Baringo in the Arabian Sea

Baringo departed Uligan island in the northern Maldives on Saturday 12th February heading north to Karachi as the safest route to avoid the pirates. We are in company with 5 other boats who have decided to take this route. Several other yachts have gone directly across to Salalah, and others have decided to put their yachts on transport ships to the Mediterranean. One skipper did the direct crossing single handed! Pirate avoidance strategies were from one extreme to the other it seemed.

We sailed between 40 -100 miles off the coast of India and the wind was reasonable for the first 3 days although we were close hauled. Then it became very strong with the accompanying large seas for 36 hours and as always this was tiring for us and Baringo, but luckily we all held up without any major breakages. We discovered en route that Karachi Harbour dues were US$450 and the yacht club commodore could not waive them even though we had reciprocal membership there through the RHKYC. So we had to find somewhere else.

Our new destination was now Muscat, Oman, but we all kept heading North close to the Indian coast rather than a more direct route. Despite the windward sailing being difficult and frustrating at times it was preferable to a pirate attack. We passed Mumbai wondering about a stop for fuel but without an Indian visa this could have been complicated although 2 members of the group did stop at a fishing village further south and managed to refuel and provision without any problem.

So far equipment has behaved but we still have no generator (wind or diesel ) but the engine is charging the batteries and we are getting more experienced at managing our power supply and demand. The water maker is wonderful although it did stop working one night … don’t these things always happen in the dark … but it was only an air lock as the light of day revealed.

Further north the wind direction became more favourable and we had some good sailing in the right direction with a calm sea. We learnt of the fate of Quest which is a horrible tragedy and rather closer to home from here than was desirable especially as we had originally been with their group but we dont know if Quest was on the route recommended by the Blue water rally or had chosen their own.

The total journey from Uligan to Muscat is 1,537 miles but we are now only 240 miles from Muscat where we are hoping the comforts of a nice marina await us as they will certainly be appreciated. Luckily I had seriously over-provisioned – a lesson learnt from past experience but we are really digging deep into long forgotten food as the
journey has been considerably longer than expected.

I hope we can add our photos if we get to Muscat and have internet access so do keep reading!

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8 Responses to Baringo in the Arabian Sea

  1. Jane Houng says:

    Great to receive some news from you and to know that you are both safe and sound. As long as there isn’t an uprising in Oman or a particularly adventurous pirate passing by, sounds like you’ll be fine. HK is utterly dull by comparison and the weather has been dismal until yesterday.

  2. Sam & Gilly says:

    Much relieved to know that you are safe. We have been most concerned! Please call us when you reach Muscat. We are moving this weekend to Ras al Khaimah but would love to try and meet up if at all possible or help in any way. Just let us know by e-mail, text or phone call. I have e-mailed you our mobile nos which will not change. Love to you both. xxxx

  3. Chris and Monica S/Y Samasan says:

    so pleased to hear you are safe and the passage is going well. Best wishes for that comfortable marina.
    Chris

  4. Skiva says:

    I read about the Quest tragedy in the newspaper and very worried about you two. Glad to know that you are safe, have you considered cutting short your trip and come back to HK earlier?

    Skiva

  5. Josephine Davies says:

    Stay safe. Rest awhile in the marina. Thinking of you both.
    Much love xx

  6. Annie Bell says:

    I’m your latest Baringo Blog fan. Just found you!
    Wonderful reading all your emails and gaining a taste of your new life at sea. Its a million miles from doctoring and NHS- lucky you!
    Sail safe, and the 3 of you look after each other.
    PS. Theres a v. good, inexpensive suba divingclub/hotel on the coast at Bandar Al Jissah. Can recommend. Lots of love Annie Bell. Norwich UK

  7. Patricia and Graham says:

    Dear John and Julia and co:

    I’ve been thinking about you so much and just logged on to your site this morning to get an update. Of course, we worry about you; such intrepid adventurers you are! We are in a temporary flat in Hammersmith until May, then we move to Surrey to our new house. The Blue Badge course has been hard work, but at least I’m on dry land! We are off to SA for 3 weeks in two weeks. Lots of love, P & G xx

  8. Sarah Shelton says:

    Hi John and Julia,

    I do hope you are OK……..it will be wonderful to find dry land for a while and rest and recoup! We are all well here in London…..spring is in the air. I am well, the children are fine… Chis is about is going to work in Dubai for a couple of years from May and Jonnie and Fi and well and enjoying London. I am back in the acting world and have been doing some short films and now rehearsing for a Sondheim musical….so its deja vu! It will be good to catch up with you sometime. I am doing a mini cruise in Dalamatia in June!!

    Lots of love to you both.
    Sarah

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