Friday, November 13, 2015

Boisterous romp down to Espiritu Santo

We just rolled in (pun intended) from a very lively sail from Isla San Francisco 23 miles south to Isla Espiritu Santo.  We had a quite a group that moved south today as everyone has been holed up waiting out this last norther.  Today it was supposed to ease up quite a bit and then tomorrow settle.  After being out there we realized that the norther was not quite done yet. We had 6 or 7 boats all out there together.  You know what they say when there is more than one sailboat on the same part of the sea?  It's a race!  Luckily it was a fairly short sail because it was ROUGH!  18-30 knots of wind and confused seas with the big ones running in the 7-9' range.  Hang on the to the handrails Harold!  The wind was dead behind us which makes for difficult steerage and is definitely our slowest point of sail.  

So we elected to not run wing on wing and instead long jibed downwind on a deep broad reach.  We had to cover more distance than the other boats which were traveling on a rhumb line direct to the anchorage but we travel faster a little off the wind.  So out we went in what appeared the wrong direction sailing a few miles out of the way and away from the pack.  At about half way we jibed and then headed to our destination.  With the wind gusting in the high 20s we reefed both the jib and the mainsail but were sailing at a good clip, averaging about 7.5 knots.  On several occasions we saw over 8 knots and a few times 8.5 surfing down the faces of the waves.  

As we got closer to the entrance to the anchorage we were clearly ahead of all but one boat, Serena.  She was a fast one and pulled in a good distance ahead of us then the Liahona followed by the others a fair amount behind us.  It was a super fun sail, although a little stressful for me as it was a bit wild.  Marne had a smile from ear to ear and loved every second of it!

For now we are anchored in Caleta Cardonal in a beautiful inlet with shallow, white sand waters to our east at the head of the bay.  Cardonal is about 26 miles north of La Paz and we plan to head that direction in the next day or two.  All is well on board and we miss you all!  Until next time.

SV Liahona
Bret and Marne

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