SAILING AT LAST............The BALLY ARICS 38:54:79N 01:27:54E

Zipadedoda of Dart
David H Kerr
Sat 15 Sep 2007 18:33

We departed Cartagena yesterday morning at 12 noon. The original plan was to go to Alicante yesterday, but we would have had to leave at around 0800 and the fuel berth did not open in Real Club de Regatas in Cartagena until 0900 and the truth of the matter is we needed a lay in after the dreadful passage from Gibraltar.


So we left it too late to arrive in Alicante in day light, added to which the weather forecast for the overnight period and for today, looked like we just might get to do some sailing. The new plan was hastily russelled up, and we decided to go for a 165 NM passage straight to Ibiza.


Two hours after departing we ran into favourable WIND.  Full rig up and 6.7 knots SOG, in 10 knots apparent wind, on dead flat water. Near perfect sailing conditions. I was so happy and emotional after weeks of bloody motoring I could have wept. (Actually nearly did. I had no idea just how frustrated I had become, by the lack of sailing). Especially when we were blasting out “Sailing” by Rod Stewart, and every other sailing related song on the iPOD.



After some fours hours sparkling sailing, the wind turned cyclonic and made sailing near on impossible, so we motored, had diner in the cockpit (Jennie’s best Shepherds Pie). Yumm.


There was a very moody sunset last evening, and although the old saying is “Red sky a night, Shepherds delight”, (nothing to do with the pie), we had a sense of foreboding that we were in for (yet) another challenging night in the Med’.



I elected to put Jennie on the first watch (generous to a fault), and came back on watch at midnight, to discovered the wind that had got up whilst crew was on watch , that had  been on the nose, was now on the port beam.  So much to the pleasure of the crew, I got the sails out with a fair chunk of reefing as it was 25knts apparent, gusting 30. The boat just took off and for the next  nine and half hours we just charged along through the night, with BTW speeds of 8.5 to 9 knots. Just stunning. Best sail we have had this year, and right up there with the best 10 ever.  By the time I went off watch there was a permanent grin on my face and boy did I sleep well for a couple of hours.


We opted to go to Ibiza Town, which involves passing through the Freu Grande, between Isla Formentera and Ibiza Island. I was back on watch and crew off for a very well earned rest,  after doing a fantastic job of sailing the boat. Which incidentally which had, had  the leeward  toe cap in the water most of the  time, making even going to the loo an event in itself!


On checking the boat over in the morning light I discovered a stow away. Biggest fish the boat has caught so far.  A grounded Flying Fish. Hmmm, grilled or fried Madam…….



Shortly after this the wind died on us so I motored into Ibiza Bay, with its spectacular Fort,



Sadly, well not actually, all three marinas in the Bay were full. So we are in the bay next door at anchor. Cala  Talamanca.  Bit rolly but very peaceful.


Fully sorted out by 13.15.  155nm in 25 hours. Not bad at all given most of it was SAILING, and we had a foul tide for virtually all of the trip.


Brunch was yet another gastronomic miracle from the crew. Hot Garlic Prawns and oven fresh bread, with a light refreshment to help it on its way. Then it was a much needed siesta.


Hope to “do” the chapter on Gibraltar tomorrow, and more on Cartagena. Until then…………………………..