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We’ll be setting sail for Shelter Bay in the morning, which is about an 18-24 hours sail from here. Located on Toro Point at the Caribbean end of the Panama Canal,  directly opposite Colon, Shelter bay was formerly known as Fort Sherman. As a former US Army base, it was the primary defensive base for the Caribbean sector of the Canal, and was also the center for US jungle warfare training, and was turned over to Panama in 1999. Many abandoned buildings are scattered through the area, and the creatures and I have spent lots of time exploring and watching the monkeys that fill the trees.

To prepare for the crossing, we had a long ‘to do’ list, and everyone worked hard to accomplish all of it. We filled water tanks, stowed and cleaned, made sure the wind indicator at the top of the mast was secure, checked fluid levels in the engines, and did laundry. Tomorrow morning we will stop by the fuel dock on our way out and top off both 52 gallon diesel tanks, as well as fill the 10, 5 gallon jerry cans just in case.

We are so excited to get underway, and haven’t decided yet if we are going to anchor some place along the way, or just go straight through.

Emotionally I’ve had a pretty rough day. The aching within me for my Dad and brother has been intense, and I’ve cried on and off pretty much since I woke up. Tomorrow will be a better day.

The sunset was beautiful tonight, and through it I felt peace.


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