Below is a copy of the daily log Johnny has been keeping onboard. I have also included our daily runs or miles and some photos from the passage.
June 29th Departure
2048 UTC lat 00'53 S 090'34 W 7.1kts in the right direction
Thank Christ we finally left Puerto Ayora on Santa Cruz such a crappy anchorage. After being quoted $200 for "agents fees" they turned up with a bill for $657! After much discussion and negotiation and being assessed as a 17 ton vessel instead of a 7 Ton (even that's a few ton over) we finished up paying just over $300. There is a bit of trying it on to put it mildly. Food, taxis are cheap. The autopilot Ramases (the mighty Ram) went on the blink again we had to hand steer the last night and day coming in here to the Galapagos but thought it was fixed. Took about one and a half hours to sort it out. Dodgy connection enough current to work when not under load but under load beep beep beep. Thank you Hughey and Ramese's and Jase who tracked it down. It would have been a disaster to loose it two up.
June 30th first day out
Leaving the Galapagos sure beats getting there. Favorable wind and sea state and off Spirit canters along smoothly. We passed Kevin Butcher just before dark (Racket Roller) doing 13kts and drinking rum and cokes. He was suitably impressed. He's on his own hope he will be ok we will probably meet up on the Marquesas. We met up with Butch and Susan for drinks and meals and enjoyed each others company while in Santa Cruz. He had a few nights with Don, Dick and Sally, who are somewhere ahead of us. The last part of the Galapagos to get around is an old volcano crater of an island shaped like a horse shoe or boomerang. It's a seriously bleak desolate and forbidding site. Almost caught a fish! But it got off leaving one gill on the hook, poor bugger. We have hardly been under 10kts and sometimes over 15it's when we run off a bit north of west to slow things down a bit. She sure jumps to 17-18kts very easily.
Position UTC 2055 lat 01'20 S long 094'43 W 2690nm to Hiva Oa, we are knocking the miles off. Daggerboard foot block leaking major effort to stop and fix for the time being.
Finished reading "my old man and the sea" interesting story of a father and son trip around cape horn in a virtue class yacht that was under 30ft.
Position at UTC 2105 lat 01'56 S long 098'36 W
Quite a day so far. We can not slow the bitch down. Two reefs in the main and she is still bolting a 15kts plus. Jase went up the mast during a running off period to fix the lazy jacks that had the STB lines hooked up. So we were lucky we didn't need to reef last night. Replaced both lazy jacks with the new ones from Merelita. Much better we can now roll then up lace them and avoid chafe on the sail. Also the headsail furler foils were coming loose and chafing the working jib along the bolt rope so we tapped over sized bolts in and used epoxy putty to cover the sharp edges. Should work ok. Omelet for lunch. Hit 19.2kts before reducing sail to a rolled up half jib and three reefs in the main and are still doing 11-12kts with occasional burst to 15-16kts but much easier on everything and everyone. Saw a school of dolphins and tuna jumping super high and a marlin chasing something.
Oh boy what a new day. Water is warmer and fish on the line. Caught a dolphin fish (mahi mahi) perfect size. Weather improving and wind direction ESE. I guess its the trade winds further north and stronger than usual. Just checked the iPad and it says we are halfway to halfway, 2270nm to go we will knock that off tomorrow. Dealt with a few issues of chafing and leaking. The one solar panel remaining stopped putting in amps. Water had got into a chafed electrical cable so we rerouted the wire, drilled holes through the alloy frame and used rubber grommets from the B&G box to protect the cable where it now exits through the side of the frame. Shit design. Not meant for a boat. Anyway more underwater epoxy and self amalgamating tape has it putting in 8amps when the sunshines. May not have to run the engine for a few hours at night to top up power.
Mixed bag today sunny early morning then clouded over and piped up a bit. Jase hit 21. something kts on a long surf under control and smooth. We had shaken out all but the last reef so for a few hours we were smoking along, then copped a beauty over the float that knocked the Spirit out of her and prompted tucking the reefs in again. Set up for the night a little early but we won't have to do it in the dark. We knocked the 1000nm off today so we are a third of the way after 4 days. Going good but wet and salty. A flying fish flew in a smacked Jason on the side of the head and ricochet into my back so both of us got hit quite hard by the one fish, what are the odds? This morning 7 squid and 6 flying fish had landed onboard.
Position at 2330 UTC lat 04'14 S long 106'35W 1928nm to go! Doing 12.6 in 20kts true breeze just aft of the bream. Near enough to the rhumb line and steering 235 degrees. We've been reading up on the Marquases and we both like the "Bay of Virgins" as our first stop metaphorically speaking. Finally got a sat call through to Butch on "Racket Roller" and he's ok about 300nm astern and closer to the equator. Rang Jim with a position report and he's crook as a chook with a staf infection. No engine needed tonight.
Tried to bend bow rail away from forestay but not really good. Jason whipped up the rail where it's wearing the furler tube should help. just missed a big turtle while doing so, it was a bloody long way from anywhere.
Saw a big two hundred ft tuna boat just before sunset we passed half a mile apart. Our only company since the first night. We wondered what the yanks have to celebrate today! being broke! I'm catching up on the log so no position report. Not very impressed with the weather grib files and they have been renamed the grub files. They sort of get the wind direct right but under estimate the wind pressure constantly. Forecasting 10-15kts and it's mainly been 15-30kts more like the trade wind at Portland roads back home although that constantly gets up to 40kts, touch wood! We are still averaging over 10kts with three reefs in the main and jib only. At times we have both had burst of 17-20kts she sure is a flighty girl our Spirit.
Halfway 2300 UTC position 05'52 S long 114'03 W
Jase put sticky back on the jib to help the chafe from the bow rail and rigged the lazy runner lines so they can't chafe on the jammers on the mainsail traveller car. I had a big sleep from 0930 to 1500 and emerged hot sweaty and full of weird dreams cold shower on deck soon smartened me up. Late lunch, hash browns (one egg no flour better) bacon, eggs and tomato. Have avocado, crackers and rum and coke ready for sundowners and halfway celebration. One coke left for arrival. Only a few flying fish but one tiny little one centimeter embryo was stuck in the jammers. Jase had a hair cut and shave, me tomorrow.
Can hardly believe we are over halfway and will be under 1000nm by tomorrow. I came on deck to a whole change of seen. Blue skies, sunshine 20-25kts of wind and our Spirit is bolting along wing and wing. Seems to be handling it really well. Still three reefs in the main but the working jib is barber hauled out to the port crossarm on a strop. 10-15kts boat speed and sunshine. Mainsheet is way out and prevented and traveller cars have their cam cleat jammers at each end of the track swapped over so now we can't get the mainsheet under them which was bending their mounting plates. Ham cheese omelet scramble for lunch then the "eating machine" polished off the remains of last night as well!
Position at 2043 UTC lat 06'37 S long 117'13 W going good first stop a special tribute to Ramases (the mighty ram) worth two crew at least. From sunset to after midnight we were sailing down a moon path. Beautiful. Almost half full. Jase put the Mr Asia story on my iPhone so made a start to it last night. My hair cut!! Mohawk!! No a number 1 all I need is a prisoner number.
Ran all last night wing and wing and this morning as the breeze dropped off to 10-12kts we put up the medium furling reacher and stayed around 10kts SOG. Another fishing line gone! No fish, 2 lures out now fingers x. Ham, cheese, tomato and basil omelet for lunch but I burnt the bottom a bit. Tasty though. Slowed again so put up the medium chute and voila (French territory is getting closer) back around 10kts again. Raised a bit more dagger board and "Ramases" seems to be doing it a little easier. 1075nm to go!! Tomorrow am should be inside that. Put our local time back again as Galapagos time was getting a sunrise at 0730 last couple of days have been the smoothest sailing so far this leg.
Position @ 2115 UTC lat 07'94 S long 120'56 W 1071nm to go.
Put the chute away just before dark and back to full job and three reefs in the main and still doing 10-15kts. Wind speed in the low 20's off the port quarter 1/2 moon tied to the mast head, then sailing down the moon path.
Position @ 2146 UTC lat 07'44 S long 124'34 W 851nm to go.
Today's 24hr run should be a goody and turned out to be 262nm. Early morning wind up to 28kts ran off 10 degrees then another 10 degrees. Later on wind dropped and we put up the kite, that sped things up a bit. Seems to freshen up and dawn and dusk. Jase hand steering, saw 21.5kts bit excessive but when I came up on the afternoon he'd dropped it on his own (practicing for RTW fame?) we were still doing 10-15 it's with then jib and three reefs. Moon is over half full now and giving us a moon path each night, very picturesque. Finish reading Last Man Standing an account of the Mr Asia syndicate. Heaps of bullshit in it. I could hardly believe the author was crook on getting 25 years of which he only did 14! but kept harping on the 25 as though he did 25. Jase is struggling though Shantaram which I read on the Atlantic crossing onboard Zanabe and it's definitely not a literary master piece for mine, but and interesting yarn.
Position @ 2308 UTC lat 08'37 S long 128'33 W, 610 nm to go! 2-3 days maximum. No fish and no lures. Down to our last two spoons fingers crossed as our fresh food is getting low. Fridge needs coke, washed two pairs of salty shorts and myself all much improved. Only two flying fish this morning and no squid for the last few days. No dolphins, tuna or whales. Only flying fish and birds and a he'll of a lot of water. Still going through a lumpy sea state.
Position @ 2143 UTC lat 09'23 S long 131'37 W. Almost under 400nm TP go should be under 300nm by 2345 UTC wow! Looking for mountain tops already. Wind dropped off a bit today and seas smoothed out quite a bit so up with the kite and we're back on 10kts. Still no fish. Perhaps we should be playing the silver spoons instead of using them as lures. Two and half days now and no bites seems like the squid like ones are the go. Sunny all day hatch open hatch open washing on the line. Sat phone call to butch he's 750nm behind and heading direct to Nuka Hiva. W are going to Fatu Hiva then Hiva Oa and up to Nuka Hiva so well probably catch up with him there. Oh boy at 2120 UTC 399nm to go!! Kept the kite up last night but Jase couldn't sleep so down it came back to working jibe and three reefs for security. Slowed us down a bit but tomorrow is another day.
Position & 2154 UTC lat 09'55 S long 135'00 W. 220nm to go. Kite and full main up this morning and surprisingly there isn't much difference in speed. With the fill main off the wind and errrrr running deep 10-15kts boat speed for most of the day. Fishing disaster STB side line turned into a twisted tangle and port one had lost the lure and steel wore trace had snapped! Probably lucky not to land that one. Must be getting somewhere, Jase saw a solitary Frigate bird and some rubbish. Reread Tom Sawyer and remembered it instantly from 21+ years ago. I laughed out load often. Jase saw a couple of shooting stars and the moon is up all night now and it sure is lovely sailing down a moon path.
Arrived 13 days Marquases. We see the land and it bloody high and where its supposed to be! iPad therefor I,am. $1,000,000.00 thanks Jobsy. Position @ 2043 UTC lat 10'25 S long 138'04 W about 34 nm to go. Yeah fucking ha Fatu Hiva and an uninterrupted nights sleep coming up. On the approach a very large octopus floated past the boat, dead I presume but it was quite a whopper. Body as big as me plus tentacles just floating on the surface and no sign of life. Very misty and hazy coming up the south west coast. Wind dropping off cleaning frenzy onboard boat then us feels good. Hope we can see the sunset from the anchorage. Motoring making water and amps as we close the shore the sun begins to reveal the details that were hidden in the mist and shadow. It's awesome, prime evil, spectacular! Words just don't do it. Anchored up in heaven sounds of drumming and singing ashore. Got out the binoculars and there where a large group of dancers on a Tuesday night maybe practicing for a cruise ship visit. After dinner we checked the phone connections and low and behold we had roaming coverage.