Bonjour de Camaret, Brittany!
We left Ireland Tuesday 3rd June at 10pm, towards Gijon, Asturias, north Spain. We had checked the forecast in the morning and the northerly wind which had been predicted a few days previously was no longer on the cards, instead a north-westerly for a day or so followed by a southerly for a week or more! just about the worst direction for our sail to Gijon. We decided to go for it and get as far as possible on the north-westerly before the wind changed.
... and we didn't quite make north Spain!
The wind was Force 5-6, occasionally gusting 7, so nothing horrendous but the ride was bumpy and Caramor thought she was taking part in the Grand National as she galloped over waves, to give you an example, our anchor chain which weighs 120 kg or more jumped forward in its locker.
By now the wind had gone southerly and the tack we were on was taking us straight to Camaret, near Brest and Franco remembered a very nice seafood restaurant he had been to. The choice between coffee and croissant the next day or spending the next 5 days tacking across Biscay was a no-brainer.
The exciting bit was finding ourselves in the middle of the shipping motorway off the point of Brittany with the wind pushing us into the "no-go zone" of the traffic separation zone. Our AIS (this is the fabulous electronic gizmo that tells us where other boats are and tells them (we hope) where we are) showed us in the middle with non-stop stream of ships going South on the left and North on the right. We kept a zealous look-out.
As we approached the coast we worked out that it must have been 25 years since Franco had been before and that he can't quite remember where the restaurant is. Not to worry, the croissants and kouign amann (Breton salted caramel pastry) are delicious.
Caption: The ‘Vauban’ fort at Camaret, Brittany.
While we keep a watchful eye on the forecast, we have a few boat improvements to make before our next passage.