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Walkabout - Blog Day 4 - 23rd February 2023

N11:14.8 W74.23.2

It’s a yellow fin tuna kinda day!

Tom caught his first big fish today and it was a whoppa! A 68cm long Yellow Fin tuna!!

What a 24 hours it has been! We are nearing the end of our first leg from Rodney Bay, St Lucia to Santa Marta, Columbia with a shout of Land Ahoy about an hour ago when the majestic misty mountains of Columbia came in to view!

Walkabout has done us proud yet again and seen the three of us safely through some rough weather cross the Caribbean Sea.

A few stats to share:
850 nautical miles
5 days
3 blue-water-runner sails changes
7 night shifts each
1 yellow fin tuna
1 sashimi dinner (more to come plus many tuna steaks in the freezer!)

The day started out relaxed and calm with winds peaking below 20 knots so we decided to fly our Blue Water Runner. The BWR is a down wind sail and flies off the bow on its own furler. It gives us great speed but is also a tricky sail to set up but oh it’s worth it when she flies!

The fishing lines were out, the BWR flying, the sun was shining and then we had a call of ‘fish on!!’
It was action stations to prepare for hauling in dinner. We sluiced the teak decks down to avoid any staining, out fishing box of goodies was brought out so we had everything to hand.
That was when the wind decided to pick up to early 20’s with Walkabout steaming through the water at 8.5 - 9 knots!

There was a lot going on and we had to decide what the priority was … ? The fish of course!

Tom we reeling in the fishing line, fighting against what we now know was a good size yellow fin tuna which we measured at 68cm. Sadly we couldn’t put our hands on the weight scales.

Tom hauled the tuna aboard Walkabout, we then set about dispatching our beautiful catch with neat vodka into the gills for a quick and happy passing.

Next job was to fillet our catch so out came the mat, large chopping board and filleting knife and Andrew expertly removed both huge fillets which we then trimmed for sashimi snd enjoyed with pickled ginger, soya sauce and wasabi. The rest was filleted up into portions and will supply team Walkabout with four big dinners!
What a catch!!

If we can plan to catch one fish a week, we’ll be eating very well across the pacific.

Next job on the list was to take down the BWR! Not an easy feat in 24 knots of wind and speeds of 8-10 knots.

Andrew and Tom went to the bow with full harness and slowly removed the lines and we were then able to furl it away and relax …

The mainsail was hoisted and Genoa unfurled, both reefed to ease the boat and steady her along for a smooth sail.

We celebrated with a coke, ginger beer, tea all round and a tube of Pringles! That beer would have to wait.

No rest for any of us that day, no catch up on lost sleep from the previous night shifts, no reading or listening to music, it was a full-on maxed-out day and it was brilliant!

The weird thing was that we did enjoy our freshly caught sashimi tuna but we were all holding on tight while nibbling away doing up to 9 knots!

It’s 1050 local and Team Walkabout are approaching Santa Marta, Colombia.

After 7860 nautical miles since we left Plymouth, Team Walkabout are about to make landfall in our first mainland continent!

Hello South America.

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