Thursday, April 4, 2019

Off the Coast of Nicaragua: Bashing!

April 4
12.4N 87.1W

We are bashing into 20 knot SE winds and steep seas on the nose, conditions not forecast in any of the four wind models downloaded this morning! Quite a surprise. We have to run both engines to punch through the wind waves, impossible to sail through them and make any significant progress towards our destination.

We've done this before, a lot last time Intermezzo headed down to Panama back in October 2016. (I can't link to past blog posts via satellite, so look through the archives if interested.) On that trip, I got very frustrated, moaned and complained a lot about my bad luck with the wind and waves. I guess I've made some progress with being able to accept things as they actually are over the past 2 1/2 years, because I don't feel frustrated, I'm not moaning or complaining. It is noisy, tiring, and burning up our precious diesel fuel, but I am just observing with neutrality for the most part. It is all part of The Voyage.

So we're bashing to get to the strong Papagayo winds that should be blowing from the NE. I wonder what the transition will be like?

Given the current conditions and the forecasted winds closer to the Golfo de Papagayo, we decided to head to a small anchorage called El Astillero, about 75 nm SE of our current position and 23 nm NW of the gringo resort town of San Juan del Sur. This anchorage is north of the forecasted limit for the Papagayo winds and provides good protection from both wind and swell. We'll arrive Friday morning and spend the day and night there, waiting for the Papagayo winds to subside as forecasted for Saturday and Sunday.

Note the repetitive use of the world "forecasted" in the previous paragraph. If today is used as a measure of accuracy, the winds could come from any direction, at any strength, at any time. The only forecast I really trust is that the wind will probably blow from the direction I want to sail and my inner peace will continue to be challenged by bashing.