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06/02/2018

Blue Pearl - Blue Pearl-Las Perlas

It is a beautiful morning at our Contadora anchorage in the Las Perlas Islands. Lyn and John our new and delightful crew from Australia have taken the dinghy to go ashore and explore this small island which is a weekend beach destination for the Panama City Crowd.The Las Perlas Archipelago is a short daysail from mainland Panama where we departed from yesterday morning after staying at the LaPlayita marina for 4 days. Based there we explored Panama City both new and old and the bit destroyed in 1671 by pirate Henry Morgan. The City has done an amazing job of turning Henry's handy work into a beautifully maintained and educational museum site (Panama la Vieja). It is always disturbing to see how destructive violence ruled so much of the Middle Ages. Have we learned from this?In any case. read more...


IceBear - S/v Someday and somebody else frame a sweet Panamanian sunset at Isla las Perlas
IceBear - S/v Someday and somebody else frame a sweet Panamanian sunset at Isla las Perlas
05/02/2018

Lexington - Captain Bob: Salvador Prize giving

We had a nice welcoming party sponsored by the marina and sailing concerns. They had demonstrations of the traditional dancing and music. image1 image2 image3 image4 image5. read more...


Lexington - Captain Bob: Salvador Prize giving
Lexington - Captain Bob: Salvador Prize giving
Lexington - Captain Bob: Salvador Prize giving
Lexington - Captain Bob: Salvador Prize giving
Lexington - Captain Bob: Salvador Prize giving
Lexington - Captain Bob: Salvador Prize giving
Lexington - Captain Bob: Salvador Prize giving
Lexington - Captain Bob: Salvador Prize giving
Lexington - Captain Bob: Salvador Prize giving
Lexington - Captain Bob: Salvador Prize giving
04/02/2018

Lexington - Captain Bob: Salvador Tour

Yesterday we did a guided tour of the city. I will post a few photos image1 image2 image3 image4. read more...


Lexington - Captain Bob: Salvador Tour
Lexington - Captain Bob: Salvador Tour
Lexington - Captain Bob: Salvador Tour
Lexington - Captain Bob: Salvador Tour
Lexington - Captain Bob: Salvador Tour
Lexington - Captain Bob: Salvador Tour
Lexington - Captain Bob: Salvador Tour
Lexington - Captain Bob: Salvador Tour
04/02/2018

Lexington - Captain Bob: Salvador

A group went on a tour of part of the city yesterday. We had a very nice time with an English speaking guide. It gave us a little taste of the city and made us a little braver about exploring the city. There was a carnival type party going on in an area called San Antonio. We headed out to eat dinner and then see the party. On the tour a restaurant that was "the best " was pointed out to us. We considered ourselves brilliant that we found it. Actually there was a larger group at first. One set of people thought it was one way and of course the others thought the other way. We split and never saw the other group for the rest of the night. Our meal was great. Afterwards we walked around a little gathering in all the strange people. image1This was a drumming group performing in the. read more...


Lexington - Captain Bob: Salvador
Lexington - Captain Bob: Salvador
Lexington - Captain Bob: Salvador
Lexington - Captain Bob: Salvador
Lexington - Captain Bob: Salvador
Lexington - Captain Bob: Salvador
Lexington - Captain Bob: Salvador
Lexington - Captain Bob: Salvador
03/02/2018

Air Power - Feb 2

Its been 4 fun days in the marina. We went on a tour of Panama City and took in views of the Panama Canal locks. We got a chance to take the trikes out for a ride each day. There is a nice boardwalk that runs about 2 1/2 miles along the waterway. They seem to be doing a lot of construction near us, for a cruise ship port.The tides on the Pacific side contrast greatly with the Caribbean side. On the north side of Panama, the tides are pretty negligible. Probably about 1-2 feet. On the Pacific side, they are 16-18 feet. Each morning at low tide, there is a huge mud flat in front of our slip that fills in around noon, and fills up by 5 o'clock in the evening. Currently, due to a Lunar event, the tides are the lowest that they have ever been in the last 130 years. It goes on for several. read more...


02/02/2018

Lexington - Captain Bob: arrived at Salvador

We are tied up to a marina. We got in after dark but had nice moon light and a lot of people to meet us to help with lines. I will post a photo of the lights of Salvador as we came in. May fair winds fill your sails with soft landings. Bobimage1. read more...


Lexington - Captain Bob: arrived at Salvado
Lexington - Captain Bob:  arrived at Salvado
31/01/2018

Air Power - 30 Jan

It took 2 full days to make it through the Panama Canal. Prior to this, there was a little self-induced stress in the planning. We had to raft up with 2 mono-hulls. One of each side of our catamaran. We talked among ourselves how we would secure the lines. After pre-positioning ourselves, a work boat pulled up and delivered our "advisors", (Canal employees working a 2nd job assisting small boats like us, navigate our way through the canal). Since we had 11 boats making up 4 tiers, (3 rafted abreast, x3, then 2 at on the last tier), there was one overall advisor in charge. He passed information and instructions (i.e. speed), to the rest of the advisers. Each boat had one, with the center of the raft as the local supervisor for the raft. We had 2 on our boat each day. Carlos was completing. read more...


31/01/2018

Shepherd Moon - Brief encounter

Following our disappointing night at the monkey-less, Lindon Island, we decided pay a quick visit to the town of Portobello, once a major port for sending gold back to Spain, but now slightly shabby around the edges. The wind was blowing strongly offshore as we turned the headland and set course for the anchorage. As we headed into the bay I noticed the bows of a dugout canoe pointing upwards at an alarming angle. Then, in true Titanic style, it slipped slowly backwards into the water and disappeared. This was followed by some frantic whistling from a local guy who had been happily sitting in his canoe a few moments earlier, but now found himself in the sea, with his livelihood sinking beneath him.With the wind blowing him out to sea, he clearly needed help. We altered course and motored. read more...


31/01/2018

Lexington - Captain Bob: 13*43'south. 33*31'west

We are blasting along our course to Brazil. For about the last 24 hours we have have 15-20 knot winds. We are doing 7-8 knots under a full moon. It would s truly a beautiful night With the moon light there is good visibility. Tonight I had a fishing vessel approaching from my port side. They did not show up on AIS.I altered my course to starboard away from them. They then turned toward me. They came within about 300 feet before turning away. I heard them on the radio and I replied. We each did not understand the other. Since then they have been off my port at slightly increasing range. At least they made my night more interesting. We are about 300 miles out or about 2 days. May fair winds fill your sails with full moon light. Bob. read more...


29/01/2018

Blue Pearl - Blue Pearl-Shelter Bay

Shelter Bay is the marina close to the entrance to the Panama Canal where the World ARC fleet has gathered awaiting transiting the Canal.We arrived here on Wednesday afternoon after a very nice sail from the town of Portobello where we had spent the night after enjoying a great meal at Jack's, a beautifully situated restaurant serving wonderful food. We had sailed to Portobello from Porvenir our last stop in the San BlasIslands and the location of a Panamanian immigration office. Getting to the office from the boat was a little challenging as the island is surrounded by reefs. I probably didn't follow the instructions carefully as I managed to hit the reef three times with my dinghy engine.But here we are in Shelter Bay getting ready to transit the Canal Tuesday and Wednesday (it is. read more...


28/01/2018

Skyelark of London - 6. A surreal world

6.A surreal worldIt is ridiculous to jump happily into the deep end of a swimming pool but feel apprehensive about diving into the ocean when the bottom is around three and a half miles below - but you do. There is no real increased risk but the mind plays tricks. Diving off Skyelark into a calm peerless ocean caught one's breath. The water was a perfect temperature, there were no nasties around - sharks or Portuguese men of war - and it was a bit saltier than expected. But the blue was not just on the surface but if you opened your eyes under water, the brilliant all encompassing colour stretched down to the infinities below. The apprehension was justified; we were intruders into a new and magical world.That day the grey over cast and squally weather had gone and been replaced by. read more...


28/01/2018

Air Power - 27 Jan

We took our two bikes (Catrikes, 3 wheels) out for a ride. Unlike Santa Marta, Columbia, we went out the back entrance of the marina unnoticed. In Santa Marta, these unusual cycles drew stares. We are used to that. Around kids in the 10 yr old group and above, you have to stay aware. A cattle prod would be a nice addition to the bikes. After wandering around the national park, which was formerly Ft Sherman, we entered MonkeyVille. With no responsibility or mandate to the electorate, these primates swing from the trees hurling insults, branches and who knows what else at unsuspecting visitors. (Was that a Snickers Bar?). "Neek, Neek, Neek, come back again, and I'll taunt you a second time". They were clearly Monty Python fans. Point a smart phone camera, and these cowards retreat to the. read more...


27/01/2018

Le Aum - A caminho do Canal do Panamá

> Entrámos no alto mar a caminho do Canal do Panamá....viagem difícil, de ondulação desencontrada que nos chocalhava.> Entretanto, sentados no convés, apreciávamos as ondas que num vaivém desmedido, ora coroadas de espuma branca quais cordeirinhosvinham beijar docemente, num embalo doce e acolhedor o Lê Aum, ora se formavam em montanhas de água furiosa, investindo, batendo, causticando o casco do barco que rangia desconsolada mas não desistia do percurso programado.> Ao largo vêem se outros veleiros, alguns cargueiros.> Começa a ver se costa já com altura considerável, de constituição rochosa e constata se uma coisa curiosa: a estibordo o céu está límpido aqui e ali salpicado de pequenas nuvens brancas... o mar azul> A bombordo o céu escurece, acinzenta, fica. read more...


27/01/2018

Le Aum - Ilha de Porvenir

> Chegámos à ilha de Porvenir, onde tivemos que parar no Serviço de Imigração para fazer o registo das pessoas que iam a bordo> Imposto pesado, dado que se pagou 120 dólares por pessoa e 20;dólares pelo barco.> Havia militares sisudos, mantendo uma suposta ordem...> A ilha estava atravessada de um lado ao outro por uma pista de avionetas...exclusivamente privadas.> Nesta ilha existia um hotel feito em madeira, que não funcionava porque a polícia do governo não autorizava que funcionasse> Ambiente idílico...perto do Museu dos Cunas, uma rapariguita bonita, bem pintada e arranjada, que sentada numa rede bordava panos tradicionais> Voltados ao barco, compraram se oito lagostas pequenas por dez dólares e deliciamo-nos com elas bem arranjadas e cozinhadas num arroz de. read more...


27/01/2018

Le Aum - San Blas

> São sete da manhã e preparamo nos para partir, após pequeno-almoço tomado> A paisagem mantém se igual à de ontem, soando perto o som dos passarinhos piando, cantando, debicando pequenas gotas de chuva que ainda há pouco refrescaram o ambiente > Perto vêem se alguns veleiros e mais longe visiona se uma pequena piroga onde um dos nativos acoplou uma vela, deslizando suavemente na aragem matinal.> Os primeiros preparativos estão tomados: estuda se o percurso, levanta se ferro, já que temos estado fundeados... diz se adeus aos que ficam e voilá... > Deixamos para trás S. Blás e as suas muitas ilhas de formação coralínea. Cresceram do fundo do mar para cima, devido ao aparecimento de corais onde milenarmente se foram fixando areias, detritos, algas, anémonas e grande. read more...


27/01/2018

Lexington - Captain Bob: 1/27/2018 Fish Tale

We are making slow progress to Brazil. We have just enough winds to keep us from motoring but not moving as swift as we like. Today I caught a fairly nice mahi mahi. Aurora was with in a mile or so. As I cleaned the fish, Aurora made their way close enough for us to pass a large (half a fish) fillet to Dan on the bow of their boat. Karen cooked ours perfectly. It was a nice diversion for the day. And we caught it early enough to share it and early enough not to interfere when Karen's dinner plans. I will post photos of the fish and hand off. Yes, nobody in their right mind would pass two boats underway within 15 feet to pass fish fillets!Ken (captain of Aurora ) and I are not know for our normality. May fair winds fill your sails with plenty of fish to shareBobimage1 image2. read more...


Lexington - Captain Bob: 1/27/2018 Fish Tale
Lexington - Captain Bob: 1/27/2018 Fish Tale
Lexington - Captain Bob: 1/27/2018 Fish Tale
Lexington - Captain Bob: 1/27/2018 Fish Tale
26/01/2018

Lexington - Captain Bob : 15*04'south. 22*05' west

We are doing well we have light but adequate winds, predicted to improve. I have stared reading THE RISE AND FALL OF THE THIRD REICH.I am not very far along in the book. I am not a good history buff. It is hard to keep all the parties and individuals in my head. We have our problems with crazy people today but it is hard to imagine how crazy or genius some of these people were. One person was a chicken farmer who lacked much education or training but became a trusted party to Hitler. The only thing I have come up with so far is how simple my mind and my life is. Would we be better off with more people like me that just go along working or more people that are thinking. It seems that the smarter people are crazier they may be. I will be happy to conquer the weeds in my garden rather than. read more...


25/01/2018

Shepherd Moon - Wedding bells

I am sitting in the cockpit in the pitch dark, with just pinpoints of light from the other boats in the anchorage and from the shore.Shepherd Moon is gently rocking from side to side and, in the distance, there is the faint sound of surf breaking on the reef. It's all very soporific, or at least it was until the peace and tranquillity was shattered by the wild whooping of monkeys. There is a troop that lives on the nearby island and, according to the guidebook, they are very friendly when you arrive, but get very upset when you try to leave. Jacob and I rowed over earlier to put this to the test, but there was not a monkey to be seen. Clearly we weren't looking hard enough.We are heading west towards the start of the Panama Canal after a very enjoyable four-day exploration of the San. read more...


26/01/2018

Air Power - Jan 25

We decided to break up the 70 mile passage into 2 days. We pulled in to a sheltered spot behind Grand Isle for the night after covering about 45 miles. After setting the anchor in approximately 5 meter deep water, we threw some ribs in the oven and were set for the night. There was a floating tiki bar on pontoons a couple of hundred meters in front of us. It was lit up with lights, with a few locals hanging out. It didn't look like it was worth the effort to put the dinghy in the water and go over. Instead, we stared at the lights and stars for this evening's entertainment. We got up early the next morning to finish the last 25 miles to the Canal. The waves built up during the day and were pushing us along. You could have surfed some of them on a board. And we did on our hulls. So did a. read more...


24/01/2018

Skyelark of London - 6. A day in the life of an ancient mariner

2.50 am. alarm goes off.Who in their right minds would choose a month's holiday where every morning the alarm goes off for amidnight, 3am or 6am watch (depending on which watch you are on) to ensure you get out of bed, climb into probably yesterday's clothes and then spend three hours in the cold and dark with someone you have just met?And the word bed is a bit of an over statement - mine is a shelf in the saloon above the seating area. It is six feet long, two feet wide and only two feet high. To get in, as there is a metal pillar in the way, I have to hunch up my legs and roll. Once in, apart from being in very public view, it is so narrowif I want to turn over I have to wake up and adjust my position. Hermann, my current watch dancing partner, is well over six feet tall and broad with. read more...


23/01/2018

Blue Pearl - Blue Pearl-Rolling to San Blas

We thought it would be OK for Blue Pearl to miss the start of the Santa Marta to San Blas leg by a day since our Aruba sojourn had set us back about 4 days behind the rest of the fleet and left us with very little time in Santa Marta.I should havementioned , when I wrote before , the heroic performance of Joe, our senior crew member, docking stern to into a slip with the wind gusting 25-30kts on the beam in the marina in Santa Marta. For the uninitiated that's quite an achievement.In any case less than 48 hours later we were on our way again, sailing West to the San Blas Islands. The San Blas Islands make for an interesting story. Worth your while to read up on and learn about the nation of the Guna Indians but too involved to describe here. One little tidbit:" keep your hands off the. read more...


23/01/2018

Air Power - Jan 22

We did our first shopping with with the locals. We had been approached everyday, from multiple dugout canoes wanting to sell us something. We were really too busy each time, so we did our best to wave them off politely. This day, we bought a couple of lobsters, and put them in a large bucket of saltwater until dinner time. Then there was the canoe with the Molas. These are embroidered cloth, about the size of one side of a small throw pillow. I'm not sure if we'll ever use or display it on a wall. But currently, if a canoe approaches, we hold it up like a surrender flag. "We already have one." Based on my watching Jill knit, I know a lot of work goes into making these. So they are quite a bargain.There were 5 boats left in the anchorage last night. We went over to a boat named Christine.. read more...


22/01/2018

Lexington - Captain Bob: 1/22/2018 15*47'south. 10*19'west

We are sailing along toward Salvador de Bahia. It will take 10-12 days.It is 05:00 and I am on watch. I have had a few periods of light wind but mostly 12-15 knots of wind , no rain, about 60 degrees F I have been trying to plan my return into a productive society. I do not have a job to go back to as I have retired from my medical practice. I have many things on my to do list because I have neglected the farm , garden and yard for over a year.Because I have a lot of time on the boat to think and plan, I have been making list and defining goals. I really have a hard time making decisions. For instance, we have a large full basement full of accumulated junk. For sure I could probably throw away 75% of everything that is in the basement. It has tall ceilings and could be finished into a. read more...


21/01/2018

Taurus - San Blas Meeting

19./20.01.2018San Blas Islands entpuppte sich als zauberhaftes Fleckchen auf der Erde. Am Samstag Morgen zeigte sich die Insel von ihrer sonnigen Seite. Die Distanzen waren so kurz, dass die nächsten Inseln mittels schwimmen erreichbar war. Das liess ich mir auch nicht nehmen und schwamm gleich früh morgens rüber zu einer kleinen Insel voller Palmen. Man musste Schwimmschuhe tragen, da es bereits 40-50 Meter vor dem weissen Sandstrand so flach war, dass man laufen konnte. Jedoch lief man der Gefahr sich die Füße ohne Schuhe zu verletzen aufgrund von Steinen und Korallen am Grund und womöglich lauerte dort auch der ein oder andere See-Igel. Das Wasser war herrlich erfrischend und gleichzeitig warm.Auf den kleinen Inseln leben einge Einheimische Cuna Indianer. Sie leben mit ihren Kindern. read more...


21/01/2018

Mischief - Santa Marta to San Blas

Hi FolksWe set off from Santa Marta at 1200hrs today having only finished our repairs at midnight yesterday. Talk about last minute but the damaged mast track has been staightened and refitted. More importantly we have figured why it is happening so a small rigging alteration and change in procedure should prevent a repeat.We left the shelter of the harbour to be greeted by 30knts of wind and big seas. We reefed down and despite it being hard to move about the boat we are making good speed. We should be in the San Blas Islands in less than 2 days. They are meant to be stunning so we are all really looking forward to it.Just as we were getting used to be at sea again we caught an enormous Wahoo, we estimated it to be 50lb in weight which took all of us to drag it over the rail. After well. read more...


21/01/2018

Mischief - Birthday to Remember

We arrived in the San Blas Islands at 4.00 am and because it was dark we slowed up so we could negotiate the reefs around the islands in the daylight. According to the charts the reefs are only advisary and cannot be relied on. So we deployed Trevor on the bow to direct us around the hazards so we could anchor safely. Our first stop was Caos Cocos Banderos. This is an island consisting of a few palm trees and a Kuna Yalla Indian family living in a hut which reminded me of Robinson Crusoe. They were selling handicrafts which we bought a few to be polite. We spent most of the day relaxing and catching back up on the sleep we lost during the trip. The following day was my birthday so we decided to celebrate with fillet steak which we had stocked the freezer with. The meat in Santa Marta was. read more...


21/01/2018

Air Power - Jan 21

We arrived in the San Blas Islands 2 days ago. That morning it was a constant drizzle and turned into downpours as we were looking for a place to anchor. We found an anchorage with a few other boats hiding behind the islands out of the wind and waves. In typical fashion, just like the movie Top Gun, we did a low speed pass (3 kts) passing by all the boats swinging our bow to port and stern. Just knowing they were drinking coffee, spilling it on themselves. (#$%^ that Maverick 440, we're going to have their butt). After setting the hook, Jill and I jumped up in the air on the trampoline to high five ourselves, "We don't have the need for speed." I'm not sure Tom Cruise wants to be seen with us.The following day, our ducky weather turned to sunshine. The water is about 8-10 feet deep. It's. read more...


20/01/2018

Lexington - Captain Bob: Women's Rights March

So this is to demonstrate that we celebrated Women's Rights Day. I hope you like the photos May fair winds fill your sails with your rights no matter who you are!Bobimage1 image2. read more...


Lexington - Captain Bob: Women's Rights March
Lexington - Captain Bob: Women's Rights March
Lexington - Captain Bob: Women's Rights March
Lexington - Captain Bob: Women's Rights March
20/01/2018

Skyelark of London - 5. The Enchanted Isle

5. The Enchanted Isleby our resident Blogger -TimAt 9am on the 17th St Helena appeared in grey outline on the horizon. Good progress had been made overnight with Sjaak at the helm.Arabela were just getting in and advised of strong gusty winds of up to 40 knots as the trade winds scythed around the island.Dan cooked pancakes to get us set up for our arrival. Options were to reef down or down the main and go in on the foresail. Choosing the latter we had a good run in and moored on buoy 16 in the harbour at around 3pm. Owl and Tulla Mhor came in later that evening. But if it had been a race - and allowing for handicap and engine time - we are confident we knew who had won. Beers all round.St Helena is one the remotest islands on earth - 1,200 miles from African Angola and 2,000 from. read more...


20/01/2018

Libeccio - Spectacular Welcome at the San Blas Islands

You may recall from the previous blog entry that we had wasted the better part of the day with just the genoa as we waited for the anticipated increase in winds to the 30's. The increase did not arrive and contrary to our general approach to night time, we increased our sail rather than decreased it. The decision to raise the main with 2 reefs was just the tonic to get us going again and we are pleased to stay that we made very good time- helped by a steady increase in the winds as we approached the San Blas Islands. As it turned out, we were able to take 4 hours off of our arrival time and managed to cross the finish line at 9:15 am. The original thinking was that it is best to approach islands with coral surrounding them between the hours of 10 and 2-- the time that the sun is at its. read more...


19/01/2018

Taurus - zweite Etappe - San Blas

17. - 19.01.2018Die Taurus meldet sich samt Crew zurück nach 291,4 NM Überfahrt von Santa Marta/Kolumbien nach San Blas Islands. Heute morgen um 8:59 sind wir über die Ziellinie gesegelt und liegen nun gemütlich vor Anker mit Blick auf die Palmen und weißen Sandstrand. Im Augenblick nieselt es leider noch, heute morgen wurden wir hier mit Regen und wolkenverhangenen, grauen Himmel empfangen. So hatten wir seit dem Start in St. Lucia wieder mal Gelegenheit unser Ölzeug auszupacken, damit wir bloß nicht auf die Idee kommen könnten, wir hätten es umsonst eingepackt.In dieser Etappe werden wir leider nicht in die Wertung mit einbezogen, was tatsächlich ärgerlich ist da wir unterwegs einige Mitsegler trotz verspäteten Start überholt hatten. In Santa Marta war uns ein pünktlicher Start. read more...



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