The impromptu bank holiday

Getting out on the water and sailing is a pursuit that most people have to save for their time off. It represents a respite from their other life of being defined by their weekday job and makes every weekend, every summer break and each public...

Smoothly does it

So, in typical sailor fashion, after meticulous planning of our Fiji to New Zealand passage, making sure we had extra crew on board and timing our departure just right in terms of weather, it ended up being really very straightforward and simply...

When no news is good news…

I planned for this to publish while we were most likely out of all contact. Why? Because we are off exploring the Tuamotu Archipelago. This is the largest chain of atolls in the world and one of the most extreme places we've gone to with the boat....

A hop, a skipper and a jump

A while back a friend of mine wrote a post on her blog that was called “Love letter to my captain”. It was an acknowledgement of her appreciation of just how much work she realised her husband did on board when he needed to fly home to the States...

Safe and sound

Yes, we made it! We are safely at anchor in Baie Tahauku, Atuona, Hiva Oa. Our passage across from Punta de Mita, at the northern tip of Banderas Bay in Mexico, took 26 days in total, covering a distance of 2,850 nautical miles. It wasn’t quite the...

Where, Pacifically, are you going?

As you may be aware we're hoping to head across the Pacific starting this March. But, one thing that we've been asked on a number of occasions is how these exotic places all relate to one another and when we'll get to each one. A sailor's plans are...

Method in the madness

So what vital bit of the story has been missing here? Were any of you questioning our decision to head north for 2,250 miles for over three and a half months in order to get to Banderas Bay in Mexico for hurricane season? Well, if not, then maybe you...

To Motor or not to Motor, that is the question

You are off the Pacific coast of Nicaragua. The moon is setting. It’s five in the morning the wind is 9 knots from the North West and you have plotted your latest position on the paper chart on the nav-table. You have travelled only seven miles...

Time to turn

Long before we had reached the Pacific coast of Central America we knew that we would need to watch the weather for Papagayos. From December to March, high pressure systems move into the Caribbean, reinforcing the trade winds which then pour over...

The Pleasures of Passage Making

A frigate bird wheels overhead as the hazy dawn light is mirrored back by the water. The sea is absolutely still, more like a lake than an ocean, blurring the horizon so that the sky bleeds into the water. Slowly, gently, a large, old leatherback...

Bye bye Bocas

The time has come. We have been in Bocas for 5 months now, had 4 sets of family and friends to visit, trashed and subsequently replaced our mainsail, done a full engine service, cleaned our keel and prop and even hosted a toddler. We've made amazing...

The Mouths of the Bull

Sod’s law that after covering nearly 8,000 miles in the last 8 months we would have our worst ever weather just 5 miles from our last major Caribbean destination: Bocas del Toro, Panama. I don’t think our families were particularly concerned...

‘Tis the season to get moving

It’s May 27th and we’re still in Isla Mujeres, Mexico (see, when I said a few posts back that we needed a break I really meant it!). Trouble is, the earliest that hurricane season has been known to start is May 29th. What with the dragging...

A hop, skip and a jump

I thought that it was important to write something about our passage-making these days. Moving up the islands in the East Caribbean has been quite a varied experience. First of all because each island itself is a distinct, individual country of...

Not your average milk run

The crossing of the Atlantic ocean from East to West is known among sailors everywhere as the ‘milk run’ primarily because it is supposedly straightforward and simple if approached at the right time of year. The instructions for sailing from the...

Gibraltar, Smir, Ceuta and Las Palmas, Gran Canaria.

So we left Queensway Quay Gibraltar and Lis and Paul, our friends who joined us there, waved goodbye to what used to be their home. Next stop, Smir in Morocco to do a quick lesson in power handling, courtesy of Paul. We wanted to make sure that...

Strait to the point (sorry!)

The strait of Gibraltar separates mainland Spain from Morocco and mainland Africa. At its narrowest point it is only 7.7 nautical miles. Crossing the strait or going through the strait requires an understanding of how that narrow stretch of ocean is...