The Mighty Biscay

Thu 5 Jun 2014 09:51
43:07.28N:09:13.00W We are now safely tucked up in an unplanned stop over in Camarinas prior to heading around Finistere to Bayona. There are four boats in here waiting for the near gale to move on. Because the rest of the fleet were well ahead of us they made it around Cape Finistere and out of the Biscay before this southerly Force 7 arrived.
This is not the first Force 7 we have had. The barometer dropped 9mbs in 5.5hrs. In the late afternoon of Tuesday from under a thunderous sky came a rapidly rising wind. We were motor sailing on track for the inshore route around Cape Finistere with the promise of a wind veering to the west so could actually sail with the engine off. So, along with Ca Canny who was thinking along the same lines, we headed west so as not to be set into the Bay and we could sail, then we could turn south as soon as the westerly came. This we both did according to plan but in winds of 28 to 30 knots.
As soon as Zoonie had her sails well reefed we made good progress, albeit while the Biscay deluged us with water and sent some mountainous waves.
Yesterday the wind eased back, the skies cleared  the dolphins played around the bow as they moved through. Zoonie was lifted thirty feet on top of the Atlantic rollers.
Head to wind we had to motorsail yet again, thinking we must stick to the route as closely as possible and not get held back further as we were north of Ushant.
The Rally organisers’ weather report told us that we should hold up in Camarinas so here we are with three other good yachts. Many kind hands helped us all in.
Essentials for this life: 24/7 music in the cockpit, keeping topped up with sleep, tasty food and drink and mutual support!
Take care
Rob & Barb