Sailing with YELO

09 June 2018 | Lake Gatun Panama
09 June 2018 | the Flats anchorage Colon Panama
05 June 2018 | Colon Panama
02 June 2018 | Cholon , Colombia
01 June 2018 | Cholon , Colombia
29 May 2018 | Cholon , Colombia
27 May 2018 | Cholon , Colombia
26 May 2018 | Cholon , Colombia
26 May 2018 | Cholon , Colombia
22 May 2018 | Cartagena , Colombia
16 May 2018 | Cartagena , Colombia
15 May 2018 | Puerto Velero, Colombia
12 May 2018 | Puerto Velero , Colombia
11 May 2018 | Cabo de la Vela , Colombia
10 May 2018 | Cabo de la Vela , Colombia
09 May 2018 | Cabo de la Vela , Colombia
08 May 2018 | Between Venezuela and Colombia

dragging boats in Rikitea

19 June 2020 | Gambier
Rolf Fischer | now 24 C
an eventful afternoon with Daniela running out in my underwear to safe a French boat that was going onto the rocks. The captain came back soon and thanked us for saving his bucket. I couldn't help telling him how I , moi would have done it and me this and me that.
It seems i jump on every occasion to tell other people what to do. So i did and he politely listened . Daniela kept on telling me in Swiss to stop it .Ok i shut the fff up.
Soon a gust grabbed Yelo and ripped out her anchor .So off we went with a feverish smile and fired up the engines to save my bucket. Rather adventurous with 35 knots of wind, but we made it . This is what you get for bragging...
Soon after wards it blew up to 40 and gusting 45knots. Quickly 3 yachts stated to pile up on top of each other. Unfortunately you cant do much with a small dinghy in that kind of wind. You could be lucky to make it back to your boat. Best to sit and fend off and other yacht dragging on top of you.
It was all a bid hectic and i just got over a nasty flue. I didn't publish me getting sick. You don't know if you have the wrong flu,unless you can test. No such thing here. So i just hoped that not a single strain of Corona made it to Gambier. We had a French war ship here for a few days, the young boys were busy improving the gene pool :-) of this rather inbred island. Their ship was ok but a French aircraft carrier was around 50% Corona positive.
Finally it calms down.Everybody re anchored and tomorrow a 5 day weather window opens up and a lot of boats will sail up North. Unfortunately with many we are happy that they leave. We met only a handful of sailors that were as nice as we are ....
Its scary to see when yachts get in trouble how little support there is from other sailors . Most sailors just sit and watch. Daniela is fast and often gets hurt during such heavy wind actions.
This time with a big feverish excuse , i couldn't go. I feel better now, didn't have the loss of taste in my mouth. So its just another man-flu.

Stormy Paradise

04 June 2020 | Mangareva, Gambier Islands
Rolfo
Its not all about pink sunsets with a pina calada our sailing life. Yesterday and nasty wind blew thru this anchorage toping 41 knots. That's a white out. If ever another yacht drifts into you, you couldn't see
much and couldn't do much either. You just hope all sailors are as careful as they can be and that there are not too many green horns around you. Our holding is excellent, but you never know, shit happens:
the shackle, holding the anchor to the chain can fail with these big loads or you just pull out your favorite anchor. If this would happen, we have 10 meters and we are on the rocks. At night...kaboom and our
rudders would touch first and it could be tricky to get away, because the propellers are also on the rocks or very close.
Good to know that this thick heavy mud that our anchor dug in, held ok thru 1 hour of 35 to 41 knots ....yuaack
2 other yachts were not so lucky in the Fakarava, Tuamotus. They went onto the rocks. I don't know if they are lost or hurt. They had a forecast of North West wind, so the boats motored up to the North end
of the atoll to be protected. But it came strong from the South West. Then you have 15 miles of peaceful lagoon water that turns into a heavy sea with 2 meter waves and the reef looking at you, just a few
meters behind your rudder!! Tuamotus are a pain for this. The are often very long and you can easily get a 40 mile fetch and the waves get bigger inside than outside the lagoon, like Hao.
Yesterday friends damaged their hull on a Catana 47 inside Hao harbor. The full moon and high tide filled up the harbor and they could not push down the fenders anymore. Hao can get 5 meters more water
inside the lagoon in a very short time. The harbor becomes a trap.
2 more days of around 20 to 25 knots in Gambier, then it should calm down.
Daniela was just lucky when she was alone in Hao last year. She had strong South East winds but the Oteba harbor did not fill up as much as Darse Sud.
Its not a place to leave your boat alone. Only in the boatyard its 99% safe.
I finally recovered from my fishing ordeal. I tried a few times to fish in Taravai, but didn't get a bite. But when I took the dinghy to get to Herves Sunday BBQ, I got a big Trevalley. I had to stop the dinghy and
this powerful fish pulled me around for a while until I could land him. I was so exited to show this 6 kg fish to everybody and Valerie and Herve where happy for me and said it was ok to eat. In the evening I
went back to Eduards dock and started to clean the fish. He looked at it quickly and said " Ah, its a blue one...forget it. Throw it away! " "Yes, but Herve said it was ok...." Eduard looked at me and grinned. "
You can eat it alright, but its big and i guess you have a 50/50 chance to get Ciguaterra."
I don't need that kind of risk and gave the dead Trevalley to the other small fish waiting to eat their old enemy. I kept a few pieces for bait and was frustrated. There are tons more in this lagoon, but its stupid
to kill a fish for nothing. Only the Yellow, Golden and White Trevalley are safe in Gambier and its better not to eat the big ones.
We peel pumpkin and eat like Kings and Queens. I had French Toast with " Zwaetschgge-Kompot (Compote de Quetsch or prune) .The last glass from Aruba. The goodies from Panama, Martinique and ABC
islands are slowly fading away. No fishing offshore when its stormy in Gambier. Its mostly veggies now...Tonight its Uru schnitzel (breadfruit) we love it.
All yachts stay put and wait for better weather and the 3 that left earlier this week for Hao got a bad beating on arrival. Glad nobody got hurt, but many friends had no sleep for two days and its not over yet. I
guess we are lucky to pick a safe spot. Or Daniela is lucky. For 3 years now, i let her alone decide when its time to sail. She does it way better than me.

Chez Eduard in the South of Taravai,

25 May 2020 | Mangareva, Gambier Islands
Rolfo
i haven't seen Eduard for a while. Time to catch up on virus and hopefully other, better news.
To much chop from the North and West, in Anganui after a quiet night. So it was time to leave . We got lucky in the morning, chopped down a small palm tree at the beach to get that delicious heart of palm. It
was a small one that decided to grow way to far out on the beach and it wouldn't have survived much longer. Much of his roots were washed out from the waves. So it was time it got into our salad bowl .
Pleasant ride along the shore, watching the goats run along with us on their daily trip around the island. Carefully avoiding the few houses with those nasty humans that all have bad intentions when it comes
to goats.
Its nice to be in front of Eduards place. Its often windy here and that's good, so we can charge the batteries and make lots of water. Our solar panels are 20 years old and don't give half as much as when they
were new. So we need the wind and our two KISS generators hum along nicely. We even have a little internet here. Life is good .This big motor yacht was leaving for Bora Bora...That's well apreciated, one
less at the crowded anchorage in Rikitea. It stank it up with his 24h air condition and generators running in Rikitea.

Baie Anganui ,Taravai, Gambier

24 May 2020 | Mangareva, Gambier Islands
Rolfo
East winds started to make our Mangareva anchorage uncomfortable. So we set sail and zoomed across to the Weast side of Taravai where the its flat For some strange reason the winds waltzes us around continuously, but its fine. A few goats make their trails and wait
for a nasty encounter with Herves dog. He chases the goats into the water and then they are easily caught by the horns and brought to Herves House as a temporary lawn mover. He tells the sensitive yachty girls that's what he needs them for. But the next BBQ or a pot
of goat curry is definitely their destiny. Before that, they had a good life,roaming thru this lovely island with their family until its curtains. I saw the Nuku Hau, a supply ship coming in thru the pass. 30 yachts are waiting to get carrots apples and Brie, a few high priced
tomatoes and half frozen potatoes and onions. I have seen most green stuff arriving in a sorrow state. Somehow they just throw all in the same container and cool it down way too much. The moment you buy any , you must cook it right away. It doesn't last more than a
week. Its amazing to see the yachties and locals buying grapes from Chile for 17$ / kilo. I sautéed a small pumpkin and had it with my spaghetti for lunch...it was excellent. I stay with the local produce. Tomorrow we go coconut hunting...hi hi hi we have way to many. But
we might get lucky and chop down a small palm tree and eat the palm heart...yummmee . No internet, no telephone, no radio or TV in this bay, its peaceful here

Hiding from the cold Maramu

21 May 2020 | Mangareva, Gambier Islands
Rolfo
10 am all boats left the anchorage in Taravai. The forecast has more South East wind coming and that means cold arctic air is filling in and you have to hide. Most of the time you waltz around Gambier as the wind often turns 360 in a few days. There is no all weather all
wind anchorage here. You can stay in Rikitea, its save but its a lee shore and you get soaking wet in the dinghy.
So we decided to try a new place for us on the South West corner of Mangreva. It seems ok , flat with bullet winds and big ground swell .Buts its manageable. Unfortunately if you go further along this protected coast its full of pearl farms and no way not to get tangled in
those lines..
Funny enough only one boat left Gambier with the confinement lifted completely. Nobody wants to ride a strong Maramu down to the Tuamotus and into the warmer weather. Its about 460 miles to Hao about 1000km. If you travel south that far in Europe you get warm fast.
We look forward to Hao, but rumor has it that they locked the yachties onto their boats during confinement. Food was delivered to them from the Police. If this is true , its another reason to stay away. I don't want to be in an island that treats us white people different than
the locals. They can do their own shopping, but we might be contagious and have to stay on board for 4 weeks . That's insane.
Gambier let us do our own shopping and we could sail around this big archipelago , where ever the wind directed us to. I hope this was not true for Hao, otherwise our next stop will be short. We have to treat every island as a possible place to get stuck again, if this
famous second wave comes. So it better be a place that is nice and where the people treat us like humans.

Unfortunately an Equadorian fishing trawler with 30 crew came to the Marquesas with one worker very sick from Corona. In Nuku Hiva he was air lifted out to Tahiti and then they were all tested . 29 crew members were positive, but not seriously ill. So they ordered them
to move near Tahiti and stay under quarantine some where way offshore.
This is bad news for us sailors. I am sure they throw us all in the same bucket. Hell knows how this captain was fishing offshore with all of his crew having symptoms. We have no info where he sailed from and how long he was offshore. But a big ship can keep this virus
going for long It jumps from one crew member to the next. Just read about both US and that French air craft carrier, were almost every body got sick. Funny how such a small enemy can cripple a war machine....
In Switzerland the politicians and the military were arguing about what new jet fighter they wanted to buy. And how to fight terrorists. The same bureaucrats were in charge of face masks and pandemic warfare in general....they all forgot about it and didn't order new gear
as they were told to do. Funny how all Swiss thought the government did a wonderful job.

This bay is peaceful and we don't fell much of the strong winds blowing over the mountains. Went ashore and found a few lime trees. Its just great how they smell fresh of the tree. You cant get this perfume of a fresh lime from any store. It only lasts a short time.

Our gecko is lively and jumping around every where. He just discovered an new bottle of rice wine Daniela made. A little wine is oozing out from the top and he likes to get loaded on it....temperature dropping down to 22C now...omg

Maramu

21 May 2020 | Taravai, Gambier Islands
Rolfo
The strong SOUTH EAST wind is coming , so we have to hide for a few days. We try a new anchorage on the SW corner of Mangareva , if this doesn't work we hide on the West side of Taravai.

Its time to do emails and more boat jobs. Nobody is leaving Gambier with this weather forecast. When this is over , there is no more wind. So the boats have to wait a few moore days until its nice sailing weather
Vessel Name: YELO
Vessel Make/Model: CATANA 431
Hailing Port: LANGKAWI
Crew: ROLF & DANIELA
YELO's Photos - Main
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Created 10 January 2019