Aroundoceans with SV Emerald Sea

Our journey on water

25 March 2018 | Victoria. British Columbia
05 October 2017 | Victoria BC
24 August 2017 | Victoria, British Columbia, Canada
27 July 2017 | Reeds Bay, Hilo, Hawaii
10 July 2017 | Reeds Bay, Hilo, Hawaii
22 June 2017 | Bora Bora, French Polynesia
18 June 2017 | Bora Bora, French Polynesia
12 June 2017 | Humane, French Polynesia
05 June 2017 | Moorea, French Polynesia
05 June 2017 | Tahiti
07 May 2017 | Tahiti, French Polynesia
21 April 2017 | Fakarava, Tuamotu's, French Polynesia
05 April 2017 | Tahanea Atoll. Tuamotu's, French Polynesia
05 April 2017 | Makemo Atoll, Tuamotu's, French Polynesia
07 March 2017 | Rikitea, Mangareva, Gambier Islands, French Polynesia
20 February 2017 | Rikitea, Gambier Islands, French Polynesia
14 January 2017 | Playita, Panama City, Panama
02 January 2017 | La Plait, Panama City
17 December 2016 | Isla Nargana
16 December 2016 | San Blas, Panama

Passage: Boddam Island Chagos to Port Louis Mauritius

29 May 2015 | Port Louis, Mauritius
Route Summary:
Departure Time/Date: 13:00, 20 May 2015
Arrival Time/Date: 14:00hrs, 29 May 2015
Total Distance: 1385 Nm
Passage Time: 9 days, 2 hrs
Average Speed: 8 kts

Day 1: 20 May 2015 - Passage Chagos to Mauritius

Finally a weather window allowing us to leave even though it meant motoring for a day or two to get south of the spasmodic ITCZ and into the steady and seasonal ESE winds which would carry us to Mauritius. We left Boddam Island at 1300hrs along with SV Lop To, Silver Girl and Yolo who are each heading to Rodrigues. They took the easterly route around Boddam and south along Diego Garcia where I took the westerly route from Boddam. We all remain in touch twice a day on a HF radio net to review our positions, weather and operational status.

And what a delight during a departure.... SV Papillon gave us a farewell package of pears, carrots and SV Paka Tea and family came out to the channel by dingy with a bundle of bananas for us all - thanks! We shared Boddam with a remarkable bunch of folks - how fortunate we were.

We continued motoring into the next day switching between engines and running approx 1800RPM which gave us an average speed to 6+kts. Large cumulonimbus clouds and squalls abound and we near crossed paths with one huge grandpa moving toward us but managed to only get a light wash as we ran up both engines and 8.5kts to get on his better side.

Operationally, Emerald is running 100% and we left with approx 800L fuel. My Pactor modem is down and will need support from Germany to have this repaired so no emails over the SSB. In fact I haven't any Wx forecasts at all - except the excellent support from SV Lop To's Kirsten and Helmut during our HF net twice a day (we are not alone!!).

Position after 24hrs (13:00hrs): 06 57'S; 070 47'E
Average speed (SOG): 6kts
Max speed (SOG): 8.5kts (motors)
Distance over 24hr period: 145 Nm

Day 2: 21 May 2015 - Passage Chagos to Mauritius

People tend to think that cruising and sailing is an endless series of adventures where the reality is that 50% is hard graft and 50% is excitement of new locations, seas, new friends. The outside world reads of these excitements but often don't hear about the efforts needed to keep boats maintained and operating safely, afloat, dodging of gales and squalls and its only the couple onboard that performs this work. Eight days of passaging boils down to a few hours of plots on the chart and weather reviews. Hours are spent reviewing the boat for the next potential breakdown disaster, preparing a backup method or checking systems over and over to ensure they don't surprise you. Take today, during trimming of the main, I pulled down too hard on the main sheet and snapped the small diameter line that connects the main's clew to the end of the boom. This line is actually a weak-link and I had earlier installed a heavier back-up line to catch the sail, so not all was lost. It could of gone south.

The night was quiet and the first night shift was a bit long as we start to get into the rhythm again. We set the main to the 2nd reef as I thought if I land into such a large squall as earlier then we could see 40+kts. We would also be motoring into the night anyway so just as well to set a reduced main and not worry about further reductions.

Overall, the night and day were a mix of very light to moderate winds where we sailed, motored and motor-sailed - and no squalls. After midday at 7 deg S, light south easterlies seemed to have kicked in with steady 10-15kts and moving us along at 6-7kts (sans motors). The current is negligible.

Position after 24hrs (13:00hrs): 09 16'S; 69 43'E
Average speed (SOG): 6kts
Max speed (SOG): 8kts
Distance over 24hr period: 167Nm

Day 3: 22 May 2015 - Passage Chagos to Mauritius

Most of day 3 saw the lighter winds ENE rather than E or ESE and we are unintentionally making a course more toward Rodrigues than Mauritius to get the wind behind the beam and make some speed. We also raised the gennaker up for an extra knot.

Position after 24hrs (13:00hrs): 11 00'S; 68 27'E
Average speed (SOG): 6kts
Max speed (SOG): 7kts
Distance over 24hr period: 147Nm

Day 4: 23 May 2015 - Passage Chagos to Mauritius

During the dark night the winds died off to average 5kts and turned ENE and we are back with the motor on and it's remained this way during the day. It will be a slow day and likely tomorrow too. Earlier, our friends on SV Lop To provided me with an uninspiring forecast of 10kts for the next 4-5 days so I did a quick fuel check to ensure I could motor all the way into Port Louis if needed. Some sailor's philosophy is to sail with minimal engine time, others is to get from A to B asap. Ours is to maintain a reasonable speed with sail or motor but no less than 6kts. We have enough fuel.

Position after 24hrs (13:00hrs): 12 20'S; 66 50'E
Average speed (SOG): 6.2kts
Max speed (SOG): 7kts
Distance over 24hr period: 150Nm

Day 5: 24 May 2015 - Passage Chagos to Mauritius

Low winds as per forecast which have been insufficient to get the main up so it's a day of prop pushing with the occasional shove with the genoa or genaker.

We've been enjoying Lonely Planet books for Mauritius and Reunion, planning a bit of hiking and sightseeing - getting some exercise in. I also have a long list of To Do's and To Buy's to get through. A yacht is a hole in the deep ocean of your pocket!

The equatorial current is also favorably brushing up on our beam at about 0.5kt - the icing on the cake - how sweet that is.

Position after 24hrs (13:00hrs): 14 02'S; 060 53'E
Average speed (SOG): 6.5kts
Max speed (SOG): 8.5kts
Distance over 24hr period: 155Nm

Day 6: 25 May 2015 - Passage Chagos to Mauritius

Been reading the logs from the 1999 Boxing day Sydney to Hobart yacht race - what a disaster that was as yachts rolled, sank and men died in the aftermath of, what was effectively, a cyclone. Not sure this is good reading when passaging or inspiring therapy to keep you on the ball regarding weather forecasts and vessel preparedness. I tend to lean toward the latter. Neptune can certainly rain down terror on you if you're in the wrong place at the wrong time no matter how strong your boat is, as seen by some of the multi-million dollar high tech boats in this race or crew strength. Racing is certainly a different mind set.

Winds picked up in the early hours of the day, perfectly positioned at 120 deg off the port beam and with a reef in we have averaged 7kts and maxed at 8.5kts. Can we keep this up?

Position after 24hrs (13:00hrs): 16 01'S; 062 25'E
Average speed (SOG): 8.4kts
Max speed (SOG): 11.0kts
Distance over 24hr period: 209Nm

Day 7: 26 May 2015 - Passage Chagos to Mauritius

Completed 209Nm in 24hrs with 28-35kts at 120 deg port tack with 2 reefs in the main and 60% genoa.

The forecast calls for 15-20kts for the next 3 days but we are witnessing significantly more wind. SV Antje and Zephyr I know would like some of this wind as they head westerly to Madagascar and Seychelles respectively with only slight breezes.

I have a wee concern that we will be windward onto the Cargados Carajos Shoals and Soudan Bank tomorrow and have thus altered a course that maintains 50-60Nm off their reefs. A recent Volvo race boat grounding last year rings a bell.

Position after 24hrs (13:00hrs): 13 09'S; 059 54'E
Average speed (SOG): 9.1kts
Max speed (SOG): 11.2kts
Distance over 24hr period: 219Nm

Day 8: 27 May 2015 - Passage Chagos to Mauritius

And the sailing is grande as we slice through the two shades of blue vistas in 22kts on a beam reach. We completed 219Nm today with the same sailing conditions as yesterday. What gave us an extra few miles I think was raising the main from the 2nd to 1st reef since 7am and saw a few gains of SOG's on the odometer. Apart from that we read most of the day, passed the Cargados Carajos Shoals and saw our first ship on since leaving Chagos.

We certainly do enjoy the twice daily HF net check-ins with the other yachts cruising towards Rodrigues, Seychelles, Madagascar and Mauritius. Its good to hear friendly voices, knowing they are safe, knowing you're not all alone out here. SV Lop To's Helmut and Kirsten have done a great job of pulling everyone in and keeping it concise. Well done!

Position after 24hrs (13:00hrs): 19 54'S; 057 4'E
Average speed (SOG): 8kts
Max speed (SOG): 10kts
Distance over 24hr period: 172 Nm

Day 9: 28 May 2015 - Passage Chagos to Mauritius

Arrival in Mauritius! It was a 179Nm day concluding with the passage into Port Louis, clearing in (no fees) at the end of the port and then moving Emerald over the Caudan Basin (marina) where she will be parked for a few weeks (MR350/day for a 14m boat, no catamaran width penalties, inclusive water/electricity). Looks like we got here just in time as the boats are starting to pile in and raft up.

Well done Emerald. You will deserve the thorough washdown and desalting I'll give you in the morning!

Position after 24hrs (13:00hrs): 20 09'S; 057 28'E
Average speed (SOG): 5kts
Max speed (SOG): 7kts
Distance over 24hr period: 21Nm
Vessel Name: Emerald Sea
Vessel Make/Model: Lagoon 450
Hailing Port: Singapore
Crew: Steve P, Rosemarie P
This site charts the adventures and misadventures of our family and hopefully share some of the practical tips and tricks that we picked up along the way. As our experiences grows so will the site as we share with you our aroundoceans journey. [...]
We untied the ropes from Keppel Marina in Singapore in August 2014 and haven't looked back. Across the Indian and around South Africa into the South Atlantic Oceans, the leeward Caribbean and South Pacific....with many stops along the way. And now, perhaps finally for this chapter, British [...]
Emerald Sea's Photos - Main
Photos 1 to 10 of 10
Keeping our carbon footprint to a minimum! Solar array extending over cockpit.
Clean fuel is essential to a maintenance free engine. Racor Dual 500s with vacuum gauge. We use 5 and 10 micron filters.
Emerald from aft - offshore Singapore.
Axel with baracudda.
Axel installing the Ocean Safety life raft. This is an ISO Ocean series and one we hope never to use!
Axel underwater following turtles at Tioman.
Solar frame mount showing the upper supports.
Aft view during the solar system installation.
The storm jib being installed.  We will be seen!  Sail blogs took an upright photo and rotated it!
Hawaii was a stop over on our way to Canada however we were pleasantly surprised and enjoyed our 3 weeks in Big Hawaii.
13 Photos
Created 27 July 2017
No Photos
Created 27 July 2017
A selection from 1000's of photos from out 6 months in French Polynesia. But were missing the photos from Gambier, Makemo, Tahanea.....
17 Photos
Created 27 July 2017
We transited the Panama Canal on 30-31st December 2016.
20 Photos
Created 2 January 2017
5 Photos
Created 17 December 2016
Barbados, Martinique, St Vincent & the Grenadines, Grenada. A few of our photos captured here.
10 Photos
Created 22 October 2016
Photo fun...
3 Photos
Created 1 May 2016
10-15 April 2016
5 Photos
Created 1 May 2016
What doesn't fit into the albums will be found here....
15 Photos
Created 20 December 2015
26 June to 13 July 2015
16 Photos
Created 28 July 2015
5 February to 13 May 2015
17 Photos
Created 28 July 2015
17 July to 12 October 2015
16 Photos
Created 28 July 2015
29 May to 25 June 2015
20 Photos
Created 28 July 2015
16 April to 20 May 2015
18 Photos
Created 31 May 2015
Photos from Singapore to Langkawi
7 Photos
Created 12 November 2014
Our first 2 weeks out in East Malaysia (Sept 14)
5 Photos
Created 18 September 2014
Our Bon voyage party with our yachtie neighbors.
3 Photos
Created 24 August 2014
In June 14 we sailed up to Pulau Tioman for our first journey of living on this new boat and trialing new equipment including the drogue system, storm jib, solar system and other vessel installations.
6 Photos
Created 17 July 2014