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Sunrise: Chasing the dream
Life filled with adventure, both actual and spiritual.
Arrived
04/23/2012, Boca Chica, DR

We met this french boat heading west. Kids had a great time together. In this photo we are trying to advertise for Keens... who make a very good kids and adult shoe!

We have arrived in Boca Chica... more info later.

18 26.679'n 069 37.434'w

04/23/2012 | Uncle Readie
I'm not sure that longitude made it to the XPlot position mapper, because it shows you close to Timbuktu in Mali, west Africa. I think you're moored at Marina Zar-par in Boca Chica (marinazarpar.com).
04/24/2012 | gil
Good on you. Looks like a cozy spot. Where next ?
You going to keep going East when you can ? Got a plan or ???
Go for a 150 mile walk north through that beautiful
National forest and you will get to Samana.
Hugs to you all but especially to Isobel.
Finally around the cape
Bill
04/22/2012, South of Western DR

In the morning Isobel found that this flying fish had landed on our boat.

Well, we may have waited a day to long. We made it around the cape and the wind had died completely. Glassy seas with some rolling waves left over from the past few days of 20 knots. We have been headed to Barahona DR and have just made the decision to head further east to Boca Chica. We can take advantage of the calm seas to motor 90 miles further east. The prevailing winds here are from the east, so this will use some fuel but most likely save some days of waiting for weather. Of course we mist the oprotunity to sea this end of the south shore. From sea, the most dramatic thing right now is that the mountains come right down into the sea, whereas the cape was all very low land.

90 miles to Boca Chica should have us arriving in time for breakfast.

Current location: 17 59.776'n 071 03.844'w course 83 speed 6.4

an expedition
04/21/2012, isla Baeta

We took a walk to the north shore of Isla Baeta and it was spectacular. With over hanging rock and blow holes. This photo is of the beach in front of the village.

reading the same book!
04/20/2012

Lily and Paul read several books... together!

A few hours to windward
Bill
04/19/2012, Isla Beata, DR

the little fishing village on Isla Baeta is very welcoming. The coast guard captain sells Mangos. No one seems to think much of tourism here, welcoming us with a smile. Very nice spot.

Well, we can blame it on Paul.... he wanted some excitement, so we sailed to Isla Beata, about 14 miles. At first we thought we would sail out and take a look at the waves that were out in the sea.... We could see what we call "marching elephants" on the horizon... These indicate big waves... but when we reached the Capo Falso and looked out, we saw about 4-5' seas. They were kind of short close to the cape, but I knew that they would be less lumpy further out... and they were... and the wind backed round to the east so we could sail almost directly to the Isla Beata. It was up wind and, you may remember that "Gentlemen don't sail to weather" (or, we don't like to crash upwind... but we did for a while and as we left the cape behind and we closed on the Isla the conditions improved even though the wind was sustained well above 20 knots. We were fully reefed and cruising at 5 knots. Lily wasn't happy about the boat motion. Paul was excited and grabbed the GoPro and went forward on deck although after a while he became a little quiet... Of course Isobel and Lara were un-phased and after a little snack retired to the aft cabin for a nap. By 3 in the afternoon we were anchored off the little fishing village on the NW coast... we went ashore and met another boating family with a 5 year old girl. The officer of the coast gaurd was also the local Margo salesman... so we bought 24 mangos for about $6 (200 pesos). Isobel was finally able to check out some Iguanas, of which there were many... she was delighted when a fisherwoman feed them a bit of Plantain. It was a fun day, and we are a few more miles west... still waiting for the wind to moderate for the trip to Salinas, our next stiop. 17 36.747'n 071 31.609'w

A test sail
Bill
04/18/2012, West of Cape Beata, DR

Do we go or not? The winds pick up as we round Capo Falso.

We have all been feeling like moving on. Yes, the beach has been great... and yet there is another around the corner. We had seen photos of Isla Beata at the very point of the cape and so we made the boat ship shape and headed out in light winds. "it is like lake sailing" is what I said as we plinked along at 4.5 knots in 10 knots of wind NW on the beam...

As we neared Cape Falso, we could see white caps in the distance. We double reefed the main, prepared the genoa for furling and waited. As we approached the white caps the wind died and it was clear now that the white caps were caused by wind from the SE, which was on our nose once we rounded the cape... Then the wind filled in blowing 20 to 25 and as we proceeded, the seas also started to round the cape at about 5'... It would only be 14 miles, but that would be at least 3 hours of pounding... no one wanted that! So we tacked back to a nice beach south of Cabo Falso and dropped the anchor in 20' on a patch of sand, surrounded by coral. And that is where we sit! 17 47.408'n 071 39.691'w

We have not seen any other boats since we left Haiti, so we were excited to see a cruiser come in last night. They didn't respond to a radio call and left this morning headed south... Yet this afternoon we saw a boat leaving from where we are now anchored... to pound around the cape. We spoke on the radio to another headed into Bahia de Las Agillas and we have seen another Ketch sailing into the same bay. We have thought that we might move back over, just to be social... but it is late now. We will try again early tomorrow morning to head south when the land has not yet heated up to accentuate the gradient wind.

Our weather guy, Chris Parker of Caribbean Weather has told us to wait until the weekend before attempting to round the big Cape... so we will go to Isla Beata and wait until then...

04/18/2012 | Uncle Readie
To me it looks like you're north of Cabo Falso and south of Punta Chimanche.
Lots of power
Bill
04/16/2012, West of Cape Beata, DR

So, I may have written the last post without changing our location... we are still here 17 48.743'n 071 38.222'w

We are here because the wind is howling at between 20 and 35 knots. The beautiful beach to the east provides wonderful protection in addition to a spectacular view. And the wind gives us extra power. We generate all of our electricity with solar and wind. With the high winds we can generate more than we can use. So we are running our water maker (about 6 amps per hour), charging computers (about 6 amps for charging both)... those in addition to the fridge freezer running (about 3 amps)... and we are still running 10 amps into the batteries. This will be good as we had let the batteries get somewhat low. Up until recently, the solar had been able to keep the batteries 100% charged... really. This is because our Solar had originally been sized for the water maker. Now with the water maker we had not been able to bring the batteries up to 100% charged. Today, I think we will...

Yesterday, when we awoke there was a little fishing boat off our starbord beam about 30 yard. No one appeared to be on it... after a while we saw that indeed they were abord and infact had been sleeping. Lara and Isobel rowed over with some fruit for them. We then watched them as the hauled in their net and headed to a spot on the beach north of us. Later on the beach, Paul and I walked up the beach and talked to them. Apparently, they fish all night, when it is cool and rest and eat during the day in the shade of a tree. They offered to cook us a meal of Yuca, squash, rice and another root. We declined as they had already told us they were out here for 12 days , and their rations seemed very small. Then they take the boat 8 miles back to Perdenales for 4 days... and repeat. They were very nice and cheerful.

We will be here until the wind abates so we can have a smooth passage east around the Cape

Resetting the anchor
Bill
04/16/2012, West of Cape Beata, DR

Here we are in the cockpit playing Perudo, a dice game learned from our friends on Mayuva

Update on the spade anchor... but not really. We couldn't understand why our anchor wasn't setting well... and for the first time since we bought it we dragged our Spade!! It has been setting so well that I have given up diving on it, and our Dutch friends laughed at us for using the engine to set our Spade, a requirement for our old CQR.

So, with 30 to 35 knots we slowly dragged today... we waited until Isobel woke from her nap... and moved to a new sand patch to anchor closer to the beach. Once set, Paul and I dove on the anchor. We found that the anchor was on its side. Diving down we found that it was in about 5" of sand on top of flat hard rock... When we set it (sorry At), we pulled it about 4 feet creating a big pile of sand in front of it. Once we were confident of the new anchorage, we swam back to where the original anchorage spot was... we had dropped the anchor in 2" of sand!! at first glance we couldn't understand what the little double track was... it was the point of the anchor and the side of the anchor... it was dragging along, leaving a track in the little bit of sand on top of the rock. It had finally set in a little pool of sand that was around a solitary rock sitting on the bottom... then slowly dragged across the flat rock pulling sand with it. I guess that is worth noting about the anchorage on the ActiveCaptain.com site. We have heard that further north along the beach may be better holding. We wanted the scenery...

So, still there is something to credit the Spade. It held us in up to 30 knots and only dragged when the wind was over 30... in two inches of sand!!

04/17/2012 | Mom
So... how is it with extra hands on deck ie Lily and Paul!
A down day
Bill
04/16/2012, West of Cape Beata, DR

Early morning on the fore deck. Downward dog!

Still feels a little funny to not be moving... since we have been axious to move since we left Florida... so some down time is very good. I have actually read a little. Also, taken some time to analyze the Fridge/freezer set up. When we reworked the fridge the sensor for the freezer was moved to wall of the fridge that is next to the hull. With the east wind, that side of the boat is to the south, so the sun shines on it all day. I have found that the sensor may read 15 degrees while the temperature measured at the interior a few inches away is below zero! We are shooting for 8 degrees... so I am now playing with adjusting the temperature at the sensor to see what I can hold in the middle of the freezer. Of course, changing the freezer will affect the fridge, which has been running too cold... Of course all this has us know well that the fridge is not insulated well enough... Which is an issue since our new countertop is well adhered to the top of the firdge.

I also found that there was a build up of barnacles and other stuff on the heat exchanger on the outside of the boat, call a Keel cooler. I took care of that yesterday with mask and fins. Our concern now is our limited supply of fresh veggies... although we have plenty of other food on board.

Friends at the Market
04/13/2012

Isobel has no problem finding friends wherever we go. These girls shared bananas and taught Isobel to play something like jacks with black & white stones.

04/13/2012 | Uncle Readie
Wow, that's a lot of pretty photos to take in! So where are you guys now, with the great wifi?
04/13/2012 | Uncle Readie
I think the game Isobel played was "osselets" (oo-SLAY, French for "little bones"). The game was originally played with bones, thus the name.

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