Wednesday, 26 January 2011

The Voyages of Shirahae

As stated previously, Zen was launched in 1986 as Shirahae ("Great South Wind").  Her first owners were Mr & Mrs Amanuma, who have kindly given permission for this information to be posted.

In May 1988 Shirahae sailed from Yokohama to San Francisco.  From there she sailed south visiting ports along the west coast of the Americas, including Los Angeles, San Diego, La Paz, Acapulco, Golfito, Salinas, Callao, Antofagasta, Valparaiso, Valdivia, Puerto Montt, Golfo de Ancud and various locations in Patagonia.

In Patagonia Shirahae visited Caleta Austral, Caleta Connor, Puerto Eden, Caleta Sandy, Puerto Charrua, Bahia Wide, Puerto Mayne, Bahia Isthmus, Isla Tamar, Caleta Notch, Puerto San Miguel, Cabo San Isidro, Puerto San Juan and Punta Arenas.  From Punta Arenas Shirahae continued to Puerto Sofia, Bahia Morris, Seno Ocasion, Puerto Fortuna, Bahia Romanche, Puerto Williams, Caleta Banner, Puerto Toro and Isla Maxwell.  From Isla Maxwell Shirahae sailed around Cape Horn (on 9th March 1990) and on to Caleta Banner, Puerto Espanol and Bueno Suceso.  Most of these locations are described in the downloadable US Sailing Directions for the area (Pub 124 and Pub 125).  For pictures of the area see Beth and Evans's (contemporary high latitude cruisers) Chile Web Page.

From Beuno Suceso Shirahae departed Patagonia and sailed north up the east coast of South America, stopping at Mar del Plata, Montivideo, Rio de Janeiro, Salvador and Natal.  Her voyage continued west to the Panama Canal via Cayenne, Georgetown, Port of Spain, Pampatar, Mochima, Cayo de Aqua, Kralendijk, Curacau and Cartagena.  Shirahae transited the Panama Canal in November 1991.

From Panama returned to Golfito, completing her circumnavigation of South America.  From there she sailed to Hawaii and home to Japan, arriving in May 1992.

Shirahae's four year voyage amounts to at least 30,000nm port to port, with the log mileage probably significantly higher.  What an adventure!

Here is an illustration of Shirahae's voyage (black track), plus Mr & Mrs Amanuma's later voyage in a second Shirahae.

Shirahae Voyage 1988-1992 (black track)
The Amanumas wrote a Cruising Guide (in Japanese) following their second voyage.  Their web site is  A Japan Times Article describes part of their voyage (after first describing another Japanese family's adventures.

No comments:

Post a Comment