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Namani at Sea
The travels of Nana, Markus and Nick aboard Namani
Still beating to windward...
Wind SW@20kn
03-Apr-2012, Under way to the Marquesas, S01-46 W090-41

Spent much of our time going N and S today, to make a little westing with the wind on the nose .. slow progress, despite making 5-6kn. At least we're sailing! All is well aboard, stay tuned...

09 - Pacific Crossing
Close reaching to the Marquesas
Wind SSW@10kn
03-Apr-2012, Under way to the Marquesas, S01-43 W089-54

We weighed anchor yesterday (Monday, 02APR) at 1200 local time (1800 utc) after one last food shopping run into town in the morning. After sailing west on a close reach for a few hours (7+kn over ground in 12kn of wind with a big push from the current...) we eventually had to tack to get clear of the islands and are now close reaching on a starboard tack - actually going SSE (the Marquesas are WSW...). No complaints though - we got enough wind to sail at 5.5 kn on pretty flat seas and hope to tack back to go west once we reach 2S in a few hours.

Wigwam, our anchor neighbors from Cristobal, left earlier yesterday morning, bound for Easter Island. Rhapsody, with James and Matthew aboard, left a few hours ahead of us. We had brief VHF contact with both during the afternoon and plan to re-connect on SSB today. There are now two little SSB nets that have emerged over the past days for boatois from the Galapagos to the Marquesas: At 1600 on 8143 kHz utc the "POST Net" (named after an unanimous vote today as "Pacific Ocean Sailing Tribe Net") which currently connects 5-6 English speaking vessels. At 1800 utc the DACH-Net (German speaking vessels) meets on 8137 kHz. There are probably many more, including the well established Pacific Seafarers' Net on which we heard John on Arctic Tern III on Sunday evening (he had left from Mexico a couple of weeks ago, also bound for the Marquesas). It's a nice way to break up the day and reassuring to stay in touch with others out there.

We were getting out the warm jackets when the temperature dropped to a freezing 26°C (about 80F) in the rain yesterday afternoon. How will we ever be able to move back to the "temperate latitudes" some day... In any case: still about 3000nm to go, all is well aboard, stay tuned...

09 - Pacific Crossing
Ready to go...
29-Mar-2012, Anchored off Cristobal, Galapagos

A quick update on our (hopefully) last full day here in the Galapagos. If nothing unexpected happens, we will weigh anchor here somtime tomorrow morning (Mon, 02APR) and head for the Marquesas. The weather over the past week has been a bit "unseasonal". Boats that left about a week ago were drifting backwards in light airs and contrary currents or were close reaching against SW winds (as Bill pointed out: "that's not what the Crosby, Stills and Nash song says!", referring to "Southern Cross"). We are very lucky in that we can benefit from the reports from those first departees (thanks Sophie, Astarté and Stolen Kiss!). The current now seems to be back to normal (i.e. a solid westerly set down to about 6S) and while there is still plenty of tropical shower activity around, we hope that we will have enough sailable wind to make it to about 6S, where something that resembles trade winds appears to set in. Thanks to Greg and Clementine from Eol we now also have a means of accessing Meteo France's current forecast model, which is a big help.

We had a very nice last week here in Cristobal. Nicky had a great time playing with Matthiue and Lea from the French catamaran "Eol". Now he has a real incentive to pick up some French so he can stay in touch with them via email until we can hopefully meet again somewhere in Polynesia (they will spend another month in the Galapagos). We also had a very nice dinner aboard Malamock, the boat of our French neighbors Alain, Veronique and Mathilde, their 13-year old daughter. Alain (a professional welder and shipbuilder) had built Malamock himself and sailed/lived aboard her for almost 30 years while going to all the places "off the beaten track". A wonderful boat and family, making us realize how much we can barely "scratch the surface" of what's out there to explore during our two years of sailing (no regrets and no complaints though!).

Nicky was lucky and he got to spend another day with Danielle and Maytal on Cristobal when they came to visit from St. Cruz (he had met them during the 4-day tour he and mami went on last week). Last night finally had a dinner of all the German speaking boats in the anchorage (>10), discussing times and frequencies for a daily check-in on SSB. While the 3000nm/4-week leg to the Galapagos certainly is a long one, we look forward to be moving again. Stay tuned...

09 - Pacific Crossing

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