Sailing from the Galapagos, the problem is: where to go. The Marquesas are 3000 miles to the west, but also 400 miles more to the south: shall we take the straight line?
Usually, that’s not a good idea: the Galapagos are almost on the equator, and here winds tend to be very light! One must sail south, or in any direction with more south than west in it, to meet the trade winds. usually this means motoring a lot in the early stages of the voyage, with the risk of running out of fuel for the last stages of the passage.
The fleet adopted two different strategies: those with a lot of fuel opted for the rhumb line, going more west than south, while the “normal” guys like us sailed about south-west. we kept a bit more to the south than most, and this seems to have been a good idea as we sailed very fast with the help of a strong current, and we also avoided the worst of a depression that hit the rest of the fleet.
Still, we had to recover the penalty of having left one day after the others: last wednesday, when we were ready to go, our anchor turned out to be stuck to the bottom! We had to wait until the next morning when, with the help of a diver from another boat, we have been able to free ourselves.
Penalty, but also an advantage as we were able to set our strategy on the basis of the conditions met by the others.
We still have 2600 miles to go, it’s going to be long!