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06/02/2023

Aquavita - Day 22 squall (kinda)

Today I was playing cards with Elke when she saw a squall and it was coming from behind us. It was grey and like a big mushroom cloud. The jib was quickly rolled up while the waves increased by 1-1.5 meters. It was scary how the waves came up, they looked like they were going to crash onto the boat and in the last second rolled underneath our hulls. It was our first squall and, wait - where is it? It seems the squall was coming towards us and then it faded away. It must have decided not to face us because it was scared. ;-)Author: Jason. read more...


06/02/2023

Aquavita - Day 21 chat over the water

We saw a boat named Capibara on the AIS 6nm ahead of us. We caught up with them a few hours later and were only half a mile apart at the closest distance. We called them on the radio. They responded straight away and we had a lovely chat. They were a Danish couple who had been sailing for 13 years on their 30 foot monohull. They had done an Atlantic crossing before, and will be crossing the Pacific next and eventually travel to Australia. We exchanged a lot of information about our respective sailing trips, it's almost like chatting with the next door neighbour, except the neighbour is 2km away over the water and we don't even know what they look like. We hope to see them somewhere in the Caribbean. With only a boat name to go by it might be difficult to track them down. We'll have to. read more...


05/02/2023

Ca Canny - Days 20-22 Now actually almost there!

In the last couple of days we have seen much better sailing winds- finally the trade winds appear! On Friday we covered more than 160 nautical miles, and Saturday we experienced consistent 30 knot winds, but had to tack to 235 degrees overnight pushing us further south, a little bit off our ideal course. Then, at first light we tacked again to 290 degrees giving us a straight run into St Lucia with a good tailwind. Today, the wind reached over 40 knots making it a bit uncomfortable on board, and providing a further challenge to Alan who was cooking dinner. - Ca Canny. read more...


04/02/2023

Aquavita - Day 19 cool running

We saw two other boats on the AIS today, one from the ARC fleet (the one we saw yesterday), and a slow boat not part of the ARC. We tried talking to both on the radio, the ARC boat didn't respond (maybe they weren't listening to their radio); the slow boat responded and told us he was solo sailing across the Atlantic. He had been out on the ocean for three and a half weeks, and still had another two weeks to go. My respect to him for taking such an epic journey all by himself. Later we lifted the blister again and were sailing at 7kts. The daylight was dimming when we had visuals of both boats with their sails full, one to the left and one to the right of us, each about 1-2nm away. We were like the three musketeers, parallel to each other, sailing in the middle of the ocean, on our. read more...


04/02/2023

Aquavita - Day 20 we'll miss the party

Yesterday we received an email from ARC Rally Control that the social events start on Monday 6th Feb with a sunset cruise welcome party. Our current ETA is Tuesday AM on the 7th - we were going to miss the welcome party! So we sent an email to rally control asking if it's possible to postpone the party to Tuesday, as this year's fleet of 30 is small and several other boats will be arriving around the same time as us. We received a courteous reply today explaining why they couldn't move the welcome party, and that:"Based on current ETAs we will have 18 boats arrived in time to attend the Welcome Party, You are currently the 19th boat, with an ETA of Monday evening. We hope that you receive some good conditions in the final days so you can attend all the parties you wish."We could almost. read more...


04/02/2023

Mistral of Portsmouth - Panama City

We had 3 days in glorious Panama city … what a fabulous place. Totally surpassed my expectations!It was a frantic start. Jane & Tim left the boat to head home. Sadly, there was not much ceremony … time was short and our focus was getting work organised to repair the damage to the boat … metal worker for the stanchions, polisher for the hull and woodworker for the capping rail. We had had an amazing trip together with Jane & Tim so I feel the need to get back together, drink champagne and say a proper thank you, reminiscing about bonding in the bilges when we next see them!Laura and I got down to cleaning the boat ready for Shirls and David who arrived at 7.30pm - straight from the airport. I worried that Laura may have thought she was joining us for a few days of R&R … on her. read more...


Mistral of Portsmouth - Panama City
Mistral of Portsmouth - Panama City
03/02/2023

Cohiba - Day 19 Cohiba blog

Written on our iPad ( hate these things ) really who cares weather (sic) it’s written on an iPad or android etc etc Well we have hopefully just done our last pole Gybe and foresail set as we aim for the finish, just under 400 nm to go, think we can smell rum !!!! Crew now a well drilled machine, hoping to be well oiled shortly...Our Reggie (tame flying fish) is drying out nicely and is spoken to most days or sought for advice and local weather tips.Reflecting on the past few days, at last seeing the true trades, glorious sunny days, clear moon lit nights, brilliant sailing....I wonder what the worlds leaders are doing about the weed situation? Plays havoc with our Pauline, the hydrovane, so Pontius the Pilot is putting in his shifts too when we tire of Mandraulic helming.The chefs. read more...


02/02/2023

Mistral of Portsmouth - The Panama Canal

We slipped lines at 2pm and motored to the waiting area. A force 6 wind and threat of rain didn’t dampen our excitement! We anchored along with our ‘nest buddies’, Far and Amanzi. Our advisor arrived at 5pm and we were off. Amanzi led, followed by Far and then us … in convoy up to the entrance of the first lock. Under supervision, we rafted up tight next to each other - Far in the middle and the 2 Oyster 56 yachts either side. We moved forward slowly into the first chamber. It is huge! With Chris on the helm, the adviser next to him, Tim and I each handled a line that tied the boat to a line handler at the top of the chamber … our role was to maintain tension in the lines as the water poured into the chamber - ensuring that in spite of water turbulence, the nest maintained its position. read more...


Mistral of Portsmouth - The Panama Canal
Mistral of Portsmouth - The Panama Canal
02/02/2023

Ca Canny - Days 18&19- The end is (kind of) almost in sight!

Not much has happened over these past couple of days. We have all just been discussing and making plans for when we arrive in St Lucia and trying to anticipate when we will arrive, which will hopefully be early next week. We have had a few interesting flying fish on board, many that are a deep blue and last night we got one with stripes on it and it was almost a luminous colour, so that is interesting as we didn't realise how many varieties or flying fish there were. It's a good thing too because they are just about the only wildlife we see, other than the odd bird which is often too far away to identify. That's all from us for now! - Izzy. read more...


02/02/2023

Aquavita - Day 18 another day, another fish

Severin wanted to have fresh sashimi again so Daddy took his order and put out the fishing line. Less than 5 minutes later we caught a 80cm Mahi Mahi⭐️✨️♒️⛵️. The Atlantic is full of them. Apparently they are the fastest growing fish in the sea.Elke and I put the finishing touches on the chocolate cake and presented it for dinner while we sang happy birthday to Elke. We ate it with homemade whipped cream and ice cream. It is soooo good and I am proud that I did most of it.3 boats in the ARC fleet have already arrived in St Lucia and we still have 800nm to go. We saw another ARC boat on the AIS but when we tried to talk to them on the radio they didn't respond.The waves are getting lower and the wind is steady. We haven't needed to use the engine for around a week but we do to produce. read more...


Rhapsody - Rhapsody - Day 17: A crew of few words
Rhapsody - Rhapsody - Day 17: A crew of few words
01/02/2023

Rhapsody - Rhapsody - Day 17: A crew of few words

Sunshine.NE Trade winds.Poled out genoa.Downwind sailing.Dry clothes.Chocolate brownies.Fun and laughter have returned to Rhapsody and, with them, the realisation that we might make it to St Lucia soon after all.It’s the simple things in life.Clare and the crew of Rhapsody. read more...


01/02/2023

Mistral of Portsmouth - Panama Canal Transit

Timelapse video of the Panama Canal Transit, Nests 1,2 3 & 4.  Chris, Karen, Tim, Jane & Laura. read more...


01/02/2023

Aquavita - Day 17 birthday conundrum

For Elke's birthday today we had delicious barbequed pork ribs and vegetable stir fry for lunch. Elke taught me her favorite cake recipe, together we made a nice chocolate cake. Elke was going to put the finishing touches to it, then refrigerate it for an hour before it's ready.Then something happened...Author: Jason In the late afternoon the wind direction changed. The captain decided to take down the Code 0 and replace it with the blister for downwind sailing. After the Code 0 was rolled in, we found we couldn't pull down the halyard holding the Code 0. It was badly twisted. No matter how hard the two strong men pulled with all their weight, the halyard was stuck inside the mast and not moving. Everyone came up to help in the darkness,after putting on lifevests first. I held the torch. read more...


01/02/2023

Aquavita - Day 16 third fish, first storm

This morning Daddy put the lure out trying to catch a fish for Elke's birthday tomorrow. Within 10 minutes I heard the line go off. The fish was pulling hard, it was impossible to bring it in when we were sailing at 6-7 knot speed. We had to take the jib in and change course to slow down the boat. Severin said when he took in the jib and turned the boat around, he saw a whale jumping and splashing into the water 40 meters away from the boat. He was the only lucky one who saw it.Daddy pulled the fish close to the boat, Mummy brought it in using the gaff. It was a 90cm mahi mahi✨️⭐️. It fought a lot more than the 1m mahi mahi which is weird. We were all very happy with the catch. It was an early birthday present for Elke.Author: JasonThe swell today was the biggest we have seen on the. read more...


31/01/2023

Ca Canny - Days 16&17- A birthday on board!

There was not much to report on yesterday, other than the very exciting but very brief moment where we saw a pod of dolphins! Unfortunately this time they seemed too busy to swim along with the boat and they passed us before we could get a good look at them, however our best guess is that these were bottlenose dolphins as they appeared to be grey on top as opposed to the last ones we saw which looked black and white. Today was celebration time as it is Charlie's birthday. We attempted to bake him a cake with mix we bought in Gran Canaria, but as we have recently lost use of our oven it was a microwave cake. Sadly but unsurprisingly, this did not go plan and what came out of the microwave was more of a brick than a cake, but at least the fish got a meal out of it (although we reckon it. read more...


31/01/2023

Rhapsody - Rhapsody - Day 16: Something fishy

I smell like a fish. I’m not telling you this because it’s something I’m proud of, but if we do meet I don’t want you to think I’m a fan of fish perfume, have some kind of serious medical condition or am trying to impersonate the Little Mermaid. Just don’t be alarmed - breathe through your mouth as we chat and you’ll hardly smell me at all. To be honest, I think it’s something I’m going to have to learn to live with - like having hairy arms, a weak bladder and alarmingly thick toenails. At first I didn’t think my scaly odour was too overpowering, but I’ve noticed the crew no longer want to sit next to me and have started whispering behind my back. I’ve consulted my husband Terry about this but he’s assured me this has nothing to do with the smell - which I’m taking as a positive.My. read more...


Rhapsody - Rhapsody - Day 16: Something fishy
Rhapsody - Rhapsody - Day 16: Something fishy
31/01/2023

Rhapsody - Rhapsody - Day 15: The boat quiz

On Rhapsody we are fans of (even if not very good at) the Guardian Saturday Quiz and the BBC quiz show Only Connect. It is in this vein that we invite you to answer the following:Round 1 - What links…Q) Sirens, kraken, mermaids and the NE trade winds?A) They’re all nautical myths and legendsQ) Sunshine, sausages, salad and star-filled night skies?A) Things that we had on board a week ago and would like to see againQ) Nightwatch squalls, electrical storms, westerly winds and soggy waterproofs?A) Things that we’ve experienced over the past week that we would like to never see again.Round 2 - What comes next in the sequence?Q) No wind + engine on + 10 minutes; perfect wind + spinnaker up + 10 minutes; no wind + spinnaker down + 10 minutes…A) Perfect wind + spinnaker up + 10 minutes (repeat. read more...


30/01/2023

Aquavita - Day 15 dumpling dinner

It's a raining day today so we decided to make Chinese dumplings. It's my favorite meal, homemade dumplings! We had to prepare for them all day and in the evening we made them. Everyone sits at the table and helps. One person rolls the dough while 2-3 put the filling in and fold them. Then when we have enough to fill a pot someone goes and cooks them. After they are cooked we stop working momentarily to eat the batch and then get back to work. This process continues until everyone is full and all the filling or dough is used up.The only thing was the sea was not calm at all. It made boiling dumplings in hot water in the rolling conditions very challenging. But they turned out nice as usual. We ate the dumplings with sauce made up of soy sauce, balsamic vinegar and garlic. It was so. read more...


30/01/2023

Cohiba - Day 15 maybe

Well Sunday was fun no wind at all and I mean no wind .Two Dorados and of course the biggest one got away, but the kept one fed us all with left overs fresher than fresh gorgeous.So trade winds mmmmm well maybe they come back soon. It’s very strange seeing the Atlantic so mirror like. Swimming this afternoon was fun with comedy dives and go pro action. Water maker has been working flat out all day so fresh water showers after the salty dip for everyone.Boat smells lovely again well we think so anyway.Flying fish activity is the highlight of most days, we have detained Reggie as a guest he seems quite happy spinning gently in the breeze at the back of the boat, plan is to dry him out and after that who knows !!!!!Less than a thousand miles to go now but still the wind god looks upon us. read more...


29/01/2023

Ca Canny - Days 12-15- Still going!

Not much at all to report from days 12-15, just that we tried to head further south to avoid a predicted calm spot- which we seem to have done successfully. However, yesterday (day 14) we had yet another problem with our spinnaker which wouldn't come down due to twisting. This meant that again Alan had to go up the mast at sea which is always daunting but by now he's a pro! So, that issue was resolved fairly quickly, luckily the sea was calm enough that he wasn't bashed around quite as much as the first time he tried it this trip. We have also incurred some significant damage to our main sail, with four broken batons and the top of the sail very shredded, which seems to be affecting our progress. However, morale is still high and we are all very excited to arrive in St Lucia (preferably. read more...


29/01/2023

Mistral of Portsmouth - Shelter Bay … the marina on the Atlantic side of the Panama Canal

We got into the Marina at 8am and had a busy day cleaning, doing laundry, filling up with water and generally getting ourselves ready for a haul out the following day. The boat was due out of the water to have her hull cleaned and anti-fouled ahead of the sail to Galapagos where there are very strict regulations regarding the state of the boat and what we can take into the islands in terms of food e.g. no fruit with seeds, no eggs, no chicken fresh or frozen (they are worried about avian flu). We had booked ourselves into a Hotel in Colon - a 25 minute taxi ride away in the nearest town whilst the boat is out of the water.The boat came out mid afternoon. Hauling out is always scary - our 27 ton boat in a cradle being hauled by a crane onto solid ground! We watch with our hearts in our. read more...


Mistral of Portsmouth - Shelter Bay … the marina on the Atlantic side of the Panama Canal
Mistral of Portsmouth - Shelter Bay … the marina on the Atlantic side of the Panama Canal
29/01/2023

Rhapsody - Rhapsody - Day 14: Thanks a bunch, PredictWind

This passage has given us a bit of everything. Well, everything except the damn Trade Winds. They’d have been nice. Even for a day or two. Still, we live in hope. There’s a long way to go. Today, even PredictWind gave up on us. I downloaded a weather route, only to be greeted with the message: “Route failed (too shallow or too much wind)”. Very helpful, especially as neither is remotely true. It was the digital equivalent of “Where’d you want to go, mate? Ooh, I wouldn’t start from here…” Thanks a bunch, PredictWind. We’ve been making our ‘total miles sailed’ guesses for when (if?) we ever get to Rodney Bay. The prize is getting the first night’s dinner for free, and estimates are around the 3,200-mile range. So, an extra 500 miles over the direct route. Nice. And, frankly, we may be. read more...


29/01/2023

Aquavita - Day 14 breakfast with dolphins

In the morning when I was upstairs with Daddy I saw a splash in the water and I knew it couldn't be a wave. A few seconds later there were more splashes and I shouted "DOLPHINS!" The dolphins were small but there were probably 50-100 of them. It was an amazing sight. They were swimming all around the boat and through the crystal clear blue water. The baby dolphins were jumping out of the water and I got some great pictures. They were everywhere you looked and some of them had tags. Sometimes 3 of them came up right next to each other and at the exact same time. Mummy had breakfast while sitting on the "dolphin" seat in the front of the boat, watching the dolphins. They stayed with us for almost an hour.For lunch Daddy cooked a yummy barbequed steak and homemade "American" fries.For. read more...


29/01/2023

Aquavita - Day 13 baker Jason

Elke told me how to make a cake and I did almost everything from measuring the ingredients to mixing and putting it in the tray. Then we put it in the oven to bake it. Afterwards we made some small egg white treats and put them in the oven. I really enjoyed baking with her.When the whole crew was up we put the cake on a plate with some ice-cream and homemade whipped cream. Everyone loved it. I am really looking forward to what else we will cook.Author: Jason. read more...


28/01/2023

Falcon Spirit - Day 14 falcon spirit sea chantey update

Arielle’s sea chantey chronology of our first 2 weeks at sea. ——————————-Pytka’s Pirate Song Yo Ho Yo Ho A Pirate’s Life for meUpon leaving the dock, the womper blewWind and waves and chaos ensuedHowling Gails for two days straightSeasick as dogs we all became Submerged below, on your throne you sit Poseidon oh great one, please make this quick…Yo ho Yo ho A pirate’s life for me…Miles away from sight of land Into the Doldrums quite soon we land No way to make power Engine problems at handLeft with no way to reach the sand 8 hours a day on watch we stay8 hours a day we rest and play Yo ho Yo hoA pirate’s life for me…We chase the storm to win the raceMoving along at a steady pace Up and down and round we go Waves crashing on deck, can’t sleep below One perilous day turns into. read more...


Rhapsody - Rhapsody - Day 13: Three days to weather
Rhapsody - Rhapsody - Day 13: Three days to weather
28/01/2023

Rhapsody - Rhapsody - Day 13: Three days to weather

It’s day 13 on Rhapsody. We are halfway across the Atlantic. The spinnaker is packed away. The galley’s stove remains fixed at a steep and constant angle with its countertops. And my Fitbit has logged 37,000 steps during my sleep. I can now say with some certainty that trade winds are an elaborate ruse concocted to lure sailors into a false sense of security when volunteering to sleep in the V-berth on passage. As the wise saying goes: “A gentle person never sails to weather.” Luckily for the crew of Rhapsody, gentle is not how one would describe us. We are collectively approaching 100,000 miles at sea with many memories of the North Pacific still fresh in the minds of several onboard. We are a collection of salt-crusted souls with backgrounds as varied as our eclectic tastes in music.. read more...


28/01/2023

Aquavita - Day 12 half way mark

At 1030 (UTC-2) today, 11 days after leaving Las Palmas, we reached the half way mark. We did about 1530nm so far and have about 1500nm left to go in a straight line. The direct course from Gran Canaria to St Lucia is about 2700nm. But we couldn't exactly go along a straight line due to wind directions. With the southern then western angles we did about 300nm extra. That makes the total journey over 3000nm.I made a roast leg of lamb in the oven that took 2.5 hours to cook yesterday, by the time it was ready half the crew were in bed. To celebrate the half way mark today we enjoyed a roast lamb lunch with fresh roasted vegetables, a perfect midway menu in the middle of the Atlantic.Author: Yvette "It's better than most lamb dishes we had in restaurants." -Jason. read more...


28/01/2023

Aquavita - Day 11 fishing triumph

I was woken up at 7.30am to the sound of "MAHI MAHI!". Daddy was reeling in one of our fishing lines and Severin was taking in the other. They both had a mahi mahi. Severin got his in first and Daddy went to help him get it on the boat while I was left with his rod and the fish was maybe half of the way in so I pulled it in. It didn't try to fight against me and it was surprisingly easy to reel it in. When we got it in Daddy tried to put his foot on the fish flopping on the deck. Eventually he had to lift it up by the line and put it inside the safety line and try to get it into a corner with his foot. He did it and it looked very funny. Now I understand why the bucket was handy. The mahi mahi was around 1 meter long and the second one was 80 centimeters. It was great to finally have a. read more...


27/01/2023

Mistral of Portsmouth - Completing our visit to San Blas …

This is why we are sailing around the world! The islands are really beautiful - picture postcard perfect. After 2 nights, we decided to explore more and sailed down to Gunboat - an atoll surrounded by reef and one tiny island. The entrance into the atoll was on the southern side - a narrow but deep and safe channel provided we could see it. The trick is to enter the atoll with the sun behind us, me stretched over the front of the boat (think titanic pose!) with polarised glasses, holding a walkie talkie so I can tell Chris to go right or left to avoid coral and shallow waters - the sea bed goes from 20 meters to 2 instantaneously so running aground is a very real possibility without a huge amount of caution. Not withstanding this, we anchored within swimming distance of the reef which. read more...


Mistral of Portsmouth - Completing our visit to San Blas …
Mistral of Portsmouth - Completing our visit to San Blas …
27/01/2023

Serendipity IV - 13. Tag

Nun haben wir den 13 Tag und sind immer noch im Einflussbereich eines Tiefs nördlich von uns, das wir auf gute Distanz gehalten haben. Da es den Einfluss des Azorenhochs, das uns frischen Wind aus der richtigen Richtung (Osten/Tradewinds), unterbrochen hatte, blieben wir drei Tage in der Flaute stecken. Mit etwas Motorunterstützung sind wir dann langsam dahin gekrochen. Betrifft wohl alle Boote unserer Klasse (Crusing 1B) mehr oder weniger. Nur die Finnen sind schlimmer und schneller, haben aber etwa sieben Mann an Bord. Nun, wir wurden bereits als das LoveBoat bezeichnet, da wir als Ehepaar zu zweit segeln. Also kein Wettrennen unsererseits. Heute ist der Himmel bedeckt und ziehen Regenwolken vorbei, die Wind bringen (nicht immer aus der richtigen Richtung) die volle Konzentration. read more...


26/01/2023

Cohiba - Day 12

Hello peeps Strange as we sail along none of us really know what day it is , which is a fantastic feeling.Beating to windward mid Atlantic is strange.Flying fish or swimming birds this is the question ?We have impact sites all over the boat some two meters above sea level. The unfortunate part is they arrive on deck at night and quietly suffocate becoming stiff and smelly.Another Dorado yesterday but full of white lice so back it went .Chicken curry instead.Water making this morning a fascinating process of converting ocean into the most fantastic tasting of nothing fresh water no minerals and only 78 parts per millionof particulates. We wonder what they are.That’s all for now folks Love and kisses COHIBA. read more...


26/01/2023

Rhapsody - Rhapsody - Day Ten: What time is it anyway?

We time travelled this morning. 10am became 9am again, for the second time on our passage so far.Some of the crew have problems with time travel. There’s always confusion as to whether the clock should be going forwards an hour, or backwards. And what does this mean for the time at home? If we had the luxury of mobile phone signal, would it be too early to call our loved ones or too late?For me, this particular time shift has caused a peculiar problem: I’m unable to set my watch to our new local time. It’s a cheap Casio digital and will apparently only allow itself to be set to certain cities around the world and none of those happen to be located in UTC+2. I should probably have downloaded the manual before we left, but I didn’t, so for the next few days I’m going to have to mentally. read more...


25/01/2023

Ca Canny - Days 10 & 11 - Not much to report!

Day 10 was very calm which obviously isn't great in terms of catching our flights, but it was a lovely day and it was amazing to see the ocean so still. Today we have had a bit more wind but not necessarily in an ideal direction, so we have had to alter our course a little more than we would like to account for the wind. We are also trying to figure out how to avoid the calm spot that we can see approaching in the forecast, but this is difficult given the wind direction we are currently facing. However, its Burn's night and Maureen (Charlie's wife) kindly sent us a Scotland-themed quiz for us to do. The teams were Smithie and David vs. Alan and Izzy with Charlie playing the role of quizmaster, it got rather competitive, especially at the end when it appeared that there was a tie, and so. read more...


25/01/2023

Aquavita - Day 10 bucket challenge

Once upon a time, there was a war between Modena and Bologna because of a bucket. The bucket sits proudly in the city hall of Modena today.It shows how the simple bucket is worshipped. It's the same on our boat.Today there was a mahi mahi on our lure. Daddy pulled the fish in and it was inside our bucket, but the bucket was outside the safety railing on the transom and the fish flopped into the water, taking the bucket with it. Sincebuckets are greatly worshipped (I mean, have you ever heard of the bucket war?), we had to take the asymmetrical spinnaker down and turn around to get the bucket. It was a shallow bucket but it was made of aluminium so if water got in it, it would sink. Luckily for us the sea was very flat so there were hardly any waves. First we turned around and saw the. read more...


25/01/2023

Cohiba - Day 11 update from the good ship Cohiba

Who would believe it beefing to windward mid Atlantic seriously !!On the plus side we get to see squalls early and practice dark cloud avoidance tactics.The crew are learning how to do 360 degree turns without even trying. The perfect wind shift was tacked on by John last evening an absolute text book manouvre that anyone would be proud of, bring on a few more of those pleeeeeeze. Planned a steak and trimmings dinner with gravy last night Squall 10 put pay to that but Chris still produced an amazing bowl dinner. Left overs eaten for breakfast by Sander this morning.The Obligitory Atlantic swim took place yesterday to include clearing barnacle growth from the prop which will now feather so no longer slowing us down or annoying us with its constant whine.Fortunately Cohiba was built with a. read more...


24/01/2023

Aquavita - Day 9 rowing across the Atlantic

We were alerted to the fact that the area the ARC fleet is traveling through is also where the transatlantic rowing race fleet is at. Today we spotted a very slow vessel in front of us on the AIS called Jonah. We suspected it might be one of those row boats. Within a few hours we caught up and could see the outline of a small, low vessel without sail bobbing in the waves about 2nm away. We tried to make contact on the VHS radio, but they didn't respond. Maybe they are too busy rowing.Many people think we are crazy for sailing a yacht across the Atlantic. Compared to these rowers, what we are doing is a walk in the park. We saw two rowing kayaks getting ready for a transatlantic trip in Lanzarote. Each kayak is manned by two rowers who row day and night for the epic journey. Other than. read more...


24/01/2023

Aquavita - Day 8 lunar new year at sea

We saw another ARC boat on the AIS in the morning, Serendipity IV. That means they were within 5-10nm of us. We had a nice chat on the VHS radio. It's always good to "bump" into another boat in the fleet.Today is Chinese New Year. Via satellite phone I could call home and wish my parents a happy CNY. Though it's old technology, I'm still amazed that even in the middle of the big ocean we can still keep in touch like (almost) normal. It's traditional to make dumplings with the whole family for CNY, and I do in fact have all the ingredients to make dumplings. On one of those calm days with a flat sea, we'll take the time to make dumplings during the passage. This was also our last mother and son watch as the watch shifts would rotate again tomorrow, making my shift in the middle of the. read more...


24/01/2023

Serendipity IV - Beginning of our second week

Tuesday, 24th January 2023.We started into our second week on sea with a squall which brought a lot of rain and drenched us through. Just before this wet encounter we tried to fix our Watt’n’Sea Hydrogenerator. During the first days the pin we used to fix it down into the water broke so we used the other fixing method with a line in stead. But also this line broke yesterday, as a result it couldn’t generate energy anymore. Unfortunately, our attempts to use another pin to hold the Hydrogenerator in place failed as it was too thick for the hole. But after lunch Michael had another go as the wind and waves quieten down. Now a screwdriver acts as a fixing pin fixed with string and duck tape. It works! We hope it will hold fast for at least the next two weeks as it generates vital energy. read more...


24/01/2023

Rhapsody - Rhapsody - Day Nine: What kind of an ARC is this?

Seriously? Upwind? On port tack? What kind of ARC is this?The lovely low-pressure system that has driven most of the fleet below 20°N brought us a nice lull in the wind this morning, giving us all a chance to jump in, wash up and chill out. Not a fish to be seen, let alone a shark. Just six Rhapsody crew members, smelling slightly better and wondering where they’d left the conditioner.When we’d dried off, we packed the spinnaker into its bag, put the pole back on the mast and got ready for a couple of days of beating. In fairness, the ex-Clipper members of the crew all looked much happier when the boat started leaning over. For days, I’ve been having to throw buckets of water on them and shake them from side to side just so they’d remember they’re on a sailboat. At least I can have a. read more...


Rhapsody - Rhapsody - Day Nine: What kind of an ARC is this?
Rhapsody - Rhapsody - Day Nine: What kind of an ARC is this?
Chica.3 - today the barber is open
Chica.3 - today the barber is open
23/01/2023

Mistral of Portsmouth - Exploring the San Blas Islands

The islands are stunning - small, deserted, lush, fringed with palm trees and surrounded by shallow aquamarine waters. Kuna Indians live on the bigger islands - very gentle and charming people. They live from the land and the sea and create ‘mola’ - hand sewn pictures of local life that are sold to anyone who will buy. I have 5 so far!After a night on our first anchorage, we decided to motor to a different location … the waters are so shallow and with reefs all around the islands we have to travel in daylight with the sun behind us so we can see the shallows and reefs. We approached a lagoon called the hot tub … a narrow channel takes you in … it was beautiful but we lost our nerve when it came to anchoring as there was just too much reef and shallow water. Moving on, we found another. read more...


11/06/2022

Arkyla - 11 Jun 22: Ready to go

The time is nearly upon us for the start.  Over the last few days skipper James has been eyeing up the weather, racer-boy Rich has been eyeing up the opposition, charmer Mark has been eying up the totty, and motorboater Mike has mostly been eyeing up the chocolate rations!  A quiet evening is planned for tonight after yesterday’s day sail around the Hoe and impromptu attempt to drink Jolly Jacks dry after the Rally welcome dinner; we will be as fresh for the Biscay leg as our combined 227 years of creaking bones will allow… James Kenning . read more...



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