Gran Canaria

Mariposa Blog
Robert Newman
Sun 7 Nov 2010 17:35
Well we are here (there) Rob and I sailed across last night from the bright lights of Tenerfie to those of Gran Canaria.

After a few jobs and watching England's spirited but ultimately unsuccessful match against the All Black we got going and had a cracking night sail - albeit it beating to windward. For those unfamiliar the winds, and therefore seas, really funnel between the islands...on top of this the steep volcanic islands heat up through the day and the resulting sea breezes combine to give some terrific that's why we travelled at night. Even so we had winds up to 25 knots and it was at times a tad uncomfortable. For me sleep was elusive in the forward bunk cabin - not only could I hear the waves slapping and sluicing along the side I could actually feel the yacht flexing as we charged through the waves!

Early next morning we get checked out buy (we think) the same Spanish customs boat that boarded us so successfully (resulting in a flogging damaged genoa) on our arrival in Tenerife several weeks ago. We flashed them the ARC flag and fortunately they seemed satisfied and did not felt the need to come aboard again!

On arrival in Las Palmas we reversed into our parking space only to get a rope (from a neighbouring yacht) round the prop...queue Captain Jacques Newman who donned his scuba gear (2nd time this trip!) to dive under the boat in the surprisingly cold murky harbour and saw through multiple strands that had rapidly and potentially (mechanically) disastrously wedged themselves into the propeller shaft. A nice introduction to our neighbours who turn out to be an entertaining if not efficient (ropes!!) Swiss couple Anne-Marie and Bernard.

Las Palmas is full of yachts here for the ARC all flying their rally flags and "dressed all over" an old navy term (?) meaning that a vessel has her signal flags run up the backstay to myth top of the mast and down the forestay to the foredeck.

We are expecting more crew (Spiller and Frosty - now confirmed) and family (Nicole, Arthur, Roger, Cynthia, Ken and Gill ) to join us for what is now an two week preparation (party) event afore the big push across the pond to St Lucia....