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Flomaida II - Schnorcheln mit den Haien!
Flomaida II - Schnorcheln mit den Haien!
Flomaida II - Ziemlich frech! Er und ich!
Flomaida II - Ziemlich frech! Er und ich!
Flomaida II - Hammerhai
Flomaida II - Hammerhai
Flomaida II - Der ganz "normale" Hai
Flomaida II - Der ganz
Flomaida II - 3 Eagle Ray beim Schnorcheln
Flomaida II - 3 Eagle Ray beim Schnorcheln
Flomaida II - Stille Beobachter
Flomaida II - Stille Beobachter
Flomaida II - Christoph mit Panamahut beim Putzen
Flomaida II - Christoph mit Panamahut beim Putzen
15/02/2014

Starblazer - 14-02-2014. Galapagos

We arrived at about 0930 Panama time on Thursday morning, 0830 Galapagos time, then had to wait for our 'environmental hazard inspection' . This involved 8 people coming on board plus a diver taking photos of the underwater area.We passed the internal inspection which included asking about our procedures for dealing with rubbish, maintenance, oil spills etc.Unfortunately we learned today that we failed the underwater inspection, along with many other boats.Something is adhering to our hull which is deemed a risk to the Galapagos, most infuriating given we had a lift out and scrub off in St Lucia two days before we left in January.Rally Control has worked hard to find a solution.We will sail if there is any wind (motor if we have enough fuel) around the island to an agreed position 40. read more...


15/02/2014

American Spirit II - Day 43; Janet Fox Arrives!; Saturday, February 15, 2014

Up early. Another sea lion on the boat transom. He jumped off once he heard me afoot. Left for the airport at 9:00 AM to meet Janet's plane from mainland Ecuador. She had been traveling since 3:30 PM the day before and had spent Thursday night in the airport in Guayahill (a city on the coast. I know the spelling is wrong). In texting Janet, she indicated that she was in queuing hell, and didn't know if she'd get done in time to make the flight. If you've never stood in lines in South American airports, you haven't lived! Her plane touched down close to on time, and then Janet was back in a que again. In order to make sure that Janet didn't miss me at the airport exit, I held a sign that said 'Janet Fox.' When in Rome... And I use the term 'airport exit' loosely. Its a set of double doors. read more...


14/02/2014

Celebrate - Log Day 33 - Sea Lions Galore at San Cristobal, Galapagos

The sound of barking sea lions filled our ears as we anchored in pretty Puerto Baquerizo at the Island of San Cristobal. Soon with an extravaganza of Spanish speaking officials and two wonderful World ARC agents translating, Ricardo & Yvonne, plus divers to examine our boat's hull we were cleared into Ecuadorian Galapagos in short order. A waiting water taxi took us into shore and we walked to the charming Miconia Hotel's upstairs open-air restaurant complete with beautiful bay view for a Rally "happy hour". After two Cuba Libre's and an outstanding dinner of mixed seafood barbecue "doubled" on our table grill we really felt "happy".In the twinkle of anchor lights and the glow of shore lights we arrived back at CELEBRATE in what looked like a fairy land. What a great day!CathyNext,. read more...


14/02/2014

American Spirit II - Day 42; Valentine's Day & Swimming with Turtles; Friday, February 14, 2014

Up at 5:30 AM. Sea lion still on transom. Looked up at me. Luckily we had blocked access to the cockpit with a recliner, or this sea lioncould have ended up in our cockpit. That would have been challenging to get rid of him then. About 10:00 AM we boarded a water taxi into town, then walked a mile or so to an 'interpretation' center, where the history of the Galapagos was adequately explained by pictures and wall charts. After that we made our way to a beach, where we snorkeled. The underwater topography was rocky with many fish. The water temperature was 82 degrees. While snorkeling, we came upon 2 large turtles, one with a 4 foot in diameter shell and another 2 1/2 feet. The larger turtle stopped me from following him by turning around and forcing me to retreat. Later we observed him. read more...


14/02/2014

Hebe - Galapagos Euphoria

Thursday 13th February 201400:49:13S89:34:51WCrossed the Equator in style ….watching the latitude go to 00:00:00N/S was such a thrill, we toasted the sea with rum, gave thanks for our safe arrival and asked God to bless our families and loved ones. We gave the sea a polished pebble with PEACE engraved and a shell, the rest was a hoot, see below, Andrew is Poseidon and Harry his wife……..P1050097 P1050113 P1050140. P1050127 2 P1050131. read more...


Hebe - Galapagos Euphoria
Hebe - Galapagos Euphoria
Hebe - Galapagos Euphoria
Hebe - Galapagos Euphoria
Hebe - Galapagos Euphoria
Hebe - Galapagos Euphoria
Hebe - Galapagos Euphoria
Hebe - Galapagos Euphoria
Hebe - Galapagos Euphoria
Hebe - Galapagos Euphoria
14/02/2014

Skyelark of London - Feb 13

Feb 13I am not a blogger, nor a sailor, yet here I am writing a blog and making my first blue water passage from Panama to the Galapagos Islands.I am from Alaska - the interior of Alaska - 350 miles from the coast. And although I have been to sailing school, done short sails in New Zealand, Alaska and Washington, bareboat chartered in the BVIs, even raced out of the Honolulu Yacht club (my former neighbor was the commodore at the time) nothing prepared me for the wonders of this trip."Light my Bowl" is the name I call my first night time discovery. I had the 1 a.m. watch. So in the dark I stealthily made it to the head, hoping not to wake my fellow crew. Keeping lights off, I pumped the toilet clear using sea water. To my absolute delight, the electric green phosphorescence lit up. read more...


13/02/2014

Celebrate - Log Day 32 - Big Moon Nights, Sunny Days and the Equator of Leg 2!

"Some of the most perfect sailing we will ever see", Charlie says, as we left Las Perlas to start Leg 2 of the Rally and head for the Galapagos. It's always fun to see our colorful Gennaker flying.The Rally boats were all taking photos of each other and we have pictures of Skyelark of London, Festina Lente and Nexus.After a few days the wind left us and we had to start the engine and put the whisker pole out on the Genoa.On 2/9 we were sailing with Firefly, Clementina, Flomaida and Lluiton.Crossing the Equator was such a life highlight on Tuesday afternoon, 2/11, and was celebrated with a special bottle of champagne from our friends Jay & Laurie Ailworth and of course we ate Charlie's favorite brie cheese.Speaking of brie cheese, such great food was prepared by our crew member, Randy. read more...


13/02/2014

American Spirit II - Day 41; Arrival at San Cristobal Island in the Galapagos; Thursday, February 13, 2014

At 12:44 AM we passed a gigantic rock called Roca Pateadora. 'Roca' means rock. By gigantic, I mean the size of giant asteroid a couple of hundred feet tall. If it was a 'small' rock, it wouldn't have been given a name. We've actually seen and been on islands that were smaller than this roca. Our electronic chart plotter had us in a depth of over 600 feet and 2 miles off shore from this rock. We were quite surprised, then, when our depth meter registered 49 feet. Bummer! We made a course change of 20 degrees,putting us further away from 'the rock.' If the depth had been 4 feet instead of 49, we'd have hit the underwater rocks (we draw a little over 5 feet), and we would have damaged the boat. If unlucky, we could have holed the boat and sunk. Now we were really awake! Kind of like how. read more...


13/02/2014

Starblazer - 13/02/2014 – Southern hemisphere.

We crossed the equator at 1935 local and duly appeased Neptune with a shareof our steak and chips and syrup pudding, champagne and a drip of whisky.To be honest, we’d finished dinner a bit earlier so Neptune’s very smallshare was cold! We had also altered course a little to ensure we crossedbefore I went off watch at 2000.Out ETA in Wreck Bay, not an auspiciousname, is about 0930 depending on the current.We are unashamedlymotorsailing because the wind is too weak and still not quite in the rightdirection.Our motoring hours are unimportant, except for the cost ofrefuelling, because we are not competing on this leg.We will be listed asDNS (Did Not Start) because we were still anchored in La Playita when therally left Contadora in the Las Perlas Islands.Our earlier than anticipated arrival. read more...


13/02/2014

Sweet Pearl - Las Perlas --> Galapagos - 7. Tag - Äquator

Heute wird es soweit sein - wir werden den Äquator überqueren. Das ganze Schiff wurde instruiert: egal ob männlich oder weiblich, ob gross oder klein, ob jung oder alt, ob beim Schlafen oder beim Essen, jeder muss verkleidet antreten wenn wir die Grenze zwischen Nordhalbkugel und Südhalbkugel überschreiten. Dieser Moment wird natürlich festgehalten - Foto folgt:-). Wir freuen uns alle auf Galapagos mit seiner grossen Tierwelt, das wir - nach Anpassung unserer Geschwindigkeit - nach Sonnenaufgang morgen (14. Februar) erreichen sollten. Erstes Ziel ist die Insel San Cristobal, wo wir in der Bucht vor dem Hafen Puerto Baquerizo ankern und einklarieren. Das Einklariern wird dann unser erstes grosses Erlebnis - anscheinend werden uns um die zehn Personen von verschiedenen Instanzen,. read more...


13/02/2014

Firefly - Into the Southern Hemisphere

Just after 8AM local time on Wednesday, Neptune's wife, looking very fetching in her pink silk komono, face mask and floppy hat (Paul dressed up ) rose from the depths (well the cabin) complete with a trident (made from a boat hook) and welcomed us across the Equator. We gave offerings to Neptune and the sea - a glass of bubbly and home made carrot cake and we crossed safely to the Southern Hemisphere. The crew consumed the rest of the bubbly kindly given to us by the team on Celebrate and had quite a jolly party. It proved difficult to get back into the watch system after all this excitement. We are now at anchor on Isla San Cristobal with the sea lions swimming around the back of Firefly.On the way in we were followed by a shark a little distance and saw a whale breach and a huge ray. read more...


13/02/2014

Trillium - Trillium Has Crossed the Equator!

We celebrated the crossing into the southern hemisphere late this afternoon (Wednesday) with champagne and a photo session. It was great to finally reach the 00.00 reading on the chart plotter! We have had many wonderful days of sailing with steady winds and only motoring a few times when the wind was too low or in the wrong direction. Trillium needs at least 10 kts to start moving and loves to fly at 20-30 kts. The Pacific has been passive so far and provided a great experience for our son, Nick, who is sailing for the first time. Other than sail changes, the crew has not been overworked!Last night we had another night of shouting in Spanish - somewhat like the night in the Panama Canal. It seems we ventured in the dark into the range of a fishing boat with the 2 mile long lines out. He. read more...


12/02/2014

Starblazer - 12/02/2014 – Wishes come true

In yesterday’s log we were wishing for either a wind shift or less wind so we could sensibly motor, we got both with unwanted additions!Almost exactly 24 hours after turning the engine off the wind died, we could make only about 3 knots and the current was having an increased effect, pushing us further north.We rolled away the genoa, put the engine on, then altered course to try to get further south.Within 30 minutes the wind backed 90 degrees and piped up to 20 knots.That should have made great sailing in the right direction but now we come to the ‘unwanted extras’.The wind was under the leading edge of a squall system which had sneaked up on us.The wind soon died but alas the squall system hung around for about 4 hours! The radar showed us in the centre of a 12 mile diameter circle of. read more...


12/02/2014

American Spirit II - Day 40; Crossing the Equator; Wednesday, February 12, 2014

At 3:45 AM this morning, during Darlene's 3:00 AM - 6:00 AM watch, we came upon some fishermen who had laid miles of nets almost in front of us. A fishing skiff, one of 6 that the 'mother ship' had been pulling behind her(we'd seen them earlier in the day whey they crossed under our stern), rushed us and the crew members on board starting shouting at us in Spanish. They drove their boat toward us and 'herded' us away from their nets. Fifteen minutes later we we near a flashing light, which was the corner or end of their net. This flashing light was a buoy that they had placed to mark the southeast corner of their nets. Once there, they stopped escorting us and we got back on course toward Galapagos. We only lost 15 minutes in the diversion. Another boat, Trillium, we found out later,. read more...


12/02/2014

Celebrate - Log Day 17- Lovely Las Perlas!

Leaving our perfect Panama City memories behind us, including Davide of the World Rally as he returns to his homeland of Sardinia, we sail on to the lovely Las Perlas Islands.What a spectacular sight of 30 plus World Rally boats anchored in front of a beautiful beach at Contadora Island, part of the Las Perlas Islands.In the background, the pretty Villa Hotel Romantica, aptly named with circular patios for the restaurant and bar hanging out over the beach cliff.Between the rendezvous and barbecue our nights were filled with laughter and good times as we prepared to start Leg 2 of the Rally going to the Galapagos.Cheers to Paul, Suzana and Joel for making our stay go so smoothly!CathyNext, the equator and memories of Leg 2.. read more...


12/02/2014

Flomaida II - Äquatortaufe

Auf dem Foto sieht man, dass wir gerade den Äquator "überschwommen" haben.Bei uns ist es jetzt 1 Uhr nachts. Neptun hat auch ein Schlückchen Bier bekommen- hatten Beide keine Lust auf edlere Sachen-, und vorn auf der Reling leistet uns noch ein großer, weißer Vogel Gesellschaft, allerdings schläft er mit dem Kopf zwischen den Federn. Erstaunlich, dass er instinktiv ausbalanciert.Falls er zum Frühstück bleibt, gibt es ein Foto.Gestern war ein Tag zum Abhaken, bis auf dass nichts kaputt ging- oder doch? Wir mussten den ganzen Tag motoren,weil sich kein Lüftchen rührte, und das Wasser aussah wie Flüssigblei.Heute dagegen war ein Traumtag zum Segeln: Wind aus der richtigen Richtung mit 20 Knoten und kaum Welle, so dass wir teilweise 9 Knoten fahren konnten-alle Segel waren gesetzt.Beim. read more...


Flomaida II - Äquatortaufe
Flomaida II - Äquatortaufe
12/02/2014

Nexus - Galapagos!

Nexus crossed the finish line at 18:29 in San Cristobal, Galapagos (or Archipelago de Colon as Ecuador has named them), and we are safely anchored in the harbor under quarantine until tomorrow morning. We had a beautiful sail here and are glad to be on the hook. We've prepared our defenses at the back of the boat to avoid becoming a sea lion hotel as we sleep and we've already been looked over by two prospective tenants. We will be visited by a boat full of officials first thing in the morning to check us in. We had an interesting night sail, Russ was on the 2-4am watch, and after negotiating a crossing with a freighter, noticed a dim red light on the water ahead of the boat. Since it was only a red light, he was thinking sailboat tricolor and couldn't work out how far away it was. Then. read more...


11/02/2014

Firefly - Not so lucky lure this time

Just as Peter started writing this log, a cry of 'fish' came from Susie in the cockpit; we had a hooked a 4 feet long Marlin, it jumped four times in the air; and then it was gone, the 100lb breaking strain line had snapped and the lucky lure gone with it. We are very sad about the suffering we have probably inflicted on the fish. We hope it somehow manages to spit out our tackle. The pink squid look alike had a great track record; set twice, time in the water about 20 minutes, two fish hooked one landed! On reflection we are not sure how we would have coped with a big fish in the cockpit and much more than one supper for three. We are now looking forward to sausages for tea.There are just over 100 n.miles to go to the Equator and around 175 to San Cristobal Island. The bubbly is in the. read more...


11/02/2014

American Spirit II - Day 39; Closing on Galapagos; Tuesday, February 11, 2014

At 5:00 AM a loud alarm sounded on the boat. The alarm was a "Position Lost" alarm. Even though we have a plethora of satellites tracking us and giving us our GPS position, this anomaly keeps popping up every few days. Aggravating when its in the middle of the night. My 'sleeping' hours are 12:00 AM - 6:00 AM, so losing an hour of sleep is costly.On watch at 6:00 AM. Cloudy, wind 14 knots on port bow. Boat speed 6.3 knots. Motor sailing. If or when the wind goes more east, then we can sail. Being in the Doldrums, we keep getting rain showers passing by. No direct hits yet, though. All of us on board are 'bone tire.' Because of this, I called Saphire and advised them that we would not be participating in the 9:00 AM Radio Net with the other boats today. A large Ecuadorian fishing boat,. read more...


11/02/2014

Skyelark of London - Feb 10 -11th

Feb 10We started the day with a sausage and cheese frittata, a Skyelark staple under passage and a nice filling breakfast. Clouds have moved in for the first time, while they do help to lessen the heat of the near equatorial sun it also brought short periods of rain. The winds remain on the nose so we continue to motor towards our long dreamed of destination. We had a beautiful sunset, the sea flat as a mill pond extenuated the rose hue upon the small ripples from the light breeze. For the first time since starting this leg we saw some flying fish hopefully a sign that larger predators are lurking about and the possibility of another fresh fish dinner.Feb 11At 0330 the winds finally picked up and we were able to sail again, not as pleasant for sleeping but this boat was not designed to. read more...


11/02/2014

Hebe - Day 5 Beating to Galapagos.

Tuesday 11th February 201400:21:89N88:08:40WWould you believe it we're cranking along rail in the water battling against a current that doesn't want us to go to the Galapagos.  With these guys on board plus Captain Birdseye Andrew we're working like an Americas Cup boat, constant tweaking of sails watching our SOG (speed) COG (Where we're going) BOG (pongs) then there's much discussion over our VMG (Sorry I haven't a clue) not to mention XTE, DTW and ETA (tomorrow)We've crossed the ITCZ (Doldrums) AS a result of all this  we've got Alpharatz biting our ankles for a photo finish. All good stuff and nice to be out of the Doldrums and using white sails instead of all those hair raising spinnakers. We've had a wonderful moon so brilliant, 2 nights running it lit up a lovely. read more...


Hebe - Day 5 Beating to Galapagos.
Hebe - Day 5 Beating to Galapagos.
11/02/2014

Starblazer - 11/02/2014 – Heading west

From our start in St Lucia all our track is westbound, with a southerly component, so our heading towards the Galapagos is just a little west of south west.Unfortunately the current is conspiring to send us close to west!Let me explain.We point the yacht where we want to go, so long as the wind permits, and make best speed through the water.The water isn’t a stationary object like a road, it has currents which move at varying speeds in varying directions so it carries the boat on a different course at a different speed.The yacht’s log tells us speed through the water and the compass gives us the heading, the wonderful GPS(who remembers Decca, Loran or even Radio Direction Finders?) tells us the course and speed we are making over the ground.The weather forecasters say there is about 1. read more...


11/02/2014

Sweet Pearl - Las Perlas --> Galapagos - 5. Tag - Richtung Westen

Es hat sich gelohnt in den Süden zu fahren - wir haben wieder Wind von ca. 15 Knoten. Nur die Richtung ist mit SW nicht Idealste - aber wir schaukeln das Schiff schon (eindeutig, zweideutig). Der Alltag ist eingekehrt und wir lesen, schlafen, essen, plaudern und relaxen. Morgen oder spätestens übermorgen überqueren wir dann den Äquator und dann heisst es auf der Südhalbkugel auf den Händen laufen - wir sind bereits mächtig am Üben;-). Tom. read more...


11/02/2014

Free & BrEasy - Peaceful Pacific

Today, it's 31 days since we left St Lucia. One month of living the dream on board Free and Br"Easy". A quick health check up of the crew reveals that there is no scurvey, signs of teeth /hair dropping out (more than usual),sailors foot (or is it armpit?) or any other ocean diseases. Captain (Ahab) Stokes is being nice to his crew and his crew have not mutinied (yet but this is always an option). In short dear reader, we are happy! Steadily eating our way through a mountain of oranges, water melon, pineapples and in constant fear that the green, green bananas will ripen all at once. There are rumours that we can't take any fruit into the Galapagos and will have to pig out on fruit or throw it all overboard!Despite there be nothing to do but sail and eat we are all surprisingly busy. The. read more...


10/02/2014

American Spirit II - Day 38; Joel Saves Big Bird!; Monday, February 10, 2014

Not mentioned on the day's previous log because I sent it in early, was at 5:15 PM Sunday a large white bird, with black and white wings,a long neck and orange beak; along with a 3 - 4 foot wingspan, made a pass over our 2 fishing lines and his left wing got caught in one of the lines. Not the hook, just the line. He went down like a Nazi ME 109 during the Battle of Britain in the English Channel. Splash! As Joel Heyne donned 2 fishing type gloves, I reeled him in. He just sat in the water trying to swim under water and get away. We stopped the boat and turned the motor off. After what seemed like forever of reeling him in, the bird made it to our transom and looked up at Joel, who pounced with lightning speed, grabbing the bird's long beak with his left hand. He never knew what grabbed. read more...


10/02/2014

Firefly - Chugging along

We have been making great progress towards Galapagos, albeit using the engine to motor sail for about 40 hours since the wind shut down. On Monday morning we managed to start sailing again and had several hours close hauled beating achieving a reasonable speed despite heading into some waves. The current remains reasonably favorable running at about 1.5 knots in a Westerly direction but is increasingly swinging North. Therefore as well as pushing us in the right direction our best close hauled course was gradually getting worse so the engine has had to come back on to help out.For this leg in particular Firefly is carrying a lot of extra fuel. In addition to the relatively small 150 litre fuel tank we have 30 x 5 litre jerry cans all individually strapped in place under the floorboards. read more...


10/02/2014

Skyelark of London - 9th Feb - whos in the doldrums?

Dawn broke to a sea shared only with a container ship headed for the canal and the morning star bright in the sky. A beautiful, starry night and a bright, new moon released by a up coming sun and a light breeze from north, changing into no breeze at all and a light clouded sky which gives us a kind, cooler day in the great Pacific . Dull room, hm, where have I heard about that? It is obviously around us everywhere. With only 8 knots of wind we would have been rather stuck without our trustable horses. Heading 221 South on "oiled water" there is no "rocking and rolling", but a great opportunity to do even more sophisticated dishes. Sams banana cake today is among our highlights of deliciouscourses. Who was talking about losing weight?....We have wonderful days at sea, enjoying every. read more...


10/02/2014

Nexus - Yeeehaaa! The thrill is back!

After a boring night of motoring, the wind came around this morning and built to 15kts by noon. Nexus is sailing to windward with a bone in her teeth at 8-10kts and we are all smiles here! Adding to the thrill of the new day, we hooked two Marlin this morning, probably the only fish that will chase an 8-10kt lure. One large one pulled about 100 meters of line out and majestically tail walked for about 30 meters across our stern before throwing the lure and going free! The other one pulled almost all of our line out and then stole our lure by snapping the leader. We use low quality hooks which rust out of their mouths quite quickly, as they are simply beautiful creatures and we would hate to have one die after getting away. The day is partly cloudy and cooler which is welcome, and the. read more...


10/02/2014

Starblazer - 10/02/2014 – Doldrums

This area has two names: the doldrums and the horse latitudes though the latter is a little more specific.One story is that the ‘horse latitudes’ are so called because, in the days of sailing ships, the lack of wind meant food supplies ran low and the sailors were forced to eat the horses they had on board.The vegetarian option is that they threw them overboard to swim away when fodder or water ran out.Take your pick!This lack of wind is caused by the ITCZ (inter tropical convergence zone) where the weather systems of the two hemispheres meet.It does move about and doesn’t just sit neatly above the equator so the doldrums also shift a bit further north or a bit further south.All I can say for certain is that we have found them and have been motoring steadily for about 36 hours.Two very. read more...


10/02/2014

Flomaida II - auf See Richtung Galapagos

Nun ist selbst mir der Ozean zu still geworden!Gestern haben wir noch allesversucht, um zu segeln und waren am Abend schlag kaputt. Sind halt auchnicht mehr die Jüngsten!! Morgens haben wir erstmal den Genacker wiederverstaut, da wir den Parasailor nach dem Frühstück setzen wollten. Danndrehte der leichte Wind aber doch so, dass wir ihn wieder hochzogen.Leiderscheint die Chemie zwischen ihm und uns nicht zu stimmen, er ist wiedergerissen! Also alles wieder runter und die Taue verstaut. Dann haben wirdas Besan Stag Segel gesetzt, das uns gut 1 Knoten mehr Geschwindigkeitbrachte. Als dann der Wind mehr von Achtern kam, wie angekündigt, haben wires wieder verstaut und den Parasailor mit allen Tauen vorbereitet- allesnicht so einfach, wenn man ihn lange Zeit nicht benutzt hat.. read more...


Flomaida II - auf See Richtung Galapagos
Flomaida II - auf See Richtung Galapagos
10/02/2014

Hebe - Day3 Towards Galapagos

Sunday 9th February 201402:41:97N83:31:05WHectic day, up and down with every sail Hebe has  in an effort to make the most of every little scrap of wind.  Finally we tried the parasail as the wind had shifted behind and it got in a terrible twist , as we were cursing and untangling the lines a whale blew whoosh beside us , wow! James was abandoned in the galley charged with cooking, up went the sail, phew we all ate a surprisingly tasty supper when the wind died and the whole lot had to come down again.  We then motored into a very dark and squally night when in fact we should have had some sails up, but everyone too tired!!   Gone are the starry nights with sparkling phosphorescence streaming along the boats length, and hello to equatorial squalls..  Only 2. read more...


09/02/2014

Nexus - Motoring is boring

Well the sleigh ride is over, about 11pm last night we pulled in the Spinnaker and started the engine, and here we are loping along on one engine on a hot day with little if any wind. We're getting a surprising 1.5-2Kt boost from a favorable current, but the seas are a bit of a washboard which makes the ride less comfortable. On the lighter side, we saw a pod of spinner dolphins this morning on watch, which leap high in the air and do flips and acrobatics for you, which is always a special thrill. I didn't know they were this far north in the Pacific. If this current keeps up, we'll be in the Galapagos by Tuesday evening. We're thinking about crossing the Equator for the first time tomorrow, Sheldon has some fiendish plan for a ceremony to welcome us to the seven seas club, which we are. read more...


09/02/2014

Skyelark of London - The pacific

7th FebAfter the ceremony and formality of the World ARC starting line we enjoyed agreat early sail amid light winds with Dan opting to forego the spinnaker while we watched other boats drop behind to wrestle theirs. Gradually though the conditions became ripe and we launched te spinnaker and made good progress, albeitlistening with some frustration as crews around us taunted each other with fishy tales. We opted instead for Sams sausage pasta, but just as the sausages thawed our lure tactics paid off and George expertly landed and seamlessly filleted a 5ft Dorada or mahi-mahi.Around 9pm a loud thump from on deck signalled a turn around. Our skipper Em had received news of a family emergency necessitating our return to Panama so she could fly home. We spent the night sailing upwind and. read more...


09/02/2014

Firefly - Wind shuts down, crew goes overboard!

As expected the wind dropped late Saturday afternoon and we started motoring. On the radio net role call Sunday morning all boats reported light winds but with the leading boats on a more Southerly route enjoying some breeze building from the South and that they were starting to sail again. Currently we are motoring at relatively low revs on a glassy sea, there is 3 knots of breeze on the port beam so we have the mainsail up and along with a favorable currents its all helping us to achieve an SOG (speed over ground) of about 6.5 knots towards Galapagos.Its very warm here and Susie insisted that we stop for a swim to cool down a bit. Having seen Youtube videos of yachts stopping mid ocean, the crew diving off and a great white turning up, Paul was a little reluctant to take part but was. read more...


09/02/2014

American Spirit II - Day 37; The Trophy Size Blue Marlin That Got Away!; How I Log; Sunday, February 9, 2014

The story you about to hear is a true fish story. Not to be confused with the 'fibber' fish stories that all fishermen make up. You know what I mean. The imaginary largest fish in the world that got away story. One of the differences between my fish story and others is that I had a witness. Joel Heyne. Joel was sound asleep at the time (he got off watch at 3:00 AM), but my yelling at the top of my lungs woke him up, which is a feat in itself. And though I have friends who would gladly alibi for me, Joel is not one to cross that line for a fish. Joel, did you see that whale that I hooked?So, back to the story. At 8:35 AM this morning I hooked a GIANT Blue Marlin. At first I thought I had a nice size Dolphin (Mahi Mahi, not Flipper). I said 'trophy size' in the subject line because Joel. read more...



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