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World ARC Leg 1: Bonaire – Santa Marta

Posted in : Starling

Yesterday we left Bonaire around 10:20 in the morning. We first had to clear out of immigration and all had to attend. After the last big rain squall passed we hiked to town. When we came there we had to wait for the immigration officer, this would take some time, so I sent the crew off for a coffee, after 15 minutes the lady arrived and handled the passports… she never asked for the crew!! typical Island style… Anyway send the crew back to the boat as the skipper sorted the last paperwork at the marina..

Then it was time to leave… we could make a nice reach to our first waypoint and beyond, what kept the boat in a balanced state, with less rolling then the previous down wind trip. This morning we gybed around and have now 185 nM to go before we arrive in Santa Marta, what hopefully is early next morning….

It’s now just past six o’clock in the morning of the 18th of January, the stars have given away to the clouds, C watch with Michelle, Tom and Sue have just gibed the boat back on the rumbline.

The wind weakened a bit so we have shaken a reef out earlier this night and are now sailing with two reefs and a Yankee 2. We took the option of reaching and gybing this leg, not like before sailing a dead run. This way we can prevent the rolling of the ship with the more then moderate sea swell.

It’s still 41 nM to go and hopefully we get in around midday. Colombia here we come!!

We managed to come in around midday (Colombian time) very salty as the last 15 nM to Santa Marta where very windy, up to 43 knots.. after safely have docked on the inner end of E pontoon we had time for some home made bread sandwiches for lunch. After that the crew started to clean and tidy the deck while the skipper walked up to the marina office to check in… after all that it was waiting for wat3r for the marina, before we could have our shower.. at 17:00 there was an ARC welcome party with canapés and rum drinks…

The next morning all the crew went on an excursion to Tayrona and skipper and mate had a maintenance day.

At night everybody split in small groups and found there own way to the boat later for an early kip.

The Second full day a big group went for an excursion to Minca. Once arrived in this funky village we slipped in two 4×4 jeeps and drove a loop through the mountains above Minca, meanwhile visiting the Victorian coffee plantage, had lunch at El Campano, stopped at Loes Pinos for an spectacular view and dipped in and stood under the waterfall pools of Marinka. Before returning in Minca where after 6&1/2 hours the taxi’s where waiting again to bring us back to the Marina.

Tomorrow is prep day for the next leg to the San Blas islands…