Careening

December 7, 2013, Las Brisas Anchorage, Panama

This is a tardy post, but I want you to show you the photos.

Before starting the On Delay adventure, I didn’t know the true meaning of the word “careen”, which, according to Miriam-Webster is:

careen
1 : to put (a ship or boat) on a beach especially in order to clean, caulk, or repair the hull

As we sailed around the Caribbean, we came across various forms of the word. For example, in St. George’s, Grenada, the Carenage is now the lively, waterfront promenade along the city’s main harbor. I recall Andy telling me that it was called the Carenage because in the distance past, ships were careened there for repair. An interesting, old-fashioned technique I thought; never imagining that the following year, we’d careen On Delay.

The big tide swing in the Pacific makes careening more tractable than in the Caribbean.

Careening begins at high, falling tide. The steps are as follows:

  1. Drop anchor just off a carefully chosen beach.
  2. Tie the stern to the shore.
  3. Wait for the tide to fall.
  4. Do lots of work on the bottom of the boat.
  5. Wait for the tide to rise.
Step 2: Oscar and Diego in the dinghy, tying long lines from the stern to the rocks on shore.

Step 2: Oscar and Diego in the dinghy, tying long lines from the stern to the rocks on shore.

Step 2 continued: Diego can rarely resist an excuse to get in the water.

Step 2 cont’d: Diego can rarely resist an excuse to get in the water.

Step 3: We've waited enough. The hull is exposed.

Step 3: We’ve waited enough. The hull is exposed.

Work begins: Gianni fits the new depth transducer.

Step 4: Work begins, Gianni fits the new depth transducer.

Step 3: Diego works and Oscar smiles for the camera.

Step 4 cont’d: Diego works and Oscar smiles for the camera.

Step 3: Just what we need, more holes in the bottom of the boat.

Step 4: Just what we need, more holes in the bottom of the boat.

Step 3: The hole up close.

Step 4 cont’d: The hole, up close.

Step 3: The new electrode fitted into the hole. In theory, in the case of a lightning strike, the electricity should exit the boat from this electrode to water surface.

Step 4 cont’d: The new electrode fitted into the hole. In theory, in the case of a lightning strike, the electricity should exit the boat from this electrode to water surface.

After more than three months idle, there was a lot of growth on the props. You'd never guess that Shelter Bay applied special zinc coating to retard growth.

After more than three months idle, there was a lot of growth on the props. You’d never guess that Shelter Bay applied special zinc coating to retard growth.

Step 4 cont'd: Added bonus was that Tony and I cleaned the bottom of the boat and the bottom of the dinghy. We didn't have to pay for a diver.

Step 4 cont’d: Added bonus was that Tony and I cleaned the bottom of the dinghy and the boat (props included) while the guys did the skilled work.

Here we are a low tide. I scampered up the dry bank to get takeaway pizza for our lunches.

Step 5: Here we are a low tide. I scampered up the dry bank to get takeaway pizza for our lunches.

This was the last major work to be done on the boat. It was the perfect opportunity for Oscar and Diego to take their tools off the boat. (Ronald, in red, came by for a sails consult.)

Step 5: This was the last major work to be done on the boat. It was the perfect opportunity for Oscar and Diego to take their tools off the boat. (Ronald, in red, came by for a sails consult.)

5 thoughts on “Careening

  1. I had no idea that careen was an intentional act. I always thought it was something bad.Very interesting post. Does this flurry of activity and the new transducer mean that you all are going to leave Panama soon?
    Cynthia

    • Hi Cynthia,
      Yes, we have left Panama at last. Pete and Gayle took the boat to Costa Rica where they are hanging out around Golfito. Tony and Jane are currently in Antigua, Guatemala, taking Spanish lessons.
      cheers, Jane

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