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Destination Phuket

In April AYS represented both Seller and Buyer regarding the succesful sale of a … DeFever 44 renamed as Galileo.

Her new owner wanted to deliver her to Phuket to serve as a training vessel for the Galileo Maritime Academy. Due to COVID Restrictions the owner could not send a crew to HK to pick her up and AYS was asked to provide crew to deliver her to Subic Bay in the Philippines (distance 630 NM) where the Owner’s crew would take over to deliver her to Phuket (distance approx 1500 NM).

After thorough preparations including comprehensive servicing of all machinery and systems including Navtronic upgrades, and after a full overnight seatrial Galileo was prepared for the offshore crossing. After waiting for a suitable weather window Captain Bart Kimman, First Mate Sytske Kimman and crew Ruifen Lam departed on April 14, 1800 with moderate NE wind, a calm sea and full fuel (approx 3,000L) and water tanks (approx 2,000L) on our voyage to Subic.

The twin diesels propelled Galileo at a steady 7 knots cruising speed. The night was clear with strong moonlight and under the Hong Kong coast there were plenty fishing boats to watch out for together with some commercial ships.

We started our watch system which meant 2 hours on watch, 4 hours off watch witch thanks to a well functioning autopilot worked well during the entire trip.

The routine at sea gradually settled in and navigation - we kept regular gps positions on a paper chart in case our Navtronics would fail, regular engine in spections to make sure there would be no surprises, and last but not least providing regular (tasty) meals and enough water to keep properly hydrated. We were great believers that a happy crew makes a happy boat and lived to that principle.

The sunny weather started to get significantly hotter after day 2, the clear skys at night with their countless stars and planets were truly beautiful and we spotted a folding, flying fish and even a turtle exploring some flotsam at the surface of the blue sea.

We were making good progress and during the second half a current with a southerly set provided us a “magic carpet” with an additional 1-2 knots of speed. This helped us to complete the voyage in 80 hours instead of the planned 90 hours.

On day 3 we were accompanied by a pot of 5 beautiful and entertaining dolfins lifting our spirits and giving us a peep of the incredible life “under the sea”!

Our spirits were equally depressed by the continuous trail of plastic, styrofoam, waste and other nasty evidence of human occupation. When do we learn to better take care of our planet!

At midnight on April 17th, some 80 hours after our departure from Hong Kong we anchored in a quarantine anchorage as instructed by the Subic Bay Port authority. Our yacht agent George de Leon had made all preparations for a smooth clearance of the immigration formalities on the following morning and by midday we were free to go! By then we were berthed in the Subic Bay Marina and our handover to the new captain Anthony Gould and crew could start. A detailed tour of Galileo and demonstrations of the illusie of the yacht systems culminated in a seatrial in the Bay after which the hand over was completed. Sytske and I traveled on to Phuket by air whilst Galileo continued in a more leisurely manner cruising the beautiful waters of the Philippines and on to Phuket.

It was great after the 2 1/2 year of various levels of lockdowns to be out at sea and visit once again our beloved Philippine cruising grounds. We can’t wait for the next trip!

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