Departure Delayed Due to No Wind
23 March 2016 | La Cruz, Banderas Bay, Mexico
This beautiful sunrise with lightly clouded skies, and no wind is definitely what we didn't want to see this morning! A Wednesday depature that looked great last week, has been looking increasingly each day as it got closer. Today, it is definitely a no-go.
Unfortunately, a weather system that has settled over our region means that there is not enough wind to get us offshore far enough to link with the more regular trade winds that will carry us to French Polynesia. We need a North wind that will hold for at least 3-5 days to get us to those trades. Right now, the wind is from the North but only at about 2-6 knots. Even for a catamaran, that is clearly not enough wind. Even worse, well offshore and in our path, the wind is predicted to go to zero over the weekend. I have been following other boats on the radio and several of them that did leave are sitting still, wallowing back and forth in the seas with no wind to move or steady them.
Why don't we leave in no wind? Well, we definitely don't have enough fuel to motor to where the wind is. We need to save our fuel for emergency use and to run the generator to power the electronics. Besides, sitting out there in no wind is hard on the boat. Even though there is no wind, the ocean waves are still there, and those waves will rock the boat back and forth, damaging the sails and making life aboard very uncomfortable.
The important point that we need to keep in mind is that we really don't have a set schedule. The best plan for us is to pick a weather window that gives us the most pleasant & safe trip. It is frustrating to sit around for another week, get all psyched up again, and clean the bottom one more time. But, that is ocean sailing for you. In this life, we truly are at the mercy of mother nature.
Looking at the long term weather forecast, our next potentail weather window is Monday to Wednesday next week. On Monday the wind will likely still be too light so we are going to target Tuesday. Keep your fingers crossed for us that things work out.