The Different Moods of the Pacific, 26.4.2012 16:10

Fri 27 Apr 2012 05:46
7:16.381N 80:55.638W
The Different Moods of the Pacific
Ensenada Naranjo, Panama
26. April 2012

The wind slowly died this morning around 9:00 and went from 10 knots for a few hours to finally only 2-3 knots in the afternoon.
Just around the corner of the SW tip of the peninsula we found a nicely sheltered beautiful anchorage.

On our first real trip in the Pacific Ocean, we made 160nm in 27 hours. When we left Panama City, the wind was blowing strong with up to 28-30 knots and white capped choppy waves (fortunately coming from side behind, pushing us). The night sail was a bit more relaxed and pretty smooth. After a bit changing winds and confused seas at Punta Mala, the wind started dropping more and more, until we drifted with maximum 4 knots through flat waters. I had only the Genoa after the rough ride and breaking reefing lines and that just wasn't much for 10 knots wind. And I couldn't set the main sail on my own and didn't want to get Michael out of his peaceful sleep. So I enjoyed the mellow mood at dawn and sunrise and even spotted some whales in the distance - first time ever for me!

When the captain got up we set the main and Michael cruised happily along the Southern coast with 6-7 knots while I retrieved to my cabin and caught up with some sleep.
Unfortunately, the wind really started dropping around 9:00. And even though we exchanged the Genoa for the Screacher when I got up, we had to continue with some help of the engine.
Michael had caught a Tuna during my nap, but since I wasn't up for Sashimi for breakfast, we enjoyed it later at a lovely dinner in our solitary anchorage.

Without the wind, it had gotten hotter and hotter, and since Michael wanted to check the feathering of the propellers, we took in all sails, stopped the engines and went for a little swim.
With the solitary mountainous lush jungle scenery in the background it was quite magical to swim in the deep dark green-blue pacific.
A school of dolphins came to play along the bow but got bored quickly with our slow speed. So delightful to watch them. Unfortunately, we don't have internet to upload some pics.

We got tired of motoring and since the weather forecast didn't show any good wind for the next days, we headed for the closest sheltered anchorage. The Pacific appears very different to the Caribbean.
Most of this South Western coast is completely deserted. The beach is black from the vulcanic origin, but fortunately, we didn't get any bugs yet, neither ashore nor on the boat.
The water is very clean, but visibility practically nil, due to the plankton. No coral reefs or pretty fish seen, yet. It's a bit like swimming in a lake in Germany, just a bit warmer.

Tomorrow, we want to explore the shore, apparently, there are some hiking trails. Maybe we'll see some more sloths?
But first, we'll have to catch up with some sleep.
Buenas noches!

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