Boating & Biking Adventures

Author: Bernd via DL9BS/mm Page 1 of 7

Madeira to Lanzarote – Logblog 5

Land, ho! Back in Lanzarote after a 3.5 month journey! We left around 2039nm in our wake behind.

Madeira to Lanzarote – Logblog 4

The second and final night on this passage is behind us. We were kept at relative high speed and a good indication is the amount of electricity produced by the SailGen, which we have installed 6 month ago. We got 50Ah pumped into our batteries over the last 12 hours, when the solar panels take rest like myself. Yes we are back at days with 12 hour daylight and 12 hours night. Obviously the SailGen can produce another 50Ah during daylight, which comes to a total of 100Ah, which is not bad, I think. As said, on a good and fast 24h sailing day.

The night was without any further events. Some other vessels passing by in safe distance and a stronger moon sharing more light due to very less clouds. I prefer a strong moon where you can see the waves and the horizon compared to pitch dark nights, where you can see million of stars provided that there are also no clouds. The worst for me is pitch dark and no stars because of heavy clouds. Just dark. Realy dark. Edding black.
For last night dinner I got served by myself some good Swiss Rösti mixed with vegetables and a can of smoked hering filets. Too my surprise it got served with a little bit of red wine left over since Funchal. I love it. You won’t find it in a receipe book, I believe.
My 20-30min short napping has developed. Other call it power napping. I mange now to get some deep sleep rest during these short cycles and still get on my toes quickly, when the alarm bells and shouts at me. I normally get up for a stretch and take the visual 360° view as I do not want exclusively rely on AIS and Radar, while checking the chart plotter screen only. I could do that by glimsing from the cockpit bench out of my cosy sleeping back up to the screen but seamanship requires the 360° check. That’s my humble view. I also check course, speed, windvane, sails, etc. before taking the next sleep cycle. If you do that for for around 10 hours, a lot of sleep gets accumulated. Therefore I feel quite rested today morning. I have not put up the cockpit tent this time as we still have 23°C during the night.
Our next waypoint sits 6 cable length south of Punta Pechiguera, the southwesterly tip of Lanzarote. Less than 20nm to go and from there on it will be another 13nm into Puerto Calero. Arrival shall be after lunch hours.
I look forward to our arrival and a good catch-up with Elke & Ulli from SY Christina.
Fair winds…

Madeira to Lanzarote – Logblog 3

After 3h running under engine the wind came back and is now steady between 15-22kn on the beam. It should stay like this until our arrival in Puerto Calero/Lanzarote sometime tomorrow around lunch time.
The sunrise today was hidden behind some clouds and grey sky. Not sure it will change later on and the sky will clear a bit more. There will be no drizzle, rain, thunder or any kind of adverse weather conditions.

Spoken to Rainer from SY Geronimo just now on the Marine Radio. Very nice to catch up with some close sailing friends while on passage.
Got some Bolo de Caco left, which will be served for breakfast now.
Fair winds…

Madeira to Lanzarote – Logblog 2

We were down at 1.5kn boat speeds and sails started flapping around a bit. No brainer, engine on and off we move. The sea is pretty flat by now with only some old swell left. The humming noise will get us through the night for a few hours, not sure how long it takes until the wind is back. We got 350 liter of diesel left in our tank, enough to motor to Lanzarote altogether. Obviously this is not our plan and the passage routing done did not result in any engine hours at all. What shall I say? It’s hard to complain still feeling very fortunate to be out here on the ocean.
There is some good half moon out, which provides excellent visibility. Three other fellow sailing boats are about 3.5nm on our starboard side heading to Lanzarote as well. I can clearly see their navigation lights, which confirms the good visibility tonight. Unfortunately the moon will set around 2am local time and I expect a pitch dark night from then onward up to sunrise at 8am. My neighbours are a bit more patient and still under sail at 2kn.
I spoke to Jan from SY Sutje at 19:00 UTC on channel B3 Marine Radio Band, which is 4Mhz. The connection was not that good to enjoy a long chat but we will give it another try in the morning. Jan and his first mate Reinhard have left Santa Cruz de Tenerife and are heading over to Pasito Blanco on Gran Canaria, where the lady will get hauled out to enjoy some beauty retreat over the coming weeks.
By the way, the tuna steak was delicous and I am glad to have conditions where cooking remains a pleasure and not a pain.
But now, I will have some fresh Earl Grey.
Fair winds…

Madeira to Lanzarote – Logblog 1

Finally we got the right weather window for us to throw the lines and leave Funchal. It was not an easy departure from the emotional point of view as I like the city and the island, the marina team around Sergio and also had to say good-bye to Babs, Rene & Rizzo from SY Momentum of Fal. The four of us have spent some time together over the last two weeks, Besides hiking and biking we had dinner together either on their HR46 or our HR43. Preparing tuna steak as a team in a brandnew riffled pan was great fun. My job was the time keeper, which I practised many times with Susan as well. The food was delicous and we spend many quality hours together.

Three chef made perfect tuna steaks! Good fun.

Harbour Master Sergio and his whole team are prefectly organized in this marina next to the town centre. Wether these are Virginia or Heidi in the office or the Marinieros like Bruno, Danilo, Placido, Marko, etc. They are all extremely helpfull, friendly and easy approachable. I will be back, that’s a given!

After some light winds in the morning, which required a bit or motor sailing in the dead zone of Ilhas Desertas, we are now as expected cruising at 145° course over ground (COG) towards the southern tip of Lanzarote.

Winds are around 14kn and shall increase a bit more towards the second part of the passage. I waived my initial plan to go around the nothern tip of the island also due to the fact that refugee boats are still being a reality coming in from that angle towards the island. Wind and waves would probably be an argument towards approaching north but finally a decision had to be taken.
Later tonight I will try to connect on the Marine Radio with Jan from SY Sutje and Rainer from SY Geronimo, both being on passage. I hope we will have the chance to catch up on the latest fish stories!
Fair winds…

Azores to Madeira – Logblog 9

🙋‍♂️ Land, ho! Madeira

Azores to Madeira – Logblog 8

After the initial hick-ups around the wind and the chaotic waves yesterday evening it got better with the hour. Three hours of motorsailing to stabilize the lady and get her from Rock’n Roll to some kind of more harmonic dance like waltz. I found it amazing how often the wave pattern can change on such a passage. From huge wobbling football fields (very pleasant) to significant steep climbs and falls in no time. I have observed changing patterns before wihtout any changes to the wind but on this passage it was special. I wonder, if Hurricane Earl has not contributed to this but also understand, how difficutlt it is for the metereologists to predict waves on the ocean.
Luckily the wind picked up to 15-20kn over night and the wave/swell combination got back to normal. The rest of the night was uneventufull, just clocking miles at good speed and get closer to our destination. I felt it was a bit colder than the nights before and needed an extra layer. Spent a cosy night in the cockpit taking rest getting some sleep. No other ships seen.
Two squalls hit us in the last 12 hours. First one last night, when I was talking to Jan from SY Sutje on the Marine Radio at 8:00 UTC. Our connection yesterday was very good but then it started to shake and I had to take full attention to the boat, Although I was already in reef #2 on the mainsail for the night, I quickly furled in the foresail to reef #1 and we got through the short period of time quite well with only 10-15kn of gusts on top of the 10kn wind we had at that time while motorsailing. It takes about 15min as these squalls move extremely fast. I can see them on the radar coming and also get an indication how much rain they imply. Easy during the day, but bit more difficult during the night and for this the radar is a good helper. It also give you a chance to slow down and let a potential squall pass your courseline ahead of you. Their impact is very local. The second one came this morning and was less significant.
Looking forward to another stop-over in Funchal Madeira.
Fair winds…

Azores to Madeira – Logblog 7

Azores to Madeira – Logblog 6

The night was accompanied with comfortable winds and good rest. With the first reef in the main we made good progress towards Madeira. As per the forecast it has now picked up a bit to 25kn and I hope it will stay there as this is the value predicted by Menno after looking at his raw data. I have put another reef in the foresail and we are flying along with 6kn boat speed.

The wind came with the clouds and one of them passed through 2-3 miles ahead of us deploying some rain. It was our fortune, that we missed the rain by such a short distance. In a few hours the wind will get back to 15kn and we can reef out again.

There are two sailing manouvers planned for today. We will first get the foresail shifted to enjoy some butterfly sailing for a while and then I expect in the afternoon hours to gybe the main sail and take the spinnaker pole back in. This will then bring us to the western tip of Madeira where the – by then notherly winds – will drop to zero and we will motor the last 20nm into Funchal. At least we have a plan.

Fair winds…&…bon weekend.

Azores to Madeira – Logblog 5

It was a day pure bluewater sailing today with ”Fair winds and following seas” in our favour. I kept working on the trim and sails optimisation under various aspects. Eliminating noise coming out of the boom and its connections and ensuring the Hydrovane has minimum work to do by optimized balance of the sails and the main rudder. I kept the apparent wind angle (AWA) at 120 ° not being keen to go much higher in these rolling waves as this will reduce the risk to get into an uncontrolled gybe. Besides running the preventer line for the boom at outer sailing position I have found a mechanism to fix it a lower angles and same time reducing the cracking noise. A line from the boom end to the after cleat back to our spare winch is a good additional fix operated from the cockpit.

The snapshot above shows the forecast for the night. Should all be pleasant as I am convineced that the gusts for tomorrow early morning hours are a mistake while transferring data from one system to the next. Going back to the root data, it shows gusts up to 25kn. I have therefore reefed the mainsail and reduced speed to get comfortably through the night. It might cost me my arrival in Funchal at daylight hours but so be it. Better slow and safe.

It was interesting to listen to the GGR community on Marine Radio, channel CH 6-3. Not sure, who it was but will listen in tomorrow evening as well to explore more. They are somewhere on the way to Rubicon/Lanzarote for a photo stop but I will probably mis them anyway.

Well, time for me to get some dinner prepared. Time is flying.

Fair winds..

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