Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Pacific Passage in Pictures

Here are some pictures of our Pacific crossing from Isabela, the Galapagos to the Gambier Islands in French Polynesia. The people who followed the blogs during the sailtrip might recognize some of the scenes... :-)

Leaving enjoyable Isabela in the Galapagos Islands

Bye bye Isabela and the Cerro Azul volcano

Becalmed at night, floating west at a little over 1 knot

One of the many sunrises, this one in flat seas

Some of our stocked-up vegetables; soon ready to be eaten

All bundled up after the night watch; the comfy chair was our saving grace!

Trophies after a night of sailing: flying fish and squid

Morning view of Irie's trampoline (after a rough night): a bunch of suicidal flying fish

Oh oh... The bananas all turning yellow already!

The only fish we caught: a small mahi mahi (dorado) - we did lose all our lures later

On one of the quieter and early days: Mark making spinach flat bread

Colorful sunset, behind a relatively flat horizon. We saw many sunsets on the trip, sometimes the same one multiple times, when rising and falling with the waves!

This acrobatic squid made it all the way onto the mainsail!

Rough seas, big swell - it is hard to do justice to the sea conditions in a picture

Rigged up cockpit cushions to keep the cockpit relatively dry from crashing waves

Our shower system: one sun shower filled with seawater, the other with fresh; both warmed by the sun

The best chocolate chip cookies in the world, with dark Belgian chocolate

One of the rainbows near a far away squall

On days with little wind, we fly our spinnaker - red, white and blue!

 One of the few beautiful days of sailing

Frontal system ahead; we're not sure what is to happen when we go through...

Surrounded by one of the squalls of the weather front - our sails are reefed and we fly

Arriving at the Gambier Islands, during the crappiest weather they have had in a while!

The perfect welcome by our friends Birgit and Christian from SV Pitufa: a basket with local goodies!


Anonymous said...

Have really enjoyed following your blog! I bought the very first Wirie- your own personal blue one that you took off Irie in St Martin. Jim , SV Salty Shores

Anonymous said...

Enjoy following your blog! I bought the first Wirie from you,one that you took off Wirie because I wanted a blue one. Still works perfectly! Jim SV Salty Shores

Liesbet said...

Hello Jim,

Thanks for following our adventures! And enjoying them. :-)

We do remember selling you our own Wirie and being without internet for a while ourselves until we ordered new parts and built our second set of ten! It seems such a long time ago. We hope you are still enjoying the sailing and the cruising (and The Wirie) as well!


Pieter said...

Hi Liesbet and Mark,
Pieter here (yes i am originaly from Holland, but have lived the last 15 years in Brazil, and currently since 4 years on my Fontaine Pajot Lavezzi). Since Dec 2012 i am in the Caribbean, liking it a lot. Just so i understand well, allthough they call it the milk run, sailing from the Galapagos to Gambier is not realy that sweet.. I mean there is no way of predicting the weather patterns and fronts? And what if you guys would have gone earlier or later? Anyway, today i arrived in lovely Bequia, on my way south again, in order to avoid the hurricanes.. Trust you guys will have a great time and congrats again with the crossing... All the best, Pieter, on board SV Onda Boa

ed said...

nice spinnaker!

Liesbet said...

Perfect spinnaker! Given to us in Panama by our German cruiser friend/photographer Axel of SV Gudrun - you met him at our wedding party, Ed... :-)

Liesbet said...

Hello Pieter,

The Caribbean are great and easy! Steady winds, comfortable anchorages, beautiful scenery, English language (mostly). Enjoy it. :-)

Yesterday, we were once again discussing the term "milk run" amongst other cruisers here in the Gambier and none of us actually understand why it is called that way... Friends of ours are on their second circumnavigation and they said that the trip to the Marquesas (on their first run) might have been a bit easier, but because of the many squalls not really a milk run either. Maybe the term was invented by people who did never cross the Pacific or by the tourist bureau of French Polynesia... :-)

The "trustworthy" weather predictions are only going out a few days and the weather changes constantly as well, which means that once you are a few days out, it is what it is. We do get the weather through email, and can therefore plan a little bit around the systems, but most of the time, you can't avoid what is to happen, unfortunately, and over three to four weeks, a lot of different weather will come your way.

Based on the pilot charts, May and June are the best months for a Pacific passage, which is why we planned for that. If you go during other times, the conditions might even be worse! Also, being here now for a week, there seems to be a bad weather system over or near the Gambier islands often! :-(

Enjoy lovely Bequia and your trip sailing south! Are you spending hurricane season in Grenada? That island is probably our most over all favorite one in the Eastern Caribbean! Lots of sailing and anchoring options. Have fun!