ABC Islands to Panama

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April 22 - 25, 2014

    On our first day, we had rolly seas on our starboard beam/quarter with winds in the low 20s for about 4 hours.  The seas moved a bit further aft, and the motion was more comfortable.  Dolphins came to visit us in the early afternoon.  We poled out our jib and ran dead down with a fast current running with us.  The winds decreased during the night, and that caused us to roll a bit making sleep difficult.  Then our autopilot stopped working briefly.  So we did not get enough sleep our first night out, but the current helped us travel 163 miles in our first 24 hours.

    Our second day was again running dead down with winds mostly in the high teens and ok seas in the morning.  We still had lots of current with us.  The winds died down for a few hours in the afternoon, but we used the time to run the engine and charge batteries.  We had headed 60 miles offshore and in to very deep water to avoid the persistent low pressure events near Santa Marta, Colombia, and we passed that area during the night.  Winds increased to the high 20s and low 30s with 8 - 10 foot seas, and we remained dead down for comfort.  We traveled 160 miles.

    Our third day started with decreased winds and sloppy seas.  As the day went on, the boat motion improved considerably.  We were still running dead down, and we were trying to slow down to plan a daylight arrival in the San Blas Islands of Panama.  We traveled 153 miles.  We needed to go slower.

    On our fourth day, we continued to follow the wind dead down until we were a bit west of our course.  The wind decreased in the afternoon, and we jibed the main briefly, but we ended running dead down again.  We were trying to go slow without stopping.  We had a few squalls around us, but none hit us.  We traveled 129 miles.

    On Saturday morning, we eyeballed our way in to the Coco Banderas Cays in the San Blas Islands of Panama.  It was stunningly beautiful, and we were the only boat there.  We dropped the hook at 11:00 AM local time - 1600 GST.

    We sailed 605 miles in 99 hours for an average speed of 6.11 knots.  This speed is increased by the considerable current that was running with us for the first two days, but it is decreased by our efforts to go slow for more than 24 hours.  We were pleased to make this passage in four days.

    We did not take a single picture on this passage.

 

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