SY Little Mermaid

Photoalbum - Home - Pacific Ocean, from Galapagos to Marquesas 3022 miles in 26 days and 6 hours

Today i was working all day: the back locker. With that big waves I got 30 cm water inside. All tins and cans and every thing inside was swimming in salt water. It is good that here is plenty sweet water for free. So i took every thing out, even the old anchor chain, really everything! Then I washed every single thing and the locker with sweet water and when it was dry i put things in new plastic bags and back in place. Now is again time for Cherie, I don't want to go on shore too late - nono flys and muskitos... - and I am exausted. Tomorrow I'll wash the hull. Mermaid is dirty like a floating garbage tin! You wouldn't recognise her!
I should write you how beautifull it is here, but this will be for tomorrow!

First I was sleeping very long, after breakfast I took Cherie on shore. You shoud see her how happy she was. Runing in rounds, she just couldn't stop. Then we were chasing coconuts and jumping and swimming and and and... On the way back home, I stopped at one boat to say hello and learned that you have to go to shop very early or you have to order your bread in advance... So we went for bread, but it was out yet, I was really late. That lady gave me one of her baguettes. At the same time I learned that the bank is open only till 3:30 pm and then all is closed till Monday. But I needed some eggs and a spark plug for energizer. So I went to town, changed money, got what I wanted, back home, again time for Cherie. An Austrian sailboat cought a huge 2,5 m merlin fish and they went around all boats giving filets away... Got a big peace! Enough for me and both girls! I was then invited for a glas of wine and at the end too tired to start the computer. But you know, I can not sleep good at night - I still have night watch in my brain..

I finally arrived to HIVA OA after 26 days and 6 hours. Now I will relax and explore this beautiful island together with my dog "Cherie"

I'm doing fine, tired and fed up to be alone... looking forward to go "home" (next island) soon and there to anchor an go on land... Again so little wind, I still have 220 mls to go. But today is very cloudy, rainy, squalls on every side where I look. Every thing is wet, sails flapping, cockpit slippery. And I had a bad night...
Maybe I should have some breakfast, I'll feel better then... And hopefully later today the sun will shine again :)
It starts to be difficult with sailmail to get a connection. It works only between 1 am and 2 am utc time. Now is evening, I didn't got thru at sailmail...
batteries empty can not send...
Sun showed for few hours, but now is again all dark cloudy and squalls. I tried to run Energiser, it started nicely, but stopped less then a minute after. It starts good every time but every time it stops. Spark plug is then every time all dirty... What can that be? Gasoline?
Position: 09.10 S 135.24 W, still 110 mls left

as usual - the last few days are the longest!
New position: 08.54 S 134.01 W still 300 mls to go.
Today we had no wind, sails flapping, making plenty noise. In the small waves I got sick. I run Mercury for 1 hour, runs very nice, I cleaned the water intake. Other is nothing to do, just to go on... :) Reading books, sleeping if possible, eating and drinking what I call now live elixir (water). Ah, watermaker is not working any more, it seams to be the fuse inside and that this is my only problem... :)
I decided to wait until anchorage to dismantle the box. Tabita is sleeping most of time. When we have night watch with Cherie, Tabi comes and sits on the step and watch us. Cherie is fine, before sunset she likes to play for half hour. Sometimes she sleeps outside and Ifeel better. At least she could evtl. hear a boat.... Most of them are not using radar, so my radar detector doesn't signal them!

I had a nice peace full day today, no wind, no waves.... Doing 2,5 - 3 kt - slow. Still have 365 miles to do. Position 08.41 S 132.44 W.
Now the last boat - 80 mls behind me - is taking water in, thru prop shaft. And they have a shark living under their boat. With that they can not go swimming and plug some wood in the hole. They asked me to watch for them.
So i just think it would be good to have some epoxy or some putty which harden IN salt water. I don't have anything ...
I was looking the charts and making plans - where to go, which island to visit. Very exciting! Here are so many things to do and islands to see! The time goes so fast, till you look around a week is gone!

I had a very busy night. 3 boats and 2 wander weather bouys and 2 squalls.... Keep me up almost all the night. Today the wind calmed down, waves too, so now we're crowling forwards with only 3 kt again. Now that I'm so near the miles became longer :)
Everything is ok. Still talking with my friends on ssb every day, this is so important from my psych....One boat is there yet, the other is 60 mls behind me.
Position: 08.16 S and 131.05 W, rest 469 mls to go

Our new position is 07.50 S and 129.20 W.
Today we had 5 - 10 kt wind and 3 - 4 ft waves, sunshine, nice but slow sailing. Doing only 2 - 3 kt per hour.
My journey will end - soon I hope! I still have 570 miles to go. Now I have only 5 - 10 kt wind and also the little waves 3 - 5 ft make it very rolly and the sails are flapping wave up, wave down.... But I'm still doing 2 - 3 kt, what is much better than nothing! The growth underneath is about 5 cm long now, I cleaned the engine as much as I could and the back of the boat. But I don't go sweaming here, no no no! Mercury runs nicely, I run it 15 min yesterday, but water output is only half of normal - growth. I think I'll not need to use Mercury, only to go into the anchorage, maybe 1 hour? It should be ok.

The seas have calmed down, the winds too. So I'm sailing peace full with 4 knots... Still 670 miles to go!

good morning from the 7 seas
here we're fine now, the seas have calm down, it is rolly but not dangereus any more.
position 06 47 S, 125 02 W, 2163 mls from Galapagos, still have 823 mls to go.

Here we have since 4 days very big vawes, 12 - 15 ft. Mountains! Newer saw something like this! And I'm scared. There is nobody whom I can tell this... Sometimes I try to hide in my bed and cover over the ears, but then again I can not stand this uncertainity and I go out and watch the waves. Sometimes this helps, other times it makes it even worse. I use the live jacket all the time outside and Cherie is on the rope with her jacket. We don't play any more. She's watching me with her big eyes, but I can't help her. Only Tabi is - as usual - in the bed and doesn't care... As long she gets her food and pipibox...
The weather fax doesn't show any better weather for next 3 days. But I hope! At least a little bit better?!

Be happy that you are not on the seas! The big waves just don't stop. I have enough of it. My head is tired.
Position 05.39 S and 122.05 W, 1955 mls done, rest 1025...

The really bad weather cooled down by midnight, after that I had 3 hours of changing winds and sail trimming, but by 3 am I went to bed and slept till 8 am. Today the sun is shining again. The seas are still pretty high 8-9 ft, maybe some 12 ft, wind 15 - 20 kt but nice steady. I'm doing a very good run; 1800 miles from Galapagos in 15 days, still have 1175 to go. Maybe 8 - 10 days

We have some nasty weather, squalls with gusts of wind 25 - 30 kt and up to 12 ft waves. Last night was a hell and now at 8 pm it starts again! I'm tired. Last night one wave throw me thru the cockpit and I got bad bruises on my neck, all my back and both arms. If I go to bed it is like in a loundry maschine, rolling, flying...
One of the 2 boats with whom I talk on a SSB is only 60 miles from me, this makes me feel a bit better.
My position is 04.48 S and 118.10 W
1705 miles from Galapagos and 1260 from Marquesas.


We had a bad night and all the day today, too. Big waves and squalls. It was very very lucky I noticed and repaired the buegel yesterday!
Mermaid is doing fine, 120 miles in last 24 hours.
Present position : 04.37 S and 116.00 W
Distances: to Marquesas 1396 miles (more than half way done!) to Galapagos 1572 miles, to Panama 2330 miles


Thank god that epoxy exist, thank inventer of west system, thank precaution that I took some epoxy with me, thank Morten(SIOC) who tought me to think and do things and finally thank me for beeing so brave....
Why all this Thanks?
First of all: it is true!
Second: the buegel on the back of the boat broke! You know: where are the sun panels and the wind generator. The stainless stil pipe broke in 2 peaces and the part with sun panels was happily hanging down. The broken metal was chafing the cables of wind generator.
First i thought to call for help, but I remembered that I'm alone on the wide wide ocean.
So what? I couldn't leave the cables being sewn thru, I took isolier tape and wrapped every chaffen part of cables. If there would be a second person to hold the buegel, I would cut the bad cables and make them new. But I couldn't do all of this alone. As soon I repared one cable and started with the next one, the first one was chaffing again... Then I duct-taped the pipe together as good as I could. It was looking pretty much like my thomb after the accident! Hey why not? I took a bandage, put it around the pipe and instead of a cast (that disolve if it gets wet) i used EPOXY ! I hope it will hold for at least 2 more weeks, until I arrive to the anchorage!
So now I deserved to have some lunch. My hands are burning where I was working with epoxy. But I couldn't use other tools. The waves are big enough and all the time I have to hold everything so it doesn't roll around. Also to work I bind myself to the buegel to have 2 hands free to work with... At least the weather is dry, sunny and the evening is still 5 hours away. Epoxy have time to harden.

This time I had a good night, quiet and doing 5-6 kt. The roller coaster started at the very first day light this morning and since we're doing 5,9 - 7,4 kt incl. current. Waves are crazy, I can not work any thing! Just sitting around and waiting to arrive in Marquesas... What is my job right now! On Friday (= exact 2 weeks) I'll reach half of the way!
Yesterday I made 142 miles, today 136. The girls are laying and not moving. Cherie opted for a save solution this morning and did all her bussines in the cockpit, what is also ok.
I had to switch the fridge off tonight, batteries were at 11,30 V. The weather here is nice, but the sky is full of small white clouds, it is not so sunny. We would have now enough wind for wind generator, but his engine is heavy and falls down with each wave. Untill it finds the wind again and starts turning, next wave turns it away again - so it is not providing much. If we will have some quiet time, I'll start the energizer, but like this - it's impossible.
i'm not sure if I'm not getting sea sick :) it is crazy! Little Mermaid is like a jumping goat! I only hope we did our job good and every thing is as solid and strong as it should be!
The scary time ended at 10pm, by then i was still doing 6,5 to 7,4 kt, but the waves were acceptable for me so I went to bed. But every hour was something wrong. By 11:30 pm was no wind, by 01:15 am we had raffals of strong wind but not so high waves like in the evening, by 3 amI said I'm not going to get up any more till sunrise, I was so tired... but at 4 am I was out again and at 5:30 and 6:30 (beginning of slight daylight) and I finaly got up at 9 am with beautiful sunshine, small waves and doing 6,5 kt! So a good day can begin with a lekker breakfast! Cherie got a cup of milk! Then I did some photos to document my life here. Now it is yet the boat who told me to stay up north (3 - 4 deg South) because from 5 deg S there are nasty waves! Here I also have nice current with me!
Position: 03.52 S 108.37 W, made 1119 miles, rest 1835 miles.

Position 03.45 S 107.09 W, made 1029 miles, still 1922 to go... Weather just as last night, shortly before sundown the wind cames up, now I'm doing 6 - 7 kt, heeling uncomfortably, big waves. Hope I'll manage to sleep a little.

My position 03.44 S 106.15 W, done 975 mls = 1/3 of the journey!!!!!
We are getting much wind and Little Mermaid is speeding - scary in the dark, surfing on the waves....!
Monday morning:
Oh, what a nite! First i was scared doing 7 - 8 kt and big waves carrying me, surfing... so i didn't dare to go to bed. I was sitting on the door with my swiming west on. Right after I decided that wind is a bit less and went to bed, at 3 am there was no more wind and sails were flapping with terrible noise. Of course noise in a bed is much more than in the cockpit! So I went out again, steering by hand - Aries couldn't make it without wind. But we have some current and were still doing 1,6 - 2 kt! In the mortning by first daylight i cleaned the engine water intake and started it - no problem! I run engine for 2 hours nicely! Now i'm sailing again, very little wind, and i'm going to bed!

Ii'm sailing again (just like I did every day this week :) In exact 7 days I made 763 miles, if it goes on like this Ii'll be in Marquesas soon! Cool, isn't it? But I saw underneath the growth is yet ca 1 cm long, well I don't know how dense? Tomorrow or first day with more calm seas, I'll hung down and brosh waterintake from Mercury's engine. If I clean it every week, it should not be a problem. But i can't clean the hull. I don't dare go diving and leave the boat unattended. Today i was watching a movie "the elf". It was fun and occupied me for a while, but I always have to be carefull with amps...

we had a beautiful night and almost the whole day. 2-3 ft waves and just the right wind to go 5kt, perfect! But now, since 2 hours the waves became quite big and with not enough wind my sails are colapsing - so i put a spinaker pole up to hold genova. also the wind is more from behind and the main sail takes much wind away from genova... a bit a tricky and unpleasent situation. At night Ii'm afraid that situation will change and I'll have to go on the bow in a dark... Position 03.42 S 101.15 W, I made 670 miles. Every body is fine, cherie was eating bananas, grapefruit and carrots - with a strange face, but she wants allways what I eat!

03.32 S and 99.24 W, I made 118 mls in last 24 hrs, but now wind slowed down and my sail is flapping again. i'm still waiting to see what comes before I put spinnaker pole back on. I don't like to handle that one at dark - but if it really need to be done....
2384 nm left

I had a good night again. At midnight i had to take the spinaker pole down, we got some more wind (i say 15kt, a boat 60 mls from here - with higher mast and electronic meter says 25 kt). That was an action! I was all splashed and transpired. But for sure i used a life vest and line! So I made 400 mls and have 2500 more to go. Position 03.10 S and 96.52 W.

I had a very good night. no wind, no waves, i went to bed and slept well. Every 2 hours i looked outside and no changes. i was drifting with 2.2 kt towards Marquesas. Now i feel good, optimistic. Since 7 am we have a tiny bit more wind and sunshine for our batteries and doing again our 3.5 to 4 kt. The live looks just fine. have yet 305 miles behind us in only 3 days! Position 03.00 S and 95.20 w.

lets go sailing over the 7 seas.... 2910 miles to go! we are sailing, my girls and me!
Position: 02.05 S and 92.53 W. In 24 hours we did 115 miles, it goes nice, but it is rolly and yesterday i was very sick. Now i'm taking pills, it works. Last night i stayed up in the cockpit. Every now and then a wave came crushing over the cockpit, so i had to stay hiding under the dodger. At daylight i went to bed to stretch my tired bones, what a luxury! Today i enjoyed the goulash that i cooked yesterday under severe seasickness. Here is cold, 22 deg, cloudy and windy, in the night it is very humid, the cockpit is all wet and i'm happy to have some real shoes. Socks get soaked very fast.
We have wind and waves strait from left side. Since the sea is enough calme, this is ok, but bigger waves i don't like to take from the side! Average is 4,8 kt speed and if god will we could be there in 606 hours = 26 days, lets hope! I'm afraid i'll lose speed when shells grows underneath. But maybe with such a speed they won't. Anyway Little Mermaid will need a new antifouling, now there are yet white patches to see thru antifouling. Motor was working fine, i run it for 3 hours, with new gasoline pump it is perfect. ...seams every year we need a new one!
Now radar detector is signaling traffic on my right, but i can't see it yet.


I have now left Isla Isabela, Galapagos and sailed some 30 nm, and I have 2882 nm left untill I arrive the island Hiva Oa in Marquesas.


i'm almost ready to go, there are some few little things to do, but if i can not finish them before i leave tomorrow ca. 11 am, then i'll have to do them on the sea...
Yes, sathurday, 02.07.05 around 11 am I'll go on the way! My american friends left this morning, the german friends love it here (maybe a week more)and a new french not-quite-friends-yet will go on sunday. We'll keep meetings on ssb all together. It is always good to have somebody to talk to! And I'm realy so happy for my ssb radio and my "Johny5" Pactor!
I think that I'm quite a lucky girl! But still - i'm not comfortable to think about that long and lonely way!

Last updated November 2005 © SY Little Mermaid