, so the clothes I hung up on the life lines before going to bed are soaked. Again. Sigi from Merlyn of Poole joins us for coffee and then breakfast at 8:25 AM. We have bacon, scrambled eggs in bacon fat, cut up spiced potato, chilled guava and brown bread. Sigi tells Joel and me a little bit about his. read more...


23/02/2015

Celebrate - Trinidad, Tobago & Grenada Sighting!

Six miles ahead is lushly green Grenada.We have passed Trinidad and Tobago in the night.Our 2500 mile passage is almost at an end and we have sent a fleet message of the conditions we encountered. This morning is sunny skies and great winds for sailing.We are looking forward to landfall after 13 days at sea.Next: Grenada arrival...Charlie & Cathy. read more...


23/02/2015

Exody - Days 41/42/43 - Birthday@Kicker

Swimming with sharks, turtles and eagle rays is a memorable way to spend my birthday on Friday 20th!Opting for the extra hour long visit to nearby Loberia beach we were up early for the water taxi at 06.30.Fernando the guide helped us learn about marine iguanas in and took us for a brief snorkel then it was back to town to join the main trip to Kicker rock- just 12 of us plus baby Kai with Juno and Makena.A high speed 40 minute ride later we were circumnavigating the massive volcanic outcrop and we were soon in the water - like swimming in an aquarium - strange to feel comfortable and safe looking down on 25/30 sharks including two hammerheads, a multitude of other fish, a couple of turtles and closest to us an orderly procession of eagle rays- white spotted.We swam through the narrow 20. read more...


22/02/2015

Free & BrEasy - Start of the End

We are now just over 4 days out of Salvador, on our way to Forteleza, 750 nm up the Brazilian coast from Salvador. We have been motor sailing continuously, using both engines for the first 24 hours, as we bashed our way into strong head winds, and therefore gobbling up our precious diesel. But don't think that life has been dull. The rough conditions induced a certain state of queasiness even in some of us intrepid circumnavigators. We have been so used to being gently coaxed along with light tail winds typical of trade wind sailing in a westward direction that it was a shock to start sailing straight into the gnashers of a north easterly wind. We were also treated to a fantastic sound and light show. For two hours in the dark we motored through a big thunder and lightning storm.. read more...