can we help
+44(0)1983 296060
+1 757-788-8872
tell me moreJoin a rally

Menu


Logs

Filter by..
Search


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

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 - Completing our visit to San Blas …
Mistral of Portsmouth - Completing our visit to San Blas …
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...


Chica.3 - today the barber is open
Chica.3 - today the barber is open
Mistral of Portsmouth - Exploring the San Blas Islands
Mistral of Portsmouth - Exploring the San Blas Islands
23/01/2023

Chica.3 - taylor at work

day 6th the only spi we have is broken so  is going to be repairedtaylor at work. read more...


Chica.3 - taylor at work
Chica.3 - taylor at work
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...


Chica.3 - the catch of the day
Chica.3 - the catch of the day
22/01/2023

Chica.3 - the catch of the day

the catch of the day 5th by Luciano catch of the day. read more...


Mistral of Portsmouth - Getting to the San Blas Archipelago
Mistral of Portsmouth - Getting to the San Blas Archipelago
Mistral of Portsmouth - Getting to the San Blas Archipelago
Mistral of Portsmouth - Getting to the San Blas Archipelago
21/01/2023

Mistral of Portsmouth - Getting to the San Blas Archipelago

As planned, we crossed the finishing line at very close to 7am, our estimated ETA … Chris and Tim very happy.  I can’t help feeling that we are not acting totally in the spirit of the competition! We slowed down through the night to make sure we got to the islands after sunrise and by some miracle, the line appeared when we hoped it might!   Another hour or so later we approached East Hollandaise Cays - the most eastward of the islands (there are 378). We anchored in an open lagoon area surrounded by idyllic paradise islands - each one with reefs and the most beautiful blue/aquamarine/turquoise seas. We are in paradise.    After sleeping and recovering from our passage, we spent the afternoon exploring the island in the tender. We found a shack selling beer for $2 a. read more...


Mistral of Portsmouth - Santa Marta
Mistral of Portsmouth - Santa Marta
Mistral of Portsmouth - Santa Marta
Mistral of Portsmouth - Santa Marta
Maroro - Leg 2, Day 2 Morning
Maroro - Leg 2, Day 2 Morning
Maroro - Leg 2, Day 2 Morning
Maroro - Leg 2, Day 2 Morning
19/01/2023

Mistral of Portsmouth - Santa Marta

Well - what a place! Big buzz, cool vibe, super hot temperatures! We loved it. Lots of breeze in the marina which was modern, clean and friendly. The marina sits at the edge of the old town which has a permanent carnival atmosphere - loud, colourful and relaxed. The streets are narrow, incredibly badly kept (pot holes, broken pavements) and carry hundreds of mad motor bikes and many small, old and battered cars. Electric cables form a birds nest at every corner. Restaurants carry signs confirming no guns inside (thank goodness for that!). Music comes at you from every direction - occasionally, total sensory overload!Chris and I did a half day city tour with other sailing crew … out of the city to see a national park with the Sierra Nevada mountains in the distance. The park was a. read more...


19/01/2023

Maroro - Leg 2, Day 2 Morning

Big wind and big seas welcomed us yesterday as the fleet left Santa Marta. Such a pretty day to sail! We had an uneventful, quiet afternoon, settling into the rhythm of cruising mode. We are purposefully sailing conservatively and relatively slowly…aiming to make it to our destination in daylight the morning of Day 3. We were treated to a spectacular sunset, the fiery ball of a Sun plopped ever so quietly over the horizon, leaving a pink stained sky behind it. The moon soon followed the path forged by the sun, this time just a sliver of light. Imanol was treated to a shooting star in the middle of the night. At 4 am (just when Annie arrived for her night shift) the autopilot decided not to work… it wasn’t until Simon came back to the wheel at 7am that it decided to fire back up. Ander,. read more...


15/01/2023

Mistral of Portsmouth - Day 6 - Crossing the finishing line

After our fish catching excitement, we began to get ourselves ready for the finishing line … what excitement after 6 days at sea! Decks cleared, shoes and gloves on, briefing from the Captain on the sail plan for the last 5 miles.I should mention that at the beginning of the passage, we were asked to estimate our arrival time. Chris had guessed at 5pm local time on Thursday … unbelievably, it looked as though we would be close to this. Of course, as this realisation dawned, so did the ambition to make the time across the line as close to 5pm as possible! We turned our last corner around the coast 5 miles away from Santa Marta - all sails out with a small reef taken on the Genoa (power sail that drives the boat). And wow … the wind accelerated from 12 knots to 28 knots … we acted fast to. read more...


Mistral of Portsmouth - Day 6 - Crossing the finishing line
Mistral of Portsmouth - Day 6 - Crossing the finishing line
Mistral of Portsmouth - Day 5 - Santa Marta is within reach!
Mistral of Portsmouth - Day 5 - Santa Marta is within reach!
12/01/2023

Mistral of Portsmouth - Day 5 - Santa Marta is within reach!

Another uneventful night - good, as we are all starting to feel tired by the end of our watches. The wind was a consistent force 4 to 5 (between 12 and 20 knots) and we are back close to the rhumb line. The day promises to be another beautiful one and it started with big excitement at 8.30 in the morning - I saw whales! First sight was lots of activity in the water off the starboard bow and then spumes of water with 2 sightings of bodies emerging … the activity moved down the side of the boat and to our stern … sadly, no pictures as it all happened so fast. Still - we know they were there!The routine of the passage is well set by now. Daily deck checks have revealed some issues that will need attention when we reach land … a bent stanchion, the vang not holding pressure (we think an. read more...


Mistral of Portsmouth - Day 4 - 340 nm to go!
Mistral of Portsmouth - Day 4 - 340 nm to go!
Maroro - Day 5, Finally Grooving
Maroro - Day 5, Finally Grooving
Maroro - Day 5, Finally Grooving
Maroro - Day 5, Finally Grooving
Maroro - Day 5, Finally Grooving
Maroro - Day 5, Finally Grooving
11/01/2023

Mistral of Portsmouth - Day 4 - 340 nm to go!

After a delicious paella, we are into our night watch routine. The wind is being kind to us - another quiet night without incident although there is quite a bit of rock and roll going on. At about 1am, we changed sail plan and changed course. We had been slowly working our way west toward the Venezuela coastline - not a safe place to be with a reputation for pirates. So we pulled in the mainsail and headed north west on a reach with the Genoa and Staysail. With only the fore sails out, the boat is not so well balanced - lots of rocking means lots of rolling across the beds and not much sleep! However, my watch from 4am to 7am was beautiful - it was as though someone switched the light on as the moon rose into the starry sky. The fishing line has gone out early today - we’re hoping that. read more...


11/01/2023

Maroro - Day 5, Finally Grooving

So far, we’ve had both a lovely crossing as well as one full of small frustrations that have kept us on our toes. In between little shots of anxiety/adrenaline we’ve also enjoyed our family time together: cooking, eating, school work, drawing, paper-plane-flying contests…some of us started the new Netflix series “Wednesday,” (Can’t wait to get to land and download more episodes!)We’ve enjoyed the full-moon light at night, illuminating even the interior of the boat with incredible intensity. When partly cloudy skies clear, they boast a clarity of starlight as well. While the Atlantic crossing was so dark we could see the Milky Way spray against the sky, the stars were slightly out of focus due to moisture particles in the air (bigger seas and waves). This week they are in focus, seemingly. read more...


Mistral of Portsmouth - Day 3 - 480 nm to go
Mistral of Portsmouth - Day 3 - 480 nm to go
10/01/2023

Renegade - Leg 1, Days 3-4

It's 04:00 on day 4 and I have the watch while Julie and Peter get some rest.I have good wind at 15-20 kts.It's been from the east all day, but there is a rain cloud sneaking up behind me right now and pushing it southeast.Not a problem at all, the boat needs a rinse.There's a big container ship on the horizon that will pass about 2 miles ahead of us, fairly close by ocean standards. We had some excitement yesterday just before sunset.We were sailing wing and wing with the genoa poled out on the opposite side from the mainsail.I wanted to switch sides, moving genoa over to port and main to starboard, so we can make more progress south.This maneuver is complicated by the pole, which has to be taken down and then set up on the other side, and we only had a short time before sunset.Peter. read more...


10/01/2023

Mistral of Portsmouth - Day 3 - 480 nm to go

Another peaceful night. The wind dropped and we moved quietly across the Caribbean Sea at 5.5 to 7 knots through the night. The moon is still quite full so good visibility, a star covered sky and clouds easy to see. We continue with our sail plan of 3 white sails goose-winged so the wind can push us forward.Today is a special day as it’s Jane’s 60th birthday. I managed to deck the saloon with some balloons at 4am after my watch and we had a freshly made lemon drizzle cake for Jane’s birthday cake along with a celebratory drink of Canarian rum - we have marked the occasion and will celebrate in style in Santa Marta. Jane is still not feeling 100% so she’s putting a brave face on it all. The last place you want to be when you’re feeling poorly is the middle of the ocean on a boat!Today we. read more...


Mistral of Portsmouth - Day 2 - 164 miles completed; 680 miles to go
Mistral of Portsmouth - Day 2 - 164 miles completed; 680 miles to go
08/01/2023

Maroro - World Arc Start - Day 1

We are Maroro - a 52S Lagoon Catamaran with a Spanglish family aboard: Annie, Imanol and kids Ander 12, Jokin, 10, Kai 8, as well as our practically adopted Argentine, Simon. We started our journey in June, leaving our home town of Cancun Mexico to fly to La Rochelle France and move aboard our new floating home. After many adventures and a few misadventures, we made our way to Las Palmas in November to join the ARC+ Rally. On the crossing, we decided that our plan to sail around the world would be better done in the company of a floating community and we signed up for the World ARC at the last minute, end of December. Saturday morning started early - last minute errands and goodbyes to be made. And then, like everyone else, we waved said, see you next year St Lucia!, heading into the. read more...


Maroro - World Arc Start - Day 1
Maroro - World Arc Start - Day 1
Maroro - World Arc Start - Day 1
Maroro - World Arc Start - Day 1
Maroro - World Arc Start - Day 1
Maroro - World Arc Start - Day 1
Maroro - World Arc Start - Day 1
Maroro - World Arc Start - Day 1
08/01/2023

Mistral of Portsmouth - Day 2 - 164 miles completed; 680 miles to go

I am pleased to report a quiet night! Chris was SSB radio controller last night - he made contact with11 boats … everyone is still fairly close together and all reported a good first day.Jane had prepared a delicious cottage pie eaten with a glorious sun set as the backdrop. Our watch system started with Tim & Jane at 7pm. We are doing 3 x 3 hour watch rotation. So far so good except that Jane is still feeling poorly and no amount of beechams powders, paracetamol and strepsils are working. Bed rest is the order of the day.The morning boat inspection revealed just one flying fish - sails,lines, bolts and split pins all appear to be in working order - thank goodness! A couple of small rain showers in the night with mostly 13 to 18 knots of wind and a 2m swelll - fabulous sailing and. read more...


Mistral of Portsmouth - Day 1 - Saint Lucia to Santa Marta, Columbia
Mistral of Portsmouth - Day 1 - Saint Lucia to Santa Marta, Columbia
07/01/2023

Mistral of Portsmouth - Day 1 - Saint Lucia to Santa Marta, Columbia

The day dawned! We were up early, topping up with water, paying final bills, tying everything down below decks and doing a final check on deck. Lots of activity along the pontoons - the excitement was palpable. We left the pontoon early enough to do some man over board practice before checking out the start line. Captain P did well - we were with the first half dozen crossing the line - what a sight! 20 boats starting with a couple coming on later and several joining us in Panama - we will be 26 in total. We’ve got light winds and have all our white sails out. So far so good!Unfortunately, Jane is under the weather with a cough/cold but is stoic. We’re excited about our upcoming adventure!Karen & Chris. read more...



1