18 days to cross 3000 NM is a great result and much faster than expected. It was also a lot more relaxed than our Atlantic crossing (which was very rough with big seas and a constant 25 to 30 knots). We had our spinnaker up for a few days but most of the way it was mainsail + genoa. We usually put one or two reefs in before sunset to allow for a quiet night with no sail changes required in the darkness.
We left Galapagos on a Tuesday afternoon and one of the seals who had adopted our stern as his new home stayed on the boat until we were well clear of the coast. Very cute. The first few days were a bit bouncy with the swell from the Galapagos and the kids and I didn’t feel great but we got our sea legs back soon enough and enjoyed the rest of the trip. The days went by quickly and we read many books, the kids played with their toys, we had afternoon naps, ate lots of food, did some painting or colouring, tried fishing most days, … And we got used to the night shifts again too. They were split in 3 hours blocks between 8pm and 8am and we swapped every night (shifts 1 and 3 vs shifts 2 and 4) for some variety. The last 48 hours the wind picked up to around 25 knots (with peaks of 35) and the sea started building. But we didn’t mind because we were nearly there and getting there even faster. Finally, on Saturday morning we saw Fatu Hiva looming up in the distance as the sun was rising (it’s very weird by the way to see the sun moving from right to left now that we are in the Southern Hemisphere). It was a spectacular sunrise and we were taken aback by the height and rugged beauty of Fatu Hiva. We sailed along the west coast and dropped anchor in the bay of virgins between the high cliffs covered with lush green vegetation. The few other yachts at the anchorage were all welcoming us; they had also sailed a long way to get here. A bit later on our buddy boat Toucan arrived and a few arrival drinks were had! Then an early night and a good sleep (the first non interrupted 8 hours sleep since 18 days!). This morning we woke up all refreshed, cleaned the boat and then went to explore ashore. We walked up to a stunning waterfall and had a delicious swim (and a good workout for our legs as it was a 2 hour hike there and back). Everyone’s happy and it’s nice to be here!