Wednesday, March 29, 2017

DR to PR Puerto Rico

...Goodbye DR, hello PR...
With a serious low pressure storm north of us, the normal east trade winds have been pulled to south flowing into this storm giving us a nice motor sail 150 nm from Dominican Republic to Puerto Rico where we planned to enter the USA at Puerto Real. This crossing of the Mona Passage is well known in the cruising circles to be difficult and always rough, with confused seas and unpredictable currents. Lucky for us, this passage turned out to be relatively calm with a 5 foot swell of 9 seconds with a wind blown chop of 2-3 feet.

motor sailing out of the DR for PR
The beginning of the trip was flat calm with main and jib and 2500 rpms motor sailing at 7 knots out of Samana harbor and past the capes. By midnight, we reached our point in the 1,000 to 2,000 meter waters well off the "hourglass shoals" which is known to have confused seas and crazy currents. We found the seas were a bit confused and the current was not too strong. We had a NE swell, and NW wind blown chop, and a S current, all making for a strange sea state. But overall, it was a relatively calm passage. We then turned SE for the Puerto Rican coast, aiming for the SW corner where we could check into Puerto Real harbor.

Docked in Puerto Rico
We had made reservations for all three boats at Marina Pescarderia in Puerto Real, where the the fee is $1.20/foot. This marina is in a fishing village and the people are extremely friendly and helpful, though most do not speak English. From here, we plan to make small, easy, short, early morning hops along the south shore of the Puerto Rican coast, discovering all the great towns and harbors this island has to offer. It is GREAT to back in the USA after sailing out of Florida on Super Bowl Sunday, Feb 5.


Here are some photos of this passage and arrival.

Our last days in Samana, Marina Bahia were filled with pool swims, movies and playing Mexican train. What a fantastic place to hang out, and all for $1/foot!

Our lobby where we enjoyed relaxing

Island Spirit in the shade, Radeen heading for a walk
When in the DR, drink the local and smoke the local



Departing Samana,, we motor sailed out the bay into the open North Atlantic where we found a nice 5 foot ocean swell of 9 seconds

Heading to sea with Cape Samana in the distance

The DR coast line falling away on starboard

Along the DR coastline there were many floating fish nets and traps!

As the sun came up, after our overnite run, we were looking at the west coast of Puerto Rico, what a beautiful sunrise to great us as we motor sailed into the USA.

Sunrise over Puerto Rico, welcome to USA

Our B&G Zeus as we motor sailed in to Puerto Real

First item, call into USA Customs and check into the country 

Next, raise the Puerto Rico courtesy lag on the starboard spreader


We walked around town and of course had to find the local bakery where we bought FLAN for Radeen and ice cream for Hayden. 

A short walk up to town we found the bakery

Flan for Radeen, WOW was that good!

The local waterfront houses and fishing boats


Our local store with fresh MILK and EGGS! yahoo

When in PR, you drink the local beer
Not bad for a light beer

Our local dock neighbor lights up his boat with this very coolio blue LEDs, and lots of underwater lights, add in the loud very fun Puerto Rican music and we have a P A R T Y...fun fun fun

P A R T Y on


Here are the Charts showing the run from DR to PR directly without going into Luperon or Ocean World or any of the normal stops along the way. We were lucky to have the correct weather for this run and would do it again.


This is the Overview of the course from DR to PR

You have to go out 25 NM off the DR to clear the Hourglass Shoal where waves and currents are bad

The turn around the reefs and then into the coast of PR where we made Puerto Real


Hear are some great photos as we leave the DR and head for Cabo Engano







Crazy Fish traps all along our course
Our buddy boat FEZYWIG a Lagoon 38

Lagoon 38 FEZYWIG in the ocean waves

Island Spirit in the Mona Passage heading to Puerto Rico
Photo Credit: Meloney on sv/FEZYWIG



 Here is our first sunset from Puerto Real harbour where pelican are plentiful and the harbor is calm and protected. We think we will really enjoy exploring all the harbors and towns on the south side of Puerto Rico.


2 comments:

T Knox said...

I know that you both are aware of how blessed you are to be able to see a sunrise from the cockpit of your stout vessel.The miles astern give way to the bow plowing into an expectation of future landfall......welcome to Puerto Rico.

Ellen said...

Beautiful sunset pictures! Looks just lovely!