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Date: 14 Jul 2014 11:26:16
Title: Meeting up with Dos Tintos

> Franco's brother Steve, sister-in-law Julie and their boat Dos Tintos have just sailed back from the Azores and arrived at Bayona, Galicia the next ría down from where we were in Sanxenxo.
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> We arranged to meet at a very nice anchorage, called Enseñada de Barra 42:15.6N 8:51.3W, just inside the Ría de Vigo for pizza on Dos Tintos Monday night. Steve said: "it's a nudist beach but don't worry".
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> Just off the coast are a number of small islands which together make up the 'Islas Atlanticas National Park' and a permit is needed to sail and anchor there. We fancied kayaking to the northern-most island, Isla Ons just 5 nautical miles away on Sunday but it was windy and overcast and the forecast for Monday was much better, so instead we sailed to our rendez-vous early and kayaked to Isla Cies, a more diverse and rugged island, on Monday, a perfect sunshine day.
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> As we kayaked round the northern headland we were careful not to disturb the birdlife (herring gulls, lesser black-backed gulls and shags plus the odd guillemots) but were surprised to see a large number of fishing boats fishing within metres of the rocky shore. It seems ironic that you cannot sail there without a permit but you can fish. The atlantic side was wild and rocky with a big swell hitting the coastline, not a place to be during a storm. We rounded the southern tip to discover a delightful beach on which we landed. Inland, the island was heaving with day trippers and campers all wandering around well made paths that take you to the lighthouse, the laguna, the highest promontory and of course, the cafés.
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> We spotted Dos Tintos anchored in the bay and shortly after Steve and Julie paddling their dinghy back to their boat in time to cross over to the mainland and prepare the pizza doe.
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> Cies, in Galician is pronouned 'sieche' and means 'dry', the vegetation is different to the mainland though surprisingly the park officers haven't eradicated the Eucalyptus trees. The seabed is protected down to the 30 m mark for its remarkable wealth in sealife.
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> Isla Cies was sacked by Sir Francis Drake "the pirate" during the rein of Elizabeth 1st and as a result the island was abandoned.
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> (photo to follow) Cies from the Cabo de Homelo (mainland)
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> We spent three very pleasant evenings with Steve and Julie before they left yesterday morning for the far end of the ría. (the pizzas were delicious!)
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> (photo to follow) Julie and Steve preparing to sail off in Dos Tintos
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> Enseñada de Barra where we are anchored is also protected, part of the European network of Natura 2000 sites, for its outstanding dune ecosystem and a small bird 'la pillar de dunas'.
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> In Britain Natura 2000 sites attract ecologists in anoraks whereas here ... certainly no anorak in sight! Maybe the word 'Natura' has been somewhat misinterpreted. In the interest of science and given that we are clearly following in the footsteps of Darwin, I have undertaken a study in anatomy. My conclusions: Humans are just like snowflakes, every single one is absolutely unique.
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> (photo to follow) The beach at Ensenada de Barra
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> We have been for our first swim this year and the water is far from hot. Once we were in, it wasn't so bad and we swam out to the buoy which marks the swimming zone. We managed a 5 km run this morning though the temperature would have been cooler had we set off earlier.
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> We have also decided to be more proactive about meeting other sailers so are rowing over to other boats to say hello. We have met Doug and Sylvia in Sugar 'n Spice and Sooki and Colin in Betsy.
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> Tomorrow we will head to the other side of the ría to Bayona for a couple of days in a marina. Hopefully our parcels have arrived and we will be able to make the repairs to our autopilot and other bits and pieces.
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> Kath

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