Out of soundings ...Markus
12-Nov-2011, En route from Charleston NC, towards Bahamas and/or Jamaica
We slipped our berth in Charleston at 14:20 yesterday (Friday), only to have the engine cut out on us when motoring down the channel in Charleston harbor. After sailing up to anchor (dutifully disconnected from the chain just hours ago to seal the hawse hole for the passage ..), inspecting the fuel system bit by bit and changing filters, Barry - a friendly mechanic - saved us at 4 pm on a Friday afternoon. He pin-pointed the problem to air in the fuel system, resulting from us disconnecting an old diesel heater (never used by us and hopefully not needed again where we're going) this morning. After thoroughly bleeding everything, the good old Kubota was up and running again and we made our second attempt to leave at 5:35 pm, just at sunset (unfortunately, we had the tide against us by now...). We got out of harbor, weaved through some container ships and now are motorsailing along, hoping to enter the Gulf Stream between 10 and 11 am today at 31-50N 78-20W. We're out of soundings at last! All is well aboard - stay tuned...
Ready to go?Nana
10-Nov-2011, Charlestown, South Carolina
For the past weeks we have been glued to the weather report, first observing patterns and now planning our departure from the US to the Caribbean. Hopefully, there's a window opening soon and we hope to jump through it. Here is a synopsis of our position (figuratively): we want to get to Panama as quickly as possible, making short pit stops only as necessary in the Bahamas and Jamaica. And we have to get to Panama soon in order to enjoy the San Blas islands and other Panama highlights without rushing straight through the canal. The thing is, if we don't get to Panama by Christmas, we probably won't be able to make it until April, because between late December and late March the so-called Christmas winds (very strong winds) kick in and make a crossing of the central Caribbean inadvisable.
09-Nov-2011, N33-20.6 W78-00.7, en-route from Beaufort, NC, to Charleston, SC
Slipped our lines at Beaufort Docks yesterday afternoon and are now past Cape Fear, about 30 nm offshore. Recent weather development has played havoc with our plan to depart Beaufort last weekend for a Gulf Stream crossing (more on that in a separate post...). Now it looks that we will leave from Charleston Friday afternoon or Saturday morning and head first East and then South towards the Caribbean. A bumpy ride last night between SE swell and NE wind chop but now seas seem to be sorting themelves out a bit. All is well aboard - stay tuned...
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