And the next leg!

Norman Carter
Sun 28 Mar 2010 20:54
Galapagos to the Marquesas
We left Santa Cruz at 11-30 local time on the 23rd March and our now begging our 6th day at sea. 15 - 20 days to go!!
The besty way to update this blog will be to write a precise of my diary, so here it comes --------
Been at sea for nearly 3 days, heading south to try to catch good wind and caught it about 10 hours ago, doing about 61/2- 7kn and nearly in the right direction.
On the first day the fishing line screamed and I spent ages fighting something big, which was jumping on the surface. it seemed to be followed by something bigger and when I got it near the boat a shark pinched it!
Not to be outdone another bite and another long battle but this time we won with a Wahoo weighing at least 35lb ( and I've got the photos to prove it ---to follow when we've learnt how), and nearly as long as me - I know, that's not difficult!
Sadly it was so big that we could only store the best pieces and the rest had to go back,but enough for at least 3 days.
The first meal of fried Wahoo in breadcrumbs with roast squash,sweet potato and potato was spoilt by the onset an horrendous squall which was the beginning of a black hole of rain squalls for the next 24hrs rain like we've never experienced.
The next day fish cakes made with, onion, garlic, ginger and desicated coconut --------very nice.
The approach to the Marquesas is said to be stunningly dramatic and we have elected to go via Fatu Hiva which is said to be the most special of all.
We have been warned not to swim because of tiger sharks and take plenty of deet (no good for sharks) ashore because of the noseeums --- nothing for free eh?
We are steadily getting into a routine and night watch is 7-11, 11-3, 3-7, alternating each day.
I stupidly left the forward hatch open and have spent the last 2 days drying the forward cabin.
A weird experience this afternoon, - we were followed by a school of dolphins or so we initially thought until we saw that they were much bigger with rounded heads - I think a pod of minky whales, but are they found in these waters? If so there must have been 20++
Now when one is followed by a school of dolphins they frolic and prance around he boat seemingly in joy and fun - but these guys seemed to be on patrol; maybe 41/2 -6 mts long and heavy with large round heads and sinister faces- they were that close. They seemed not to be frolicking but inspecting and although it was an awesome sight we both felt relief when they left.
My mind was in overdrive and despite all the forward planning and preparation I realized that we were still not effectively prepared to launch the life raft and grab all the grab bags necessary - for instance the iridium phone and handheld VHF are never in the "bags" because they are in daily use.
The other disadvantage is that our new life raft, too heavy to be stern mounted is strapped to the foredeck, under the dinghy - various corrections have been made.
But back to our whales, for they were just that but not minkys but Pilot whales with an attitude and a reputation - general advice is to keep well away from them -- yea at 6 knots?
respect man!
Take care