Right turn towards the Marquesas08-Apr-2012, Under way to the Marquesas, S06-37 W094-02
The wind did pick up a bit and has steadied once we reached about 6 deg S, so we could finally make that "right turn" and are now sailing more or less directly towards the Marquesas. Skies are still mostly overcast but we hope this will break up as we go further WSW. Nicky built a very cool sailboat out of Lego over the past two days - a cutter rigged sloop, complete with functioning roller reefing foresail, winches and all. Now the challenge is to keep it in one piece while the boat rolls with the waves ... ;-) All is well aboard, stay tuned...
A nice sailing day07-Apr-2012, Under way to the Marquesas, S05-29 W092-16
Friday (06APR) turned out to be a very nice sailing day - and it still is now, a few minutes past midnight under a full moon and a few scattered clouds. While we had to motor through much of last night (Thursday into Friday), the wind picked up around 9am local time this morning, and we had some very nice sailing, close reaching under sunny skies over a gentle swell (plus some help from the current). Sun glasses out for the first time since leaving Cristobal! The wind was out of SSE, but still a bit too light for broad reaching on a direct course to the Marquesas. Hence we continue to go SSW..SW, hoping that the wind will pick up a bit and we finally can start to run with it. All is well aboard, stay tuned...
Looking for the trades...06-Apr-2012, Under way to the Marquesas, S04-08 W091-28
We had a post with the same title during our Atlantic crossing about five years ago...here we are again, this time trying to get into the South Pacific trade winds. After clearing the southernmost islands of the Galapagos on a tack to SSE during Monday night, we tacked to the west and made good progress until Tuesday (03APR, "Day 2"), 5pm local time, along 2°S. After that we had a bit of a frustrating 24 hours during which we logged 120nm, only to end up 6nm west of our 02PAR 1700 position on 03APR at 5pm... between beating into shifting 20kn headwinds, a now contrary current (setting east at 1+kn) and heavy rain, it looked like we were sailing against a wall that blocked any progress to the SW - we actually kept tacking through 160°... Hence, by 11am on Wednesday we had decided to forget about any progress to the SW at this latitude and to stay on a SE'erly tack until we get into better wind (i. e. something that resembles SE'erly trade winds). The wind dropped and the rain stopped sometime on Wednesday afternoon and since Wednesday night we've had a mix of motoring and sailing in light winds towards SSW. We had a relaxing Thursday (05APR), catching up on some sleep and enjoying life on board Namani. We even took our first sun sights (only partial cloud cover!) and shot some stars/planets earlier tonight (full moon with a decent horizon and Mars + some bright stars visible). It now (4:30am local on Friday) looks like we will have to go to about 6° S to get into better wind - about another 24hrs. All is well aboard, stay tuned...
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Namani at Sea Impression