Las Perlas>Galapagos June 29th 2011: DTF 962nm (08:18.2N 78:54.1W)

Vries Peter Pons
Wed 29 Jun 2011 17:30
In half an hour or so (13.00h local time, 20.00h NL time) we leave for the
Galapagos. Starting point is Bahia San Telmo, Isla del Rey, Las Perlas,
Panama. The plan is to sail directly to Puerto Villamil, Isla Isabela, which
was recommended by our friends as the most interesting of the three areas
where we are allowed to anchor. Due to the delay in Panama we probably skip
San Cristobal and Santa Cruz, unless we have an issue with clearance, which
is formally not possible at Villamil. The Distance To Finish (DTF) is some
962nm, at an average speed over ground (SOG) of 6 knots we should be there
in 6 days. It all depends on the weather and if we are able to avoid the
Intertropical Convergence Zone (ITCZ), also known as the "Doldrums". This
area of light to no winds should normally be way north of Panama in this
season, but "normal" is for weather no sure thing at all. We've prepared the
boat for an ocean crossing, stowing everything, we prepared the grab bag for
emergencies, and we've rigged the gennaker for light weather. Haven't used
the thing since it was fixed in Antigua after it blew up during the Atlantic
crossing, which is now some 1 1/2 years ago, and with only the two of us
flying it will be exciting, and even more so getting it down in time, when
the winds pick up.

We'll send a daily update, systems permitting, on our whereabouts, and
Weynand Haitjema and Peter Houtzagers will support us with weather info by
text messages to our Iridium phone. We can receive text messages at no
charge, so please feel free to send us one now and then, either by phone or
by email (the latter is free for the sender as well, use
881631610468 {CHANGE TO AT} msg {DOT} iridium {DOT} com as the email address).
You can also send emails to aquamante {CHANGE TO AT} mailasail {DOT} com, but attachments are
automatically withheld, which we will only download when we have internet
access again.