Saturday, April 17, 2010

Arrival in Mexico

Greetings from Acapulco. After 24,000 miles of sailing and over 40 stops around the Americas, we on Ocean Watch are one country and a few weeks from arriving back in the USA in San Diego May 4th. Wow, what a long, strange, fascinating trip it has been.

Just arrived from Costa Rica where we witnessed damaged reefs first hand on the eastern, Caribbean side of the country. This is the direct result of chemical applications and run-off from the banana plantations. Very tragic. The Galapagos Islands were hot and quite interesting. It was humbling to be in the land of Darwin and see first-hand many of the species he observed. They face all kinds of environmental threats there but probably the greatest threat currently is this very strong El Nino we are observing. The El Nino of 1982 caused the extinction of one species and devastated bird, tortoise and marine populations.

We sailed around Cape Horn in January and into the fiords and southern channels of Chile, one of the most beautiful areas of the world. Unfortunately, fish farming is omnipresent and destroying the marine environment in the channels. We exited Chile just before the devastating earthquake which destroyed the marina we had been at in Valparaiso.

The sail from Miami east and eventually south was marked by strong anti-currents and adverse trade winds. Very tough going and very, very hot along the coast of Brazil. It was above 90 degrees day and night in our main cabin and bunks for a solid six weeks. Holidays in Punta Del Este, Uruguay, and Mar Del Plata, Argentina. The surprise for us was the Falkland Islands. We met young scientists who are documenting all the species of the islands. A highlight was the King Penguin colony we observed and the rugged field trip out to the site.

Just a few highlights. Great voyage, wonderful experiences all.

Best to you all. Cheers! David