Ria de Ares

Magnetic Attraction
Roger and Margaret Pratt
Fri 9 Aug 2013 13:03

8 August 2013 – Ria de Ares



I’m writing this in the cockpit, at anchor in lovely Ares.  Its warm and sunny! I cooked a stuffed marrow for supper, and it was warm enough to eat in the cockpit.  The anchorage is pretty full -3 French, 3 Brits and a solitary Spaniard, holding onto his cred by hoisting an anchor ball.  Unprecedented!

The passage from Falmouth to N Spain was 449 miles and took just over 75 hours.  To maintain speed the motor came on to augment the sails as needed – but I would say that we sailed without engine a good 33% of the way.  But crossing Biscay boring is good!  The Scopoderm patch held up well and despite a very rolly swell through neither of us has felt seasick – although Roger has felt very tired all day today Thursday.

Leaving Falmouth was more fraught than either of us had intended.  Once we knew that Richard and Wendy were back from Greece we invited them to stay on Sunday evening.  Then, on Saturday morning we heard news that Becky and Ike on Rhythm, (whom we had waved off from Warsash on their world cruise in 2006) had arrived back - into Falmouth!  We had been invited to Hendrik and Signe for drinks on Saturday and had a riotous evening which left those on the spirits feeling very quiet on Sunday.  Chris and Sandra wanted to see us for a last supper, we all had a curry at the Balti House in Falmouth on Sunday evening (highly recommended!.)  We had a very sad farewell with Richard and Wendy on Monday before hearing all from Ike and Becky.  Chris then turned up to make sure we did leave – threatening to cut the lines if necessary!  So it turned out to be a solid farewell party for 48 hours before we eventually left at c 4pm on Monday.  It had been pouring with rain all day, and on that note good to get away from blighty!

The passage down was straightforward – keeping everything to the east!  So the course took us outside: Ushant and its Traffic Separation Scheme; the isles de Sein, and then over the continental shelf down to Spain.  The only hairy moment was when a Spanish fishing boat charged at us in the early hours of Wednesday morning, missing us by yards.  Otherwise the AIS has worked well.  The continental shelf reappeared this morning at 11-ish, when in the space of 6 miles the waters shoaled from 4900m to 790m.  There was nary a ripple to mark the change.

We plan to move on to La Coruna, maybe tomorrow or Saturday.  But with the Biscay hurdle over, there time for some R&R!