Sailing Life Day 298: Arrived in PUERTO RICO!!
We arrived in PUERTO RICO on our own sailboat, s/v Empress ⛵️
Now anchored here in Puerto Real! We left the Puerto Bahia Marina at 4pm and had a wrong headstart when the guy pushed our boat out of the slip without us on the wheel so we ended up hitting other slips.. almost damaging our dinghy and hit our motor engine! Thankfully we made it out of the marina without major problem.. our initial plan was to head straight but had minor issues on our stuffing box.. so Jonathan decided it's best we anchor first in Cayo Laventado which is a small island by the channel of Samana. 🏝
I slept outside to watch if our anchor is dragging while I let Jonathan to sleep so he can sail the boat later on.. at 1am I woke him up to get ready.. made his coffee and switched on our engine at 1:30am! Now, the major problem happened.. we didn't drag but we couldn't get our chain and anchor up because it got stuck on a rock! Our boatis pretty old and we didn't know much when we bought it.. the boat doesn't have a windlass so most of the time Jonathan have to manually do the anchoring!🤨⛵️
Almost an hour later, we couldn't get our chains up.. so he decided to just cut it loose or else we'll get stuck and miss our weather window! So, we had to say goodbye to our 150ft of anchor and 35 lbs of windlass.. There are no corals there but just sand and rocks and 35ft of water. 😱😭😤
By 2:30am, we finally started our journey to Puerto Rico! Our friends, Sailing Satori and Archipelago Sail went ahead of us with our original plan to buddy boat.. so we were on our own crossing the Mona Passage! I got scared a bit at first but the weather was calm.. we have other sailboat friends but we lost contact with them on the passage because we left earlier.
We were doing 5 knots on average speed and the ocean was calm.. by 10am, we were out of the signal range of Dominican Republic 😂
The passage was smooth.. saw some fishermen.. everyone said to be careful of the Mona passage and what I've read online prior to our departure that it is considered to be one of the most difficult and dangerous passage in the world (trade winds, high seas, depths variation, unpredictable currents, fast forming storms and squalls and also the Puerto Rican Trench, the deepest hole in the Atlantic ocean!) 🙏 Glad we didn't experience any of these during the journey.. super smooth motorsailing the whole time and we arrived earlier than planned! 😍
We're now here in Puerto Real in South West side of the island.. have to check in now with the immigration and customs! 💋