Saturday 26 January 2019

Stage 2 - Santa Marta to San Blas Islands

We departed Santa Marta yesterday morning - 2 days behind the
schedule. The start had been postponed by high winds and high seas,
but all the crews were itching to be off.

The wind was very gentle in the marina, but there was enough for a
decent start under full sail. we headed west for 40miles to give the
Magdalena river a wide berth. Reports of overfalls, sandbanks and
large debris meant almost the whole fleet kept at least 10miles off.

Heading SW down the coast, the winds and seas started to build. Our
friends Ed, Gemma & family onboard Aurora B reported steering problems
- the wheel had come disconnected from the quadrant and was therefore
useless. We slowed down to be close to them whilst they gathered
their thoughts. Their autohelm worked and they also have hydrovane
wind-steering, so there was no immediate danger, so they decided to
head towards Puerto Velero, 20miles south. They were last seen
heading south and we all hope they'll catch us up soon.

Overnight, the winds and seas continued to build as forecast. For much
of the nght, winds were about 30knots with 3 to 4 m seas. 3
reefs in main and genoa. However, heading downwind as we are means
there is no problem with these conditions and Wendy has been on the
helm for over 12 hours straight now.

Today, conditions are gradually calming down and there are about
100miles to the San Blas so we hope to arrive about daybreak!

Jo's making a chocolate cake and all good!

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