Across the Atlantic, Into the Caribbean Sea!

Date: March 2, 2017, noon Position: 17 35.43 N, 62 49.58 W

A banner milestone day today! Our brave and weather-worn gal Privateer has crossed another ocean, with the Caribbean sea is now rushing under her keel. We are almost one month at sea now out of St. Helena, and 45 days and 5,600 miles out of Cape Town, Africa. Three years ago to the day, Privateer set out from San Francisco, outward bound for the long voyage to the Marquesas. Today, we are winding down what is the longest voyage I will probably ever make at sea! Three years, three oceans, two children, seven seas, and millions of waves later…

The glowing loom of the lights of Antigua rose up from the sea, a surreal sight after a month of empty horizon. Like a gift from god, the winds abated and shifted 15 degrees to the East as we rounded under the island and sailed off to the NW. The timing could not have been any more perfect! Daybreak revealed a string of volcanic islands, laid out like a string of pearls–each island its own country.

All day today we cracked along smartly still under storm sails, in 25-30 knots of strong winds. We flew up the windward coasts of the island chain, admiring the islands from a safe distance. It’s a real pity that we have to blow past all these interesting places, but the goal of returning to Kelsey & the nearing due date kept my resolve unquestioning and absolute. Privateer ate up the ocean miles and loves the beam reach sailing of the Caribbean!

Tomorrow morning should see us making landfall at Tortola, BVI. Nep and I are due for a much-needed rest and re-provision! We talked about what we’re going to do when we get to land. I’m looking forward to ignoring the weather for a few days. Hopefully our legs will work! We’ll be like those astronauts returning to Earth from the space station climbing out of the capsule at sea.

From Tortola, we have only a week or so more at sea before Florida landfall. We have several route options and if needed, could actually island-hop with very little blue-water distance. For now, we’re going to focus on making a safe landfall and getting a good rest when we get to shore.

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