Article on Las Perlas in All-at-Sea

Our article on the Las Perlas got published in the current issue (November) of the All-at-Sea Caribbean magazine. Birgit Hackl: Las Perlas — Unspoiled Nature Near Panama City, All At Sea Caribbean, November 2013, p. 36–38. Free download from allatsea.net.


Paradise regained

Finally the weather’s sunny and warm and we’ve started making dinghy excursions. Yesterday we visited Herve and Valerie (the caretakers of the village of Taravai) and got news of all the boats that we met here last time around–Valerie’s good at keeping in touch with people. We brought them a few presents (cookies, books, etc.) and in return Herve took us for a walk in… Continue reading »


Back to our favourite bay

Yesterday the front with rainy weather finally moved away from the Gambier, but despite the blue skies it was still freakin cold in the the southeasterly winds that howl right into the anchorage off Rikitea–this wind feels like it came straight from the antarctic… We moved to Baie Onemea on the western side of Taravai, where it’s wonderfully sheltered and finally warm


Spending the cyclone season in the Gambier

We considered two options for our first cyclone season in the South Pacific: Staying either in the Marquesas or the Gambier Islands. According to weather records, both archipelagos are relatively save, particularly in El Niño-neutral years. We checked out both places and our choice was easily made since we’d totally fallen in love with the Gambier Islands.


Back to soup-and-socks weather

Ever since we’ve got back it’s been grey and rainy, first because a front stalled and became stationary over us and then it left a trough behind. So we stay at home and get indoor projects on the boat done. In July all the locals assured us that the weather’d be great in spring and summer, so we feel like the weather’s taking the piss… Continue reading »


Photos of Ua Pou


Photos of Nuku Hiva


Feels like coming home

We reached the Gambier islands yesterday morning, exactly 3 months after we left here for the Marquesas to escape the cold southern-hemisphere winter. After 8 days of passage the calm anchorage off Rikitea is pure pleasure (despite a cold front that’s responsible for grey and rainy weather…). Anyway, it’s spring here, so soon the skies will clear again and we’ll be able to start exploring… Continue reading »


Rushing along!

Yesterday we were stuck under thick clouds with everchanging wind directions, gusts, rain and very annoying conditions. In the evening the wind was suddenly blowing hard from the south, so we even decided to motorsail for a while. The weather forecasts didn’t look good: the French forecast predicted strong wind from the southeast (great, that’s where we wanted to go), the grib files contradicted completely… Continue reading »



After 2 days with nice sailing conditions, we’re now back to squally, annoying weather. 200 miles to go.



Last night was really terrible. We passed through so many squalls, about 1 every hour, which slowed down our progress substantially. Not only was the permanent reefing/unreefing tedious, but also the fact that inbetween the squalls the wind was very light and from the wrong direction was frustrating. We lost many of the eastward miles we previosly had fought for so hard. Now we have… Continue reading »


Ceviche and Sashimi

This morning we were lucky and caught a medium-sized yellow-fin tuna. So we had ceviche for lunch and sashimi for dinner Leeloo had sashimi twice. We are making good progress, only in the afternoon, when we entered an area with fluky, light winds and some small squalls, our speed dropped to 3 kn.


Goodbye Marquesas

When we set off yesterday we still hadn’t decided whether we’d stop on the way in Tahuata or Fatu Hiva again, but the wind made the decision for us: 20 to 25 knots from the east (instead of 12 from the northeast…) made it impossible to reach the southern islands of the Marquesas on our tack, so we’re heading straight to the Gambier. We can… Continue reading »


Sailing south again

Yesterday we explored Ua Pou a bit: we walked up from ‘our’ bay on a little path to the coastal road and then for two hours north, because we wanted to get a view of the gigantic stone spires the island is famous for. Unfortunately it was a bit cloudy, so the highest peaks were hiding from us, but on the other hand the overcast… Continue reading »