Madeira to La Graciosa

Brian Bonniwell and Claudine
Mon 16 Nov 2015 16:38

29:15.00N 13:30.00W

We departed Madeira heading for Gracosia, a Canarian island on the north end of Lanzarote. Well, what a sail, although the 15 knot wind was almost 'on the nose' we trimmed the sails and set the autopilot to steer just off the wind.  Without any more trimming, we sailed two days and two nights at 7-8 knots and after 270 miles and a slightly meandering course due to wind shifts,  arrived before dawn within 3 miles of our intended anchorage.  We reduced sail to slow down so that we would enter Graciosa's Baya Francesca as dawn broke.  The customary egg and bacon 'arrival breakfast, served up by Claudine, was enjoyed by all. 
 B and C walked to the small harbour town.  It would almost make a set for a "western" - deserted dirt roads and simple white houses set on a barren plain beneath even more barren small volcano like mountains.  Brian says it was much more developed than when he visited 10 years ago.  
As we set off for the town the boys set too on the beach, arranging their kites hoping to enjoy some kite boarding  in the promising breeze.  From a short distance, we observed one of the few beach occupants approach Ben, apparently to warn him that the wind was very gusty.  What particularly caught our eye, or at least Brian's, was that the beach occupant was an attractive young girl, and what's more - topless!!  All the way to the town, Brian kept on about taking up kite boarding!  Despite that distraction the boys had some really great kite boarding, particularly for most of the next day, when in perfect conditions, they 'boarded' the wide passage between Gracosia and Lanzarote.

Our stay in Gracosia had to be cut short on 18th Nov, when we headed for Marina Lanzarote, where as previously mentioned, we were to leave the boat in a safe haven, under the command of Sam, whilst Claudine, Ben and Brian return to the UK to attend Ben's graduation in Bristol and for Brian to complete some outstanding business and source some more spares! 

More on Lanzarote, hopefully in the next blog, but first impressions look good.

Brian, Claudine, Ben and Sam