S 40 32 W 73 51

23 April 2015

Dear friends

Jan, Dave, Kris, & Erik are meandering up the coast of Chile and expect to be in the mouth of the Valdivia River this evening seeing our friends Martin, Jacque, and Tete. The sun is out, the S Pacific swell is gently rolling under us, but the afternoon sea-breeze has not arrived yet. Yesterday it arrived about 3 pm and we entered Bahia San Pedro with the GPS hitting 14 knots. Kris is supposed to start screaming at 9 knots but yesterday's performance was quite muted.

This morning, we have been comenting on an unusual line of cloud, and were amazed, when we picked up connections on our mobile phones, to read that the Calbuco Volcano errupted yesterday, the day after we left Puerto Montt. This sounds significant and close to a major city. (See movie on U-tube) BBC news tells us that there was volcanic ash on Puerto Montt the day after we left. We were lucky with our timing. We hope that the people there don't have anything corrosive to clean off.

Jan & Dave had flown into Chile on 25th March. We rented a car, got Chilean SIM cards for our telephones, and drove 100 km south to spend the week end with Martin & Jacque, whom David met last year. They are wonderfully friendly hospitable. They have 4 children & 8 grand daughters and 1 grandson living with and beside them on the fruit farm which they created and nurtured.

That Sunday we drove further south and spent a night at some natural hot springs near Villarica surrounded by 3 snow-capped volcanoes. Then it was a short drive back to Dulcinea at Marina La Estancia on the Valdivia River.

It was a pleasant surprise to find Dulcinea looking so dry and clean after nearly a year away. La Estancilla is an outpost of the Valdivia Yacht Club about 5km down the river out of town, but still in fresh water. Marcelo lives with his family at the foot of the dock, and it was an excellent place to leave Dulcinea in all respects. Next door, there is the Alwoplast Ship yard where some german-ancestored men service sailing boats & build new catamarans. They helped us with various boat-parts & jobs which were all well done.

It took us 10 days to shop, commission old equipment, install new toys, and bend sails. The starboard shower had stopped working & Jan was so thrilled with the replacement that we now have new gas water heaters on both sides of the boat. Then we motored down-stream to Isla Mancera past the wreck of the ship caught in the 1960 Tsunami fololowing the record earthquake (Richter 9). 2 days later, it was overnight to Isla Chiloe and Puerto Montt, where Kris & Erik arrived by air after their land-based tour of Patagonia.

We shall now head north west in search of warmer weather as Dulcinea's crew will enjoy day temperatures well above 10 degrees. We hope to cross via Juan Fernandez (Robinson Cruso Island), Isla De Pascua (Easter Island) to French Polynesia over the next 3 months.

You can follow our position on www.techco.ab.ca/dulcinea

Please do not hit reply to this email as this address does not accept emails. If you ever write to us using sailmail, please be careful not to return our outgoing text as sailmail has slow data tranfer via HF radio. Use gmail any time unless you need immediate response. Alternatively, will reach us the same day whether we are at sea or on land.

Love from us all

Jan Dave Kris & Erik