We have crossed the Equator and arrived in Galapagos

We set of from Panama City about 10 days ago and our now in Galapagos. I can’t include many photos as the internet is very slow here.

We enjoyed Panama City but after a final provisioning trip we were, as always glad to be moving again. We were looking forward to getting back to the islands after nearly a month near Colon and in Panama City.

The first stop after Panama City is the Las Perlas Islands about 50 miles south. We needed to do a final clean of our hull to ensure it was good enough for the Galapagos and we hoped the water was cleaner here than in Panama City. We thought the water temperature at 22c was rather cool but with wet suits on and deep breathes we got on with the job! We also visited a little settlement on one of the islands but this was very remote and although friendly we were definitely the tourist attraction!

The trip of 6 days to the Galapagos was uneventful and we were pleased to only motor for 30 hours out of 150 hours. This trip goes through the doldrums and is notorious for poor winds. Sadly our code zero which did a fantastic job in the light winds has ripped. We are hopeful we can get it mended here in Galapagos as we will miss it on the long trip to the Marquesas. You are supposed to celebrate crossing the Equator but for us it was 9.30 in the morning and after night watches that didn’t seem like a great idea. We allowed ourselves a glass of wine with supper, which we do not usually do on passage.

Just passed the Equator on the way to Galapagos

We were expecting a thorough bio security inspection on arrival in Galapagos and we had spent considerable time ensuring our hull was clean, the boat clean, no raw meat, no vegetables, many labels, numerous waste disposal bins. Clearing in was an experience.  9 officials got on board. No divers – they are all sick, apparently. It took about 1 hour and it was not really clear who was doing what. They checked our safety equipment and our paper chart, which covers the whole “other side of the world”, was deemed to be sufficient for emergency navigation. I fear there is much process, officialdom and corresponding checking but little real or useful rigour. We are all for sensible bio security but when you actually see what is happening on land we, as cruisers, are not the real risk.

A new friend!

We are just feeling a little underwhelmed by Galapagos at the moment. I know – first world problem. The cruising is very restricted and everything costs money. Perhaps we have just been spoilt and have become used to such freedom. Truthfully we are yet to see amazing wildlife but hopefully that will come. The sea lions at San Cristobal are great to watch and do get everywhere and that includes our swimming platform. Unfortunately sea lions do what sea lions do, and they are very smelly! Julian spent a good hour, moaning and grumbling, cleaning after them! Our defences have been reinforced!

Giant Cactus Trees

3 thoughts on “We have crossed the Equator and arrived in Galapagos”

  1. Dear Patricia and Julian,
    You are getting on famously. I remember swimming with the Sea Lions when Jewel and I were there in 1999. It was great fun and we did not have to clean up afterwards. Do you have a guide when you go ashore? On our trip in quite a large ship we only went ashore in a Zodiac with a guide. They were very knowledgeable. Are you allowed ashore without a guide? I guess that they have 9 officials to check you on arrival because they charge so much to visit that they have to justify the cost even if only to themselves. I do hope that your experience gets better.
    I had a lovely five weeks in Capetown with Katie and George. I caught a serious bug that needed four days in hospital, but on the plus side Juliet came out to bring me home.
    I played bridge with Maureen last night, and was well beaten, but the supper was lovely.
    Keep up the good work with your blog, it is fascinating.
    Love and good wishes,
    Peter.

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  2. As ever so interesting.    Pity the sea lion was smelly  –  he looked so comfortable and friendly. love  Maureen

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  3. Congrags on becoming Shellbacks. I have heard the sights on land are amazing but enjoyed best with a naturalist who can explain what you are seeing so I hope your tours include one. I thought the code 0 was repaired in Panama did it tear again? Looking forward to the next update.

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