Arriving in whales

Lars Alfredson
Wed 2 Nov 2011 14:08

28102011 Leaving Mar del Plata Pix


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                                Last supper                                                                                With newfound friends


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                            Through the gate




29102011 Sail to Peurto Madryn





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                                                                                                                                       Croc boys


02112011 At Anchor Peurto Pyramide


We finally dropped anchor at 0630 after a very tedious night. Having achieved speeds of upto 16.2 kts on the downwind leg it now time to turn into

the entrance to Golfe Neuvo and beat our way against 35kt winds.


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                          Crossing the line


Now having gone from fully reefed to no sail we are barely making 3kts under engine and battling our way through the legions of waves that march

down on us. By the time we get to the bay of Puerto Pyramide its now too dark to see conditions in there so we have no choice but to continue motoring until daybreak



Disaster computer just dumped the rest of the blog without saving it !!!!


Come dawn we anchored off the beach and off the small tourist settlement on a long shallow sandy bottom.

We watch one of the whale watching boats come in noting their technique for dealing with the lack of a landing stage by running onto a trailer

and being pulled up onto beach where, aircraft type steps are wheeled up to the hull. Then the punters all with their regulation lifejackets descend ashore, with dry feet.


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As the tour boats head out we are surrounded by whales. We instantanly turn into budding David Attenboroughs and snap away a hundred to the dozen ,

but our subjects don’t want to play and its quick flash of snout, puff of water from their blow hole and their gone.


We retire to our bunks worn out from a night of bouncing about our elated snapping.

In the afternoon we have damage assessment. The spinnaker pole has ripped its fitting from the mast and the recently repaired batten has broken again.


Its time for a run ashore, the outboard starts first time, then dies, never to start again despite our best efforts. Here we stand, all dressed up and nowhere to go !

fortunately happy hour arrives and we settle down to night aboard. Suddenly were inundated by whale, but as the light is fading our photographic results are disappointing.


Out with the Mexican Train to continue our game and thought I win all but one gate, on aggregate I loose !! there’s no justice.


The following morning the sun is shining and the wind has dropped. Though during the night there was a violent thunderstorm and Lars who witnessed its 50kt winds

said that it put the boat on its beam ends. Thomas and I didn’t hear a thing or in my case more miraculously fall out of my bunk, guess he didn’t have a much wine as we did.


In the morning we go off whale watching, and there are plenty to see but they still don’t want to leap about like you see in the documentaries.

We see our first penguin and identify it as a “Charmain Bibby” Lars manages to snap it before it dives out of sight.


As we head across the bay to Puerto Madryn some 35nm we come across another pair of whales but after a couple of pix they dive deep and we don’t see them again.


Lunch, Paella is served, as we sit in our shorts taking the rays, the temperature now in the 20’s. Our destination shows up in the distance,

a largish town of some 60,000 people with a collection of sky scrappers poking up from a relatively flat country side with a small plateau behind the town.

The town was founded by Welsh settlers in 1865 and is now a busy beach resort in the summer. It is also the base for whale watching, diving, and trekking.


We arrive to the north of a long commercial jetty are directed to moorings off the yacht club and as we’re some 500metres offshore

we need to resolve the motor problem soon or it could be a long row in.


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                                     Puerto Madryn anchordram                                              Reception commitee


Weighing up the problem I decide to have another go a the engine. Five or six hefty yanks of the start cord and she fires !!!

The dinghy is lowered and the cord pulled again and bruuum the engine fires first pull. Lars and Peter are sent off on trial run and head over to the jetty to get rid of our rubbish.


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                                  The Jetty                                                                             The Yacht club


On their return we learn of the problem they had try to get up the steps which were blocked by and angry male sealion and three of his harem leaving them

no choice but to climb up the outside of the handrail to pass them.


Peter has made contact through the internet with a local young lady, a marine biologist who we arrange to meet at the yacht club, so its all aboard the jolly boat

as we head for shoreleave in a somewhat overloaded ark on dodgy seas.


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                                  Get off my steps                                                                           Maria


Maria Angela is a very nice girl who seems unphased by the shaggy unkempt and a little damp charges she has aquired and shoehorns

us into her little car for a tour of the town and a local bar.


We pass the monolyth marking the spot where the Welsh first landed at the far end of town before we arrive at her favourite bar/restaurant serving

and extensive range of local beers. The steaks were excellent and a jolly time was had by all.


Back to the yacht club and now for some fun as we have to carry the dinghy across the beach to the water and all pile aboard.

Fortunately the wind has died but there is still a choppy sea, but we make it back unscathed apart from our crocks being full of sand which is duly deposited on the transom.


Bob the blog.