Sailing to French Polynesia

We have 350 Nautical Miles to go as I begin to write this latest blog post on day 15 of our longest non stop crossing to date - 3000 Nautical miles (5,400 kms) of open ocean.¬† By the time I finish writing and editing it, we are likely to have covered another 500 miles on what has become our trip home... back to Australia. It will also mean that we are more then half way across the Pacific. heading into town for last minute provisioning in the…

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First steps in the Pacific & exploring the Galapagos islands.

After the excitement, the preparation, the antifouling, replacing spreaders, provisioning, buying the last minute essential spear gun, extra lures, surfboard wax, sunscreen and whatever else we could think of, we crossed the Panama Canal and.... relaxed... we were in the PA-CI-FIC - it wasn't so much that the Pacific is a more relaxing ocean, but we were past the point of no return, we had all put in big efforts to get Squander as ready as she could be and the Pacific adventure was underway... what will…

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Crossing the Panama Canal

There's a really curious side of sailing that may not be immediately obvious to people outside the cruising community. In our little sailing world, word of mouth is everything - where to anchor, where to eat, which marina is good, how much is diesel in the next port, did you hear about that Japanese boat that exited the Panama canal backwards, don't miss the so and so - the list goes on. The interesting thing that I have noticed is that in face to face conversations the…

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Discovering the San Blas islands in the Kuna Yala – Panama

We were meant to be across the Panama Canal by now and on our way to the Galapagos islands, but I couldn't be happier with our decision to extend our stay in the corner where Central America meets South America. We left Colombia with big smiles on our faces after a whirlwind 10 or so days there and were planning on stopping in the San Blas islands for a few days.... we ended up spending almost another 10 days in the San Blas and could easily have…

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Colombia – we love you!

I initially considered a stop in Colombia a long time ago when planning the overall trip from Italy to Australia. I hadn't given it much more thought until¬† some months later, when Andy came onboard and mentioned that he had heard the Carnaval in Barranquilla is meant to be one of the best in South America, second to Rio de Janeiro... That sounded like a good reason to go, and the more we researched it and the more we spoke to people along the way, the more…

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Pirates of the Caribbean & other adventures!

Fifth of January 2011, Squander seemed eerily quiet, like the morning after a big party, when all the guests have left and only the residents remain - it's both sad and enjoyable. Sad because the party is over, but a great time to reflect on all the fun that was had. The two weeks passed so quickly, we sat there recalling the fun moments, the various places visited, the experiences and people we met along the way... the only difference being that on Squander a new chapter…

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A Caribbean Christmas – Sunshine, Palm Trees & Rum!

The Atlantic crossing is fast becoming a distant memory, as I attempt to recollect the past four weeks of fun times, friends, family - celebrating Christmas and new year, absorbing the vibe of three separate Caribbean nations and feeling like a kid in a candy shop with all of the beautiful, sweet, cheap rum at our disposal! For those of you that followed our progress across the Atlantic, you may recall that the lack of trade winds in the early part of our crossing was threatening our…

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The 2010 Atlantic crossing – 12 Short stories.

In an effort to give as varied a perspective as possible, I suggested to team SAGA (Simon, Agatha, Gavin & Andy) that we each set a topic for each other and with 3 topics each we will come up with 12 short stories from our individual perspectives. The idea was embraced wholeheartedly both in terms of setting varied topics and in writing detailed accounts of what we experienced. Here are the topics by Author, in alphabetical order. Agatha's Stories Crossing an ocean - the expected and the…

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Canary Islands to Cabo Verde – Fish, sunshine and warm water!

Tuesday, 16th December 2010 - most things were done, the weather window looked OK for at least 4 days and it was time to set sail for the 900 or so miles from Las Palmas to Mindelo in Cabo verde. A few last minute things, we got the scuba diving compressor serviced, printed up some promotional materials for the best electronic chart swapping network in the world - www.chartswap.net and finally stopped at the local Fuel dock for some cheap diesel, water and a couple of ice…

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How to make a Mahi Mahi lure onboard a sailing yacht.

On our recent crossing of the Atlantic from Europe to Barbados, we had a particularly bad run with losing fishing equipment, including one entire Rig (Rod, reel, line, lure - the friggin lot gone!!). Some of it I blame on myself, some of it is simply low quality equipment that fails and the majority is just part and parcel of trawling lines behind us for over 10,000 Nautical Miles in the past 9 months. Simon holding up a decent Mahi Mahi caught some 300 Nautical Miles off…

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