10.35N 076.23W Multihulls Magazine 17th June 2011

Mojo 2
Andrew Partington
Fri 17 Jun 2011 15:11
The wind disappeared yesterday. It was around about Barranquilla on the Columbian coast that it dropped out to virtually nothing.
We passed within 10NM of Barranquilla and the skyline appeared to be that of a massive city. High rise buildings seemed to go on for miles and it looked like what I would imagine the skyline of New York to look like [I'll get there one day Gregor]. I'm not sure how many people live there but I plan to google it when we get to Panama.
Off the coast of the city we passed into to an area of very muddy water with loads of tree branches floating in it. At one point we cruised by what appeared to be about half a tree! There must have been a huge volume of water passing out of the river at Barranquilla to have pushed this material out to sea. Later we passed back into blue water at a distinct line littered with more foliage.
All afternoon we motored to try and keep some forward momentum. We tried without success to get sailing again but there was simply not enough wind.
At around 4PM we still had 4 knots from the north-west and were motor sailing when we observed a mass of dark cloud heading out from the Columbian coast. Given the thumping we received on the way into Aruba we dropped all sail to await the arrival of the front. Within a few minutes this fast moving front reached us, bringing with it a southerly change and winds which peaked at 24 knots. There was no rain in the system [where we were] but the line of the front dominated the whole skyline. The problem is that in its wake we had wind but it was bang on the nose.
We motored all through the night into a light 4 knots breeze. All around us were a series of electrical storms, both on the coastine and offshore. We came within 7NM of one but they were pretty easy to avoid given the lack of wind. The show was amazing again however with the fireworks arcing across the sky. It is as though the climate, being so hot and humid, must let off some steam every night. You can almost feel the pressure building through the day and know that by dark things are going to spark up. After sailing through two electrical storms now, none of us are keen to do it again.
This morning things are looking better for us. The wind is blowing from the south at 10-12 knots and this is giving us enough angle to once again be sailing.
Robert has proved to be adapting well after a baptism of fire off Aruba. He is picking up the workings of the boat well and undertaking his share of the nightime watch. We celebrated his first 2 days on the boat last night with a fine Antiguan rum. Now only 10 litres to go!! Might have to go back to get some more soon.
We have set a course now directly for the San Blas Islands, which means we are heading away from the coast of Columbia. We are 140NM from the Islands and are making a healthy 5-6 knots with full main and headsail.
Within the next few days our journey is to be published in the bible for all multihull sailers, MULTIHULLS Magazine. This is pretty cool given the number of articles I read from this fine magazine in preparation for this trip. Thanks to Eric Erwin for his interest and welcome aboard to all readers of the magazine.
Andrew Partington.