Here we are following.... our Dreams! 🥰
Well those too, but actually we are following the winds and currents, rather than fighting our way against them.
After almost 7 weeks in Isla Mujeres, it was time to change plans as our winds that we needed to take us South weren't really making an appearance long enough for us to sail out. The weather patterns were changing.
Sailing East it was going to be!
Direction Cuba! Plan A was to sail to Cuba's western tip, wait out strong southern winds, then continue south to Cayo Largo. Plan B was to sail clockwise around Cuba...the long way.
The strong current and the winds took us nicely around Cuba on the Northern side, and actually quite fast towards the Dry Tortugas. Our heading was 90 degrees (due east) but our course was 30 degrees (almost north). Back to the US we go!
Almost before we knew it, the Gulf Stream current had grabbed us and sent us 60nm north! We ended up being too far off shore from the western tip to be able to get out of the current and motor around Cuba counterclockwise with our worn cutlass bearing. Motoring against the winds and waves is not our idea of sailing around the world. Motoring for days and days at a time defeats the purpose of sailing around the world after all! In emergencies ok, but...this wasn't one!
The Dry Tortugas were a very interesting place, with Fort Jefferson built on one Key, and a decommissioned lighthouse on another Key.
While at anchor for a couple days, we got the chance to explore the Fort, snorkel the waters and get some rest!
3 days and 2 nights at sea sailing isn't bad at all, but a little rest, especially sleep, is always good to get after being up so long! We found protection behind the fort and waited out 47kt winds.
Before sailing on, we witnessed a migrant boat with about 50 migrants running onto the Island's reef to make landfall and then be taken away to the mainland for processing by Florida's Fish& Wildlife ship.
"Just another day here on this Island" a Park Ranger said to us. 😳 He also said the number of migrants coming to the Dry Tortugas has increased.
Continuing our journey, Eastbound, the Florida Keys were next. Key West, Florida.
Here we finally can haul our boat out to fix the cutlass bearing that we damaged as a result of colliding with something in the Yazoo River going down the Mighty Mississippi River.
And where to next?
Our goal is still the Panama Canal of course, and as we relented to the fact that it's always about the wind and current, well weather too, and not about us 🤣😉, a direct route might not always get us there faster! Or safer....
Bahamas or Cuba are what's being explored.