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Fast downwind sail – arrived at Graciosa, Canary Islands

May 15, 2015

SInce 24 hours we are now safely anchored in the bay of Playa Francesa, Graciosa Island. A narrow sound separates Isla Graciosa from its much bigger neighbour island of Lanzarote. The sail from Madeira to this anchorage was about 270 miles, and we underestimated the speed that averaged 7.2 knots so we had to slow down to avoid arriving in darkness, cloud cover, new moon. Slowing down meant using almost zero headsail, spending 5 hours doing the last 15 miles in heavy swell, not very nice, but we think it was the right thing to do with these conditions and a unknown anchorage. We are alone except for a german sailing boat here in the bay which can have more than 2 dozen boats in the “high season”, i.e. Sept-Nov. The water temp is between 22-23 C, and the air is ca 24 C.  As the wind is still up in the 30+ knots until tomorrow noon, we will stay onboard, reading, checking news on the net, planning a feast dinner made up of minced meat and cabbage (aka “Kålpudding” in Swedish) for this evening. Tomorrow we expect to be able to use our rib to get to the small village of Caleta del Sebo, a small settlement with a marina, a couples of mini mercados, restaurants and bars, 3-4 km from our anchorage. The day before we arrived, Lanzarote measured 41.3 C, which is a record May temp in Spain since weather stats started in the 50’s.

From → Sailing Notes

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