El Hierro

Phil Pascoe
Mon 24 Nov 2008 14:44

27:47.0N 17:54.2

Puerto de la Estaca, El Hierro (Canaries)

As ElHierro was effectively 'on or way', we decided to call in and possibly get a restful night, and maybe some more fresh food. After a slow start in the lee if the island, we made good time after leaving La Gomera and arrived at our landfall at Puerto de la Estaca just before dusk at 18.30h. The pilot books and guides suggested that a marina would be in place by now as it was 'well underway' in 2005. However, there was no sign of it. We were offered a wall to tie against - a nice new concrete wall admittedly but with an overhang just at the level of the guardrails so the fenders were of little use. We tried and adjusted about six lines but eventually after buying some bread from the only bar/restaurant we gave up and went outside the inner harbour to anchor. Not very restful night for Phil (blamed it on the wrong amount of alcohol and caffeine and the anchor alarm going off. Pete and Tony slept fairly well. I just hope we don't regret losing 12 hours for a fairly fruitless stop.

Early start, fitted the other genoa for a twin-headsail rig, upped the anchor and away we went. Heading around the North of the Island at first - frustrating to be going North at this stage, but we felt this would avoid the light winds in the lee. We could still see land behind us well into the afternoon, but only Ocean ahead. We achieved 1% of the mileage by lunchtime, only about 2570 to go.

Now heading for the magical 25North 25West where we should get an idea where the trade winds are.

Great to be really on our way at last - more soon.......