Steve & Carol
Mon 18 May 2020 11:30
|We have been here a few days so here are a few pictures from our crossing first!
Like our last west to east crossing we encountered many thousands of Portuguese man o war sailing slowly across the ocean, they are surprisingly difficult to get a good picture of due to the boats motion and I did spend many an hour trying! these are some of my best efforts!
We also had some encounters with dolphins although for the first 2 weeks we didn’t see any!
and we saw a couple of whales, both initially surfaced very near the boat but soon dived again - I did manage to catch one blowing off when it next surfaced.
Soon after our arrival we were greeted by two lads on the Peters sports Cafe rib who are providing a service to boats offering to do shopping, get gas etc for boats, we got their what’s app details etc and later arranged a shopping list for them to get - the shop was fairly successful and we got most things we needed.
We also had a visit from the port police who took our details and gave us a list of service contacts should we need any repairs etc. As the Azores are not allowing any cruisers ashore we aren’t able to check in with customs and immigration here, officially we are meant to leave within 48 hours of the Police visit however they said that if weather dictated we stay, we would be able to. It is therefore a weather watching exercise to see when we can leave again. Quite a few boats have left they mainly seem to be heading towards the Algarve, Mediterranean or Canaries not going our way, our friend Denis has also arrived from Antigua so we are at least able to have a nice long VHF chat with him - last time we saw him was in La Gomera in 2017.
The weather forecasts seem to be changeable with the low pressure systems which are going by either tracking north or coming south towards or over our planned route! Yesterdays weather forecast looked promising and so we planned to leave today, we were able to get fuel, dispose of our rubbish and topped up with fresh water (just because we could). While on the dock I did some hand laundry and we were able to say hello to Denis who was also getting fuel and water, we managed to wangle staying the night on the pontoon as long as we left at first light so this morning after looking at the weather we emailed the marina to explain why we were not leaving and have returned to our anchor spot to wait out the weather!
We haven’t seen the boat we had seen on AIS Day 2 of our crossing arrive and on Marine traffic it was back in Georgetown on 08/05/2020 so I googled their blog and was shocked to read that they were dismasted not long after or around the time we lost contact with them, apparently it was calm and they were sailing in 12 knots when it happened - they had previously been sailing hard as we saw them doing 7-8 knots which for a Bavaria 36 we thought was pushing it a bit! Thankfully they managed to jury rig a sail and head safety back to Georgetown - though it was terribly unfortunate for them they were so lucky it didn’t happen further into their passage when they may have had a more difficult time getting to safety! I have stolen a few pictures from their blog!
The culprit piece of rigging!
We will no doubt do another blog update again before we leave here but till then here are a couple of pictures of Pico and the anchorage.