UPDATE: s/v OCEANS, Panama to French Polynesia, Part 1

Leaving  La Playita Marina in Panama City on 7.10, Tues at 1630hr (4:30pm) was just not going to happen!  Crew:  Rick & I &  our good friend Matthias from Germany.  After leaving the slip we  headed to the fuel dock, but, both of our props just would not work properly,  we were going sideways to the fuel dock.  Very tense!!! After Rick worked the props back & forth, they managed to start working.  Yippee, we are on our way to French Polynesia.  Heading out the narrow channel into the Pacific Ocean, both props again stopped working, now we were heading sideways onto the rocks with a very strong current.  Praying, praying & praying, LORD, WE NEED YOUR HELP, WE NEED YOUR HELP LORD!  Rick managed to maneuver us to the anchorage area.  We put the anchor down at 5:07pm.  Obviously, s/v Oceans and the crew were not leaving tonight.  GOD, says again, Not our time!!!  7.11, Weds, 0610hr, anchor up, everything was working again.  We are on our way.  We start our 3 hr watches, Rick, Myself & Matthias.   We start to see sperm whales, huge schools of dolphins; butterflies, frigate and albatross birds, sunrises, sunsets and flying fish, and all the wonders of the

Pacific.  The Southern Cross appears, Uranus, Pluto, Neptune, Jupiter, Saturn, Venus and Mars, so beautiful.

Day 3, was just not a good day!!!!  The ocean got rough, very choppy, quick waves, heavy rainstorm & wind, stuff inside the cabin started to fly around, we could not stand up without holding on to something.   We saw several areas that were delaminating in the main sail, then  rips showed up on the geneoa sail.  Now our 2 most often used sails can not be used to their full potential.   Our dinghy decides to try to commit suicide, a  stainless steel bolt holding it onto the davits, breaks in 1/2.  None of us got sleep, but, no one got hurt!!  Rick is concerned that we will run out of diesel.  We all need some serious sleep.  What to do???  Jump off in the Galapagos & get emergency repairs? French Polynesia is a very long way off, over 3,000 nautical miles away.  At this point, no research had been d

one for entrance into the Galapagos, which is highly restrictive for privately owned vessels.  We just weren’t going there; too expensive, been there done that and we wanted to get to Fiji to serve with Sea Mercy.

As we are making these decisions, days from the Galapagos, Al & Jill Wigginton, s/v Dragonfly, very experienced sailors, we had met in Fiji in 2015 sent us a text on our inreach asking how things were going.  After telling them our situation, they immediately went into high gear and offered options and information.  Not having the ability of doing any research since no internet out in the middle of the ocean, we were grateful to have their help and assistance.  Al & Jill got us in contact with an agent to prepare for emergency arrangement in the Galapagos.

Arrival Santa Cruz on 7.19- 8days from Panama with bad weather, broken sails and a tired determined crew.  Thank YOU, JESUS!

The repair facilities are basically non-existent.  A dinghy repair contractor and an upholstery repair contractor teamed up to assist us.  A referral that Al & Jill got by contacting the local hardware store.  Thank You, Al & Jill!!  Using pieces of old sails and glue to patch dinghies, our sails were put back together.  Our mainsail alone weights over 300lbs so it took 1/2 day to take down & 1 whole day to put back on.  The bay at Santa Cruz during our repairs was subject to heavy swells, this means on a calm day, we had 4-6ft seas right where we were anchored.  On rougher days, they were 8-10 ft.  The scenery was beautiful, the people were wonderful and the animals were crazy.  Galapagos wildlife is unlike any other place on this planet.  Animals have no fear of humans.  We were fortun

ate to see; blue footed boobies, giant tortoises, sharks of many kinds, seal lions, albatross & frigate birds.  Even a yellow warbler bird came inside the boat for a while & looked around & then flew out.  Before we departed, we took a vacation day and went to Isabella Island.  It was a rough ride over & back in a small ferry like boat, but is was beautiful and we got to get up close to sea lions, lava lizards and marine iguanas.

7.25 at 1900(7:00pm) Oceans anchor came up, conch horn was blown and we are off to Hiva Oa, Marquesas, French Polynesia.  Goodbye Galapagos Islands, hello 3,000 nautical miles……

The adventure continues………we the crew of s/v Oceans are excited, and thankful.  Thank YOU,JESUS!!

Our friend; Josh Johnson on board

We have had the good fortune to have Josh Johnson on board with us from Port Antonio, Jamaica to Colon, Panama.  We met Josh & his wife, Jenn at Port City Community Church, in Wilmington, NC.  He is a Really Good Man with amazing talents.  Check out his website:  www.covertconcepts.com .

He was a tremendous help, sharing some watches, building shelves for the galley, assisting with boat maintenance and lots of chores.  Thank You, Josh!!!!  We will miss you being around s/v Oceans.  Here are some pictures to share……….

Jamaica Mon

Josh Johnson is on board to help sail to Panama & through the Panama Canal.  We have met Josh & his wife, Jenn through Port City Community Church.  We are Happy to have his help & expertise on board s/v Oceans and to hopefully, meet up with Jenn in Panama City, the Pacific side of the canal.  The plan is to depart, Port Antonio, Jamaica later today, for approx. 4 day sail to Colon, Panama.  In Colon we will check in with government officials & make our appointment to go through the Panama Canal.  While waiting for our appointment date, we hope to sail to the San Blas Island to check them out.  Only GOD knows if that will happen.

Stay tune, as internet/wifi is sporatic.  I will update when able.

In the Bahamas

Hello Everyone,

We the crew of s/v Oceans are out of the country!!

Rick & I did 3 hour watches, which means one of us is up for 3hours & the other sleeps for 3 hours, or at least try’s to rest  & then we switch.

Saw several cruise ships, during passage;  Carnival Conquest headed to St. Maarten, Celebrity Equinox to San Juan, Carnival Glory enroute to Half Moon Bay, Disney Magic back to Miami, Celebrity Summit enroute to Nassau, MSC Seaside to Antiqua.  With our AIS equipment we can id. ships & see some pretty cool stuff, how fast they are going, tonnage, etc.

The night sky was simply beautiful, the Moon & Uranus  were visible with lots of stars on my 1st watch, 1800-2100 hours. , (6-9pm).  The sky is  pretty amazing once you get out of sight of land & all the lights.  On another watch, I got to see Carnival Sensation heading to Grand Turk, with Jupiter & Mars in the night sky.

We arrived into a small anchorage off Rose Island, anchor down at 5:08pm, Sunday Night. Beautiful, Safe Trip.   Time to catch up on some sleep.  Nice to be back in the Bahamas.  Watercolors are spectacular.

We have checked in with Customs & Immigrations, now we are legal.  Working on improving our communication equipment, as we wait for weather window to sail to Haiti.

Hope to update again, soon.

 

 

Fort Pierce, Florida