08 May 2008 | Contadora, Las Perlas
We took a down day today. I was feeling a lot better after a good nights sleep, an obnoxious grinding in my right side from time to time as the bones move around but otherwise sound and hail. The Offshore Doctor says breath deeply and take it easy for a week or 6. Every time I tried to clean up a line or straighten up a locker, Ed or Nobu would push me out of the way and do it for me. I could get used to this.
It was a nice calm, but hot, day in the Contadora anchorage. The wind normally blows gently from the north but it can come from any direction as the ITCZ moves around. You also have tidal currents that over power the wind running along the island.
It is tricky finding a spot to anchor in close because there are moorings everywhere. There are a few spots in the field you can hook up but you have to watch how you swing so that you don't wrap a mooring line around your rudder. The moorings range from a big ship float to tires. I wouldn't tie up to one without diving on it. The air strip approach is also right over the area so you have to keep big sticks out of the flight path.
We have been tracking weather with an eye toward shooting across to the Galapagos. The ITCZ is at about 5 degrees north which is 3 degrees south of our current position. The ITCZ represents no weather or disturbed weather depending on your luck. We have been hearing distant thunder for the past couple days but nothing too close. As we move south we'll get closer to the disturbance.
The next couple of days have a little too much wind on the nose in the Bay of Panama for a fun trip out to the Galapagos. The GFS GRIBs (Gridded Binary files used to visualize weather over an area) show 20 right at us on Saturday and the GFS is always 5 knots shy of the real wind. Sunday things look like they will settle down to 10 knots or less on the nose, which is often about as good as it gets for the early part of that trip. Tomorrow we will start moving into position so that we can jump on Sunday if the weather follows through.