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Sunday, May 17, 2009

Day 1, Galapagos Passage

0800 Sunday, May 17

First John:

Friday night after a delicious Bon Voyage dinner on M/V Mystic Moon with new friends, John and Kathy, Linda noted that the holding tank was draining slowly (we have a system where the tank drains under gravity, we hold waste during the day and then dump it at night when it will have a chance to depart before anyone sees it). It has completely clogged in the past, requiring major haz-mat conditions to clean up. There's no way we were going to take off on a 900 mile ocean voyage without making sure the head was usable. So the morning of our departure started at 0415 for me (John). I dismantled the hoses and cleared the clog in a little under an hour. Not bad for an old guy. I thanked Linda over and over for telling me about it the night before. Doing that job is much less trouble when the holding tank is empty!

Now Linda:

We departed the Punta Cocos anchorage at the southern tip of Isla del Rey in Panama's Perlas islands at 0830 Saturday morning. After clearing the point and checking into the Panama Pacific net we managed to sail a whopping 35 minutes before our speed dropped below 2 knots and we turned on the motor. We didn't get to sail again until mid-afternoon and had a nice slow ride until after dinner. We were actually making good speed through the water but with the counter-current we weren't making much headway over the ground. Tao 8, a Canadian boat, also departed on Saturday for Ecuador and are likely behind us as they will try to sail as much as possible.

This morning the water is glassy with a low swell coming from two directions making it a bit of a bouncy ride but not bad. I took 18 mg of Stugeron (cinnarazine) yesterday morning, but it's been so calm that I don't think I really needed it. Also, we've let Ziggy stay off harness and leash, this in spite of the sad news that Gary and Lois of Hurrah! lost their 11 year old Mommy kitty in a flat calm anchorage recently. It was only 45 minutes between when Lois last saw her and when they realized she was gone, and even after searching they couldn't find her. No doubt we'll put Ziggy in his harness when conditions warrant it, but for now he's happier (as happy as he can be with the engine making everyone on board deaf) without it, and we keep a close eye on him.

24 hour stats for Day 1:

Nautical miles traveled: 94
Water Temp: 82.2 to 84.6 degrees F
20 hours motoring, 4 hours sailing
Saw two turtles, dolphins, a sport fishing boat, a few ships (including the Crown Opal - AIS is great!), fishing boats (which John had to dodge on his watch), lots of logs and debris Saturday morning, rays jumping, and a tuna boat helicopter. Had a few rain showers but nothing heavy; saw lightning in the distance.
Managed to put a small tear in the main sail within the first 15 miles, but John patched it with sticky sail tape. And lost the plastic juicer overboard but turned around and picked it up.

Linda and John