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Mindelo, Sao Vicente

November 29, 2015

We really enjoyed the week spent in the Palmeira anchorage. We understand those who sense the poverty and lack of ordinary services is hard to accept. Very soon after we got here we felt something else. The people, very few with a proper “job”, were all very happy, not requiring handouts and really helpful towards yachties. Besides busloads of tourists from the “charter town” St Maria spending 20 minutes watching the fish market, the 30 or so yachts anchored were the only tourists in this small vilage. Naturally we spent time with fellow yachties, but also a half a day with Lars and Kerstin, owners of the Swedish yacht Naranja3 who we met several times in Galicia summer of 2014. Lars and Kerstin took us on an island tour from north to south, partially dirt roads. Fascinating landscape of Volcanic peaks with flat sand in between. They stayed at the tourist resort center Santa Maria were we had a late lunch.

After a week we checked out at the Marine Police station and had a fast night sail of 90 nm to Tarrafal, the only realistic anchorage at the island of Sant Nicolaus. The anchorage was ok with firm black sand at 12 meters with crystal clear waters. The only problem was that the near mountain ridge, several hundred meters high,  gave us wind gusts of up to 35 knots and in between no wind. This means that you need a lot of margins to your boat neighbors, allowing 360 degree swinging. After a night with a lot of swell we gave up and headed for Sao Vicente, Grand Port of Mindelo. Perfect 50 nm day sail, no waves, 1-1.5 knot favorable current, so most of the time we made more than 8 knots.

We have now spent two night at anchor here in Midelo, in theory this anchorage is very protected, though a swell sneaks in making some rolling inevitable, but manageable.

Around us are a number of derelict ships. Interestingly, we left for some shopping around 10 this morning and came back around 3. During this time our closest neighbor, a 300 feet long tanker managed to turn 90 degrees and is now at rest at 6 meters deep water. Fortunately no one seems to have been injured and so far no leaks of oil or fuel are visible.

From → Sailing Notes

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