Santa Cruz, Tenerife 28:28.034N 016:14.662W

Bill and Judy Stellin
Sat 27 Oct 2007 18:09
Our stay in Lanzarote was extended a little because our good friends Mats and Ulla
on Hokus Pokus II came into the port and an important regatta was also beginning at the
We met Mats and Ulla (Swedish) in Kemer Turkey and sailed the EMYR together.
Later we visited them in their home in Gothenburg.
The regatta was of Trans Pac 52's, GP 40's, Swan 45's and a large fleet of Beneteau
First 40's. 
         King Juan Carlos  Trans Pac 52
This marina is owned by a man named Senor Don Calero.("Don" is a title)  The regatta is his idea
and he does it first class.  Every boats transportation cost to the Canaries is paid for by him.  Each crew is given
a hotel room, a car to share and the boats skipper is given 600euro to help with other
expenses.  There were about 75 boats involved so you can see how much this must have
cost him.  His buddies include, Juan Carlos the king of Spain, and the king of Norway, both of
whom had their TP 52's racing here.  Somehow he has convinced the Swedish Volvo Ocean
racing team Ericson to base one of their two home bases in his marina.
The Volvo Ocean Round the World race will begin in 2008 through part of 2009 so there will be over 50 people working
and training here for almost two years.
 Each night for a week the Marina put on a fabulous party  for everyone
 including a delicious buffet of typical Canarian food and all the beer and wine we could consume.
There was always a live band to accompany the festivities.  On the last night the place was turned into
a gigantic disco with fireworks, and an open bar for at least 1000 people.  This shindig started
midnight and continued till 5 AM.  Our berthing cost here was about 24 euros per night.  Since we ate
and drank at least 25 euros each, he lost money on us too.
  I took this picture from a balcony and was quick to rejoin the fun.
The day after, we departed for Santa Cruz, Tenerife, where we are now.  It was a passage of
one hundred forty one miles that included sailing, motor sailing, motoring, every combination we could think of. 
About one half was pure sailing.  For practice, we put up the spinnaker at midnight to get used
to rigging, hoisting and fly it in the dark.  After an hour or so we doused it because the wind was very light
and there was a fearsome swell that had the boat rocking from side to side.  We didn't want to risk a bad wrap. 
We arrived at dawn and then slept for a few hours.
Normally we get pretty good sleep while on passages, but this one involved so much sail
handling and trimming, to say nothing of constantly watching for traffic, both of us were awake most of the night.
The Canary Island are all the result of volcanic eruptions and thus have a similar look. Tenerife
is dominated by Pico del Teide at 12,195 feet, the highest point in the archipelago and indeed all
of Spain.  We rented a car and drove to the peak located in the middle of a national park.
The drive of about 50 miles to get there was one of the most spectacular we've seen in the long time.
The road straddles the spine of the mountains leading to El Teide and one minute you are
looking at the sea on the west and around a bend, the view is of the sea to the east. 
A good bit of the time we were well above the clouds and looked down on their tops.
We are at about 6000 feet here, with another 5000 feet up to go. The road is good
and goes through really beautiful pine forests, with ferns at their base.  This is semi-
tropical so it is almost a rain forest atmosphere until you reach 6-7 thousand feet.
The peak is about 600 feet above us and we would have needed better clothing and shoes
plus a permit to ascend to the rim.  Judy is about freezing to death here, with wind at
25-35 MPH and temps in the 40's At the boat the temp. was in the 80's.
Grand Canary Island is 40 miles in the distance.  This view is from the top of a cable car which brought
us to a foot path just below the peak of the mountain that Judy is on in the previous picture. 
The crater in this picture is the result of the original cataclysmic explosion which created the entire island.
 It is over a mile to the other side. 
At this point we were above 11,500 ft. and the air was a little thin. Some people were having
difficulty and getting dizzy. Many had no idea of the weather at the top of a mountain and were
dressed in only tank tops and shorts with flip flops for footwear.  They were clearly suffering.
The Canary Islands attract over 10 million visitors each year, and with extordinary natural beauty
 like we've seen, one can understand why.