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A family travels from Florida to New Zealand aboard their St Francis 50 catamaran
Las Perlas to Galapagos Day 5
05/26/2011, 00 33.25N 085 25.84W

263 miles to go. Yesterday was a great day, we sailed from 4 am to 2:30 pm and then once the wind shifted back to the SW we motored directly SW to take advantage of the fact it was forecast to be around 5 knots for the next 18 hours which means more than 5 knots but it was a comfortable night. Now we are just 33 miles north of the equator and poised to either motor sail or hopefully sail the rest of the way in depending on how much west is in the wind.

Las Perlas to Galagapos Day 4
05/25/2011, 02 08.77N 083 09.24W

424 miles to ago. Day 4 was painful, motoring right into 15-20 knots. During the night I had to keep reducing engine rpm's until we were just barely moving to keep the boat from crashing about. (read no sleep) But this morning which is the beginning of day 5 things are looking up. The engine was shut down at 4 am, the jib rolled out and we have been sailing for the past 1.5 hours within 10 degrees of our way point. We have a steady 15 knots from the south and even though we are tight on the wind and we are going at least 2 knots faster the ride has smoothed out nicely. On top of that the heavy cloud cover has lifted and the stars are shining.

05/25/2011 | chris flint
sounds like ur cutting thru it, keep her in the wind and headed toward ur goal, be safe

Las Perlas to Galapagos day 3
05/24/2011, 03 23.12N 081 29.63W

Yesterday morning after writing the blog which I am doing every morning at 6am by the way I was so sick of pounding into the waves I raised the sails, shut off the engine and told the crew we were heading directly for the Marquesas. That lasted for about an hour as we were only able to sail NW back up into the ITCZ which I was not keen on doing. So back to plan A , the Galapagos with a different strategy. Instead of motoring directly at our destination we would tack back and forth but still using the motor to enable us to point higher. Well it was more a comfortable ride and we covered a lot of miles but in the end after doing it all day we were still only 50 miles closer, the same as we would have been if we had motored directly towards the destination. At sunset we shut down the engine and sailed SSE all night loosing ground (VMG of -.5 to -2 knots all night) with the idea that we would not catch any nets in the prop if it was not turning. This has been our first night doing any speed since the log. The other reason to head south is looking for a favorable current which we have not found yet. Yesterday we passed a point on the chart that we had reached in March 08 after 34 hours sailing and no engine hours. This time we were at 60 hours, all of them with the engine on. Just pulled down the latest grib, shows we should have 5 knots from the west but we have 15-20 from the WSW. 547 miles to go.

05/24/2011 | Dionne Tremblay
Hey Dave!! sending you wind!! great blog, wow about the log... here's sending smooth sailing! Cheers from all of us on Orca III
05/24/2011 | Ted Gordon
Hang in there, Remember the one thing you can always count on is change, sounds like a little change in wind direction would be welcome right now! Praying for fair winds and no more logs, take care, Ted and Gail.
Las Perlas to ?
05/23/2011, 05 28.02N 081 42.45W

The wind picked up from the SW right on the nose and we bashed into it all day to make only 65 miles. By sunset we were only 15 miles past where we hit the log a little over a week ago. During the night we only make 32 miles for a total of 97 miles this 24 hour period. Something will have to change today; perhaps we shall sail west...thinking about it.

Las Perlas to Galapagos day 1
05/22/2011, 06 26.25N 080 26.40W

It may seen that this trip is not fun anymore reading the entries around Panama City. Well hopefully all that is behind us now. Yesterday was wonderful, we lifted anchor at 5:50am in order to get a good days run in before it was too dark to see. Again we saw quite a few logs but they started to thin out rapidly as the day went on. By 9am we had landed 2 large tuna and 4 Mahi Mahi as well as 3 bonito which we released. So tuna sushi for lunch and mahi mahi on the grill for diner. The day was filled with other sea life as well including seeing a marlin jump out of the water, a huge ray jump out of the water, turtles, mahi mahi jumping while chasing smaller fish, porpoise jumping and swimming under the bow, and numerous birds that stayed with us using our boat to scare the small flying fish out of the water at which point they would swoop down and grab them midair. We made 93 miles from 6am to 6pm and 44 miles from 6pm to 6am this morning due to keeping the speed down to 3 knot at night. The wind has been from 12 knots to 0 knots and blowing from dead astern to right on the nose during this first 24 hour period. No rain for the last few days which is unusual for this time of year around here. We still have another 50 miles to the area we hit the log on the first attempt so a sharp watch will be kept all day and then another slow night.

05/22/2011 | Jenny Mulligan
Fingers crossed, good luck, Great day of fishing , John will be jealous

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Who: David, Alec, Emilie, Nathalie
Port: Tavernier, Florida USA
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