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Date: 04 Jan 2013 13:59:15
Title: Position 36:40N 002:43W

Log start 1610
Log now 1762
Distance 152nm

Hi All,

Well the pormised NE 4-5 became NNE 6 gusting 7 so with reduced sail and averagin 6.5 to 7 knots, we enjoyed a cold, sometimes clear and sometimes cloudy, blustery and cold night as our first at sea on this trip. We rounded Cabo de Gata just after 0080 and while the sun was still hiding behind a big black cloud, in the company of several merchant vessels. Not too much sleep for us which is inevitable under the circumstances. The night was quite roly poly and the boat taught us she has lots of creaks and groans we have yet to become accustomed to. Overall she behaved well but she does not like being dead downwind at all.

A bright morning eventually saw us in smooth water south of Almeria but with a decreasing wind which backed northerly then veered easterly but nice winter sunshine and some layers came off as we warmed up. Adrian still practicing as skipper until we get to Almerimar, in another couple of hours. Then he will be "off duty" as we continue direct towards Gibraltar.

Many thanks for Iridium SMS messages especially Jan and Kyrah and thanks also to Matteo for your email with good wishes.

Discovered we cannot turn off the VHF inside speaker which is a real nuisance at night for Mike mainly who sleeps in the saloon. We can turn the radio off but then have no listening watch without using the hand held. In this respect, I much prefer the Northstar VHF fitted to Jemima Nicholas!

The new electronics I fitted are working fine as we learn our way through the complex menus and options. Having the oriignal chart table GPS at the helm as a repeater is proving usefuly already however.

The saloon table has been covered in protective material and stored very carefully out of harms way! (message for Gail).

Mike has just scrubbed the decks and rigged a mainsail preventer, which is doubly essential to stop the boom rattling the stainless frame to which the mainsheet traveller is fitted.

All in all, a very satisfactory first night at sea and we hope, an indicator of success to come.

More will follow and thanks for following us.

Best regards

The Mariposa Blanca Team.

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