24 October 2014 | Porto Kheli
We left Agios Nikolais Tuesday early afternoon and motored to the North into the wind. We had a 2 days weather window, which should give us enough time to reach the Peleponnes. Once out of the bay, we changed our course to Northwest and hoisted the mainsail to the first reef and continued motorsailing during the evening and most of the night. There was little wind during the night, but around 4 am it picked up again from the South.We stopped the engine, unfurled the geneoa and sailed during the night. I tried to start the generator to charge the batteries and run the freezer, but it died after a few minutes. I did not want to deal with it, as it was too uncomfortable to work down below.
The sailing was getting more and more exciting. Later I read from our log, that the maximum SOG was 11 kn. Sometimes Southwest of Milos, we decided it was too exciting and we furled the genoa, put in the second reef of the main sail and unfurled the staysail. It was the right decision: a few hours later we had constantly around 30 kn wind. The boat slowed down, but was more comfortable now.
It was already dark, when we approached the channel between Spetsai Island and the mainland. Here the conditions were more benign. We continued to the entrance to the bay of Port Kehli, dropped all sails and started the engine. 2 minutes later the cooling water alarm went on. Switched off the engine, checked the cooling water, unfurled the staysail to keep the boat under control. After I topped up the cooling water, we started the engine, but soon the same problem again. As the wind was much weaker now, we sailed with only the staysail into the bay and dropped the anchor in 4 m depth around 1:30 am.
After several hours of sleep I started to work on the generator problem: changed the fuel filter, bleed the lines and eventually after dinner it was running again. We could charge the batteries and run the frige. But this morning after running it again for 10 minutes it went off again. The problem is too much slug in the tanks, which have blocked the lines, when we did our bumpy sailing.
Today it was very windy in the bay: but the holding is good and there is not too much swell. Waves and wind are from the same direction, hence it is quiet okay in board.
This afternoon a front with heavy rain and a thunderstorm went through, must have been 40 kn or more. Lightning did strike our mast and did kill some of the electronics. The rain was coming down so heavy, we could see only for a few meters. Later it was more friendly and I went on deck to let out 20m more of anchor chain: you never know. I noticed a fishing boat run aground 500 m away from us. Not sure it was already there yesterday. A lot of debris was floating by, including a surf board.
Even the conditions are so bad outside, inside Laroobaa we feel comfortable: good food, good wine, internet, books, music. The boat is rolling a little bit, but that is okay.
But now there are many things to do in the coming days: fix the cooling system of the engine, clean the tanks, restart the generator, fix the electronics. I wonder how long this will take.