Estepona to Mallorca

Pearl of Persia
Andrew Lock
Mon 24 Sep 2012 13:30
Back to the heat after a couple of weeks in England. We had left the boat in
Estepona on the Costa Del Sol and found her in good health when we got back
although she needed a good scrub following the forest fires near Malaga
which had left a thin layer of ash all over the boat.
A straight 4 day run to Mallorca for the Oyster Regatta and a few days of
racing and socialising, so we left Estepona in the afternoon having
provisioned for the crossing. It started off well with decent winds which
meant we sailed for a few hours but gradually it died and we ended up having
a long passage under engine, and three night watches. Passed close to the
southern tip of Isla Formentera, just off Ibiza, at 2 in the morning, with
Formentera lighthouse guiding us from 25 miles away. Lights have a
characteristic flashing sequence to help identify them. Formentera flashes
once every 5 seconds, the light at Cap Berberia just to the west, flashes
twice every 15 seconds. Count the sequence and then down to the chart to
find which light.
Really tired arriving at 8 in the morning and decided to find an anchorage
on the west coast, where we rested slept and generally recovered, but by 2
in the morning the swell began to roll in, and we rolled and rolled until at
first light Sussanne demanded I do something about it. Not sure what, so we
upped anchor with a plan to go to Andraitx but what met us as we left the
protection of the bay was wild, screaming winds making progress almost
impossible. The heaviest seas since leaving England and typical of the Med
when windy. No long ocean swell here, just lumpy uncomfortable chop. We
turned and ran back towards Palma with the boat bucking and rolling. Almost
layed over on the side with the mast close to the sea as the waves seemed to
come from every direction and finally by early afternoon relative calm as we
tied up to the very fancy 'Real Club Nautico de Palma'