Arrival in Mainland Chile!

1200Z 07OCT19, Easter Island to Puerto Montt Passage, ARRIVAL to mainland Chile 🇨🇱! Anchored off of the lighthouse awaiting tide and current for the canal.

The last 16 hours of sailing were good. We kept reefs in the sails to stay slow and time our arrival for the morning. The skies cleared and we could see the half moon, stars and then the lighthouse and some light pollution from the inland Chilean towns. The winds gradually subsided as did the seas. It was a lovely sunrise over land. We were able to sail just about all the way to the anchorage and dropped the anchor around 9am local with a rainbow to welcome us. It's beautiful here. Feels a bit like the Pacific Northwest Islands of Washington and British Columbia (with inland sailing similar to the Puget Sound), but with the cliffs of France. Looking forward to being able to see the mountains too.

2046 nautical miles
15 days, 16 hours
5.4 knots average speed over ground
63.1 hours of engine time
230 liters of fuel consumed (approximately)
220 liters of water consumed (we really want a water maker so that severe rations are not necessary!)
100 liters (approximately) of rain water caught from the skies
Numerous birds - albatrosses and petrels - sighted but no marine mammals
1 tuna (blue fin?), caught, landed and eaten
Breakages - 1 split seam on the genoa; 1 Watt & Sea propeller sheered off a blade; 1 sailbag zipper coil broken (which probably means the whole zipper has to be replaced); 1 iPad succumbed to the elements; 1 bowl broken

Overall this was a challenging passage. It required a series of decisions and actions to ensure that timing, weather and sailing capabilities were matched the best that we could with what we had. We did not have the normal luxury of waiting for a great weather window as we were starting from Easter Island, an unprotected island 2000nm from any other land where it would be better to be offshore than at anchor in bad weather. Additionally we were south of the trade winds and had to deal with weather systems (highs and lows) that continuously develop and move through. We saw some high wind systems and we had some days without wind. Certainly satellite communications, and wind and forecasting software are wonderful additions to the modern passage making toolkit and helped us to be as successful as we were. It is a passage that makes you proud for having successfully navigated and sailed well through it, and one that will seem like it was easier than it was after a few good nights' sleep.

We will pass through the canal this afternoon and then take our time traveling the last 50nm to Puerto Montt. We have been offshore passage-making for 34 of the last 42 days sailing 4352nm! We plan to anchor out a few nights and slow down to rest. If we find a nice quiet anchorage we may stay for 2 nights to catch up on sleep and to do some boat tidying. We probably won't go ashore until the marina in Puerto Montt but we will see - the dinghy is currently stowed and we would have to modify our zarpe (transit authorization). In the meantime we have food and drink, will play some board games and catch up on some sleep under our thick, fluffy, down duvets!

(I'll add pictures to the Facebook post)


  1. Alternatives of secluded bays to rest: Quemchi or Mechuque.

    1. Muchas gracias Felipe! Those look like great spots. We are excited to be here and explore.

      We went through the canal yesterday afternoon and anchored off of Puerto Abtao before dark. This is the calmest, smoothest anchorage we have been in, in a very long time!

  2. You arrived in the best season! In spring and summer the area is great.

    Let me know if you need more tips around Chiloe or help check-in into Chile (no an issue, but between immigration, customs and the navy, it my be a little cumbersome)

    Also, in due time consider crossing east were the cordillera meets the sea. It's a must.

    I sent you an e-mail address ina prior comment, if you want privacy.

    Welcome again.