18th May 2011
We left Angra dos Reis and sailed across to Ilha Grande, en route we met Yacht Iza and we all stopped at Ilha Botinas for a snorkel. They were on the way to drop their guests in Angra for their flight back to SA. Leaving Botinas we anchored off of Abraao just before sunset, which arrived with a rain shower. We settled in for the night thinking we would be staying a couple of days waiting for the wind to turn North so we could set sail. When we woke the next morning it had already turned and we hastily packed up and set off.
Just over half way to Rio, André noticed the helm seat was broken through at the base. The welded seam was completely cracked; one big roll with someone on it and it would have broken off. So we changed our destination to Rio. We phoned one of the Brazilian friends we had met in Angra and he organised for us to take it to a welder at the Rio Yacht club.
As we sailed a Brown Booby decided he had had enough of flying and perched on our pulpit on the front of the boat. I was able to move to within about 30 cm of him taking photos and having a long conversation. It was awesome to see him so close up. They are so pretty, they have a white beak and face, a brown neck, a white tummy and brown tail, then their wings are white and brown edged. He stayed there for a good 30 mins.
We were planning to anchor at Iate Clube Rio de Janeiro but as we sailed in we saw that Moonwalker, the cat with Russel, Karin and little Briza were anchored at Urca so we joined them.
The next day the helm seat was repaired and another cruiser anchored at Urca suggested we might find other items we needed for the boat at Niteroi. So we motored across the bay and found Iate Clube Naval Charitas; a beautiful club run by Naval Officers. The whole setting and facilities are awesome and it’s a 20 min ferry ride to Rio or a 20 bus ride to Niteroi. I suggest the Cape to Rio organisers consider it as a destination instead of ICRJ. They have a strong racing membership and sailing school. I was taken back in time when the fleet of Optimists went out with their instructor for a lesson.
That evening Yacht Iza arrived from Ilha Grande and anchored near us. Early the next morning they left en route Carbo Frio. We had thought we would have to stay longer for a weather window as we were planning to head for Buzios, but on seeing the gap we up anchored and followed Iza out of the bay.
The weather wasn’t ideal we had a head wind all the way and the seas were lumpy and bumpy. The front that had been chasing us up the coast finally caught up with us at about 18h00 and the wind increased and the swell heightened. With even darker clouds still chasing us we ducked through the cutting between the mainland and island and into the relative protection of Carbo Frio Island. By this time Iza was about two hours behind us and we watched and waited willing them to beat the huge front chasing them. The seas were getting rougher and rougher and they motored through the cutting as the weather caught them. With them safely inside it was amazing watching the huge swell and waves breaking through the cutting. We all settled and spent a very bumpy night taking turns at anchor watch. With big seas surrounding our haven we moved the boats away from the exposure of the cutting the next morning to a calmer anchorage off of Carbo Frio beach.
Having checked the weather we discovered if we didn’t take the small gap the next day and run for Buzios we would be stuck in Carbo Frio for a week or more. There is nothing at Carbo Frio, well nothing close by so early the next morning we set off. The swell was big 3 to 4 meters, you will see in the photos I attach Iza, less than 100 meters away kept disappearing behind the swell. Other than the swell there were no problems and we were able to motor sail to Buzios.
We are anchored here at Praia do Canto, a very bumpy anchorage. We have been spoilt by Andra and Parati where the boat lies perfectly still most of the time. Here we bump and roll constantly with the chop and the swell. It can be irritating at night; like sleeping on a trampoline someone is jumping on. J
Buzios used to be a peaceful little fishing village, Brigitte Bardot used to often stay here in the 1960’s, unintentionally transforming the small fishing village into one of the most high profile and popular tourist resorts in Brazil. There are various memories to Bardot scattered around the town including a Bronze figurine sitting on her suitcase watching the bay. André was delighted to sit on her lap and he even sneaked a feel! ;)
The town has maintained its natural charm, the cobbled streets are well kept and there is art everywhere in the form of bronze statues, fountains, mosaics, small squares etc.
I am glad we missed the summer season as the population is said to grow 10 fold in season. We plan to go over to the town tonight as we feel the boats are safe here and we can finally experience a bit of “after dark” Brazil.
Approaching Ilha Botinas
The Brown Booby – difficult to balance on the wire with the boat bouncing.
What’s that you said?
Look how close I was!
Iate Clube Naval Charitas.
This brought back memories of my Oppie days!
I tried to catch the huge spray through the tramp but was always to late. This was a small one.
Carbo Frio Island on right and mainland left. The cut we ducked through!
Yacht Iza: Now you see them….
Now you don’t!
André on Brigitte Bardot’s lap!
Andre copped a feel! J
Statues in the sea!
We walked Buzios flat. One of the beaches.
I am enthralled with the color of the sand – yes its pink!
The view from the “Rich and Famous” area!
There are these “shrines” all over Brazil! This one in the corner of a beach!
Iza at sunset!