Sunday, May 25, 2014

J/105 Lovingly Sailed in Chile

J/105 sailboat- sailing on lake in Chile(Lake Rapel, Chile)- Many J’s find themselves in some of the world’s most unusual, spectacular, and un-imaginable places to go sailing.  One of these happens to be a J/105 now sailing high up in the Andes Mountains in Chile, on a place called “Lake Rapel”, two hours south of the capitol of Santiago! Find it on Google maps here.

J/105 #279 has now found itself in a “happy” place, lovingly looked after by a very proud family enjoying what is essentially a “maxi-boat” on one of Chile’s largest lakes. Her enthusiastic new owner is Marcelo Tapia.  He sails mainly with his son and daughters. Most of the time with 2 or 3 onboard.

J/105 on launch ramp in ChileHow it got onto Rapel Lake is a story in and of itself!  First, he bought the boat from its American owner, shipped it to Chile and picked it up in September 2012 at the Port of San Antonio.  Next, he personally unloaded the boat from the ship, then he painted it with antifouling, cleaned and change all what was needed: engine supports, ropes, instruments, lights, new WC tubes, new chart-plotter and VHF, all new canvas made at home, etc.  He recently renewed all the keel box gelcoat, too.

J/105 family sailing on Chilean lakeThe boat was then trucked to the marina on Rapel Lake that only has launch ramps.  Then, she was backed down to the water’s edge next to a giant tree.  This was going to be the “mast crane tree”!  You guessed it.  After attaching a block & tackle high in the tree, they hauled the mast up and lowered it into the boat!  Finally, to launch the boat, they attached a long extension tongue to an old farm tractor and backed the entire trailer, boat and all, into the lake, deep enough to float the boat off!

As the happy owner motored off to its new home in a cove in front of Marcelo’s house on the lake, she ended up securing herself onto a mooring line and block of concrete that Marcelo himself had put into the bottom of the very cold freshwater lake.  Needless to say, Marcelo’s girls are ecstatic!  Enjoy the photos of their happy faces and some key parts of getting their boat to Lake Rapel.