Song of the Whale - Queen’s Ransom’s Caribbean crossing in support of whales
Queen’s Ransom III is a Najad 520 from Gosport, UK, crossing the Caribbean Sea in 2010
arrival: port: departure:
 Philipsburg, St. Maarten, Netherland's Antilles 19/05/2010
22/05/2010 Oranjestad, Aruba 24/05/2010
26/05/2010 Cartagena, Colombia 28/05/2010
30/05/2010 Colon, Panama 
crew: Ulric Almqvist (S), Sven Edelberg (S), Hans Piest (NL) 
these webpages are modified versions of the corresponding pages of Queen's Ransom III's original BLOG
found at:
Spinnaker breakthrough
Ulric ESE4
05/24/2010, 17 nautical miles North East of Cabo la Vela

Today, there was a breakthrough. I would not put it: "that we felt that we mastered the spinnaker for the first time on QRIII". That would be to test faith. However, we can definitely claim that we got the hang of it. The conditions were good; flat seas and 8-13 knots of wind. We flew it for 3.5 hours in the afternoon. It helped our speed and it is certainly a beautiful sail. It has a tendency to destabilize the boat swinging from port to starboard, but it wasn't too bad. I could almost relax for a moment, despite it being hoisted.

The morning started a bit murky. Absence of direct sunlight is a great relief to the heat, but there was a hazy light grey air all around. By midday, our little part of the world was basking in sunlight again. We have two butterflies onboard. Hope they make it to Cartagena. We should hopefully be there on Wednesday afternoon. We need day light and office hours as both the approach and clearing in procedures are tricky.

The progress was painfully slow through most of last night and today. We knew from our weather forecasts that winds would be light, however to our surprise we also encountered a counter current of up to 1.5 knots that is slowing us down. The Equatorial current ought to be running 1-2 knots in our favour. Quite possibly, we went to close to Peninsula de Guajira and the current flow in the opposite direction inshore. We are slowly working ourselves down the Colombian coast. That is cool and exotic; the Colombian coast!