Arrived Las Palmas, 26/06/2013, 28.07.65N 15.25.49W

David Batten
Wed 26 Jun 2013 20:19
Well, after 2 lovely sunny, peaceful days in Pasito Blanco, it was back to usual conditions as soon as we were off the aeropuerto.

With Jesus, Dan and Claire on board, we left Pasito Blanco just after 8.00am in bright sunshine, 5 to 10 knots of wind from astern, full sails and some engine assist. The crew were just settling down to some serious plane spotting when David said "time to put in a couple of reefs, look at the water ahead". Sure enough, white horses and wind on the nose heralded a pretty unpleasant beat into 25 to 30 knots of wind and a rough sea all the way from 27.52.20N 15.17.60W to Las Palmas. Claire had a really foul time of it, but the rest of the crew were amazingly resilient and remained stoically cheerful to the end and Jesus was an excellent guide, pointing out all the structures of interest as we passed.

We were getting somewhat worried by Claire's condition, so applied motor assist in order to make the course past Pta de Gando and once past Pta Melenara, the sea did start to subside as we beat into the bay. Using the old oil rig lying south of Las Palmas and then the anchored ships as marks, we tacked into the harbour and eventually tied up at about 16.15. David, Jesus and Dan did a fantastic job controlling the revs, fending and jumping onto to the pontoon to secure the warps on our downwind, backward approach and we arrived without mishap, no thanks to the young marina official who appeared minutes later.

There is no doubt that sailing in the Canaries presents a varied and at times, exciting challenge that we would found have difficult enough in Avocet, our previous and very familiar boat. However, it is an excellent testing ground for the transatlantic and we are learning to manage Alcedo and to trust in her more and more.

Tomorrow, we are looking forward to spending more time with Dan's lovely family and doing some investigation for organising the lay up in August, with the help of Jesus.


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