43:07.47N 09:10.70W Camarinas revisited

Sun 5 Jul 2015 16:39
After last year of using Camarinas as a safe refuge from the storm that had beset our fleet in the second half of the Biscay this time we saw a different area. Beautiful granite hills rising all around with swathes of pine and eucalyptus trees, sandy beaches and small areas of farming within stonewalled fields. We stayed a day and then thought we would give Finisterre a go. The winds around this coast can change in speed and direction and on the 1st of July the hand of fate decided that was not to be our day. The sea rose and the wind pushed us away from our destination. Big waves stopped Zoonie almost dead in her valiant progress.
“Are you sure you want to go on Rob?” “Yes.” It all started to seem rather pointless. Although the distance we needed to cover was only 20 miles all the signs were wrong. A strong head wind, increasing in velocity, a rising sea and the inevitable wear on the gear and sails. “Ok maybe not today then” Rob commented and with relief I turned her about and we headed back for shelter yet again.
Back at anchor behind the harbour wall we were with three other boats. Out of the four three of us were elderly glass fibre yachts and one was modern. The three older ones of us tended to hug our spot but the newer one slewed around from side to side. Either she was of much lighter build and or she has a lifting keel, either way I’m glad I wasn’t on her.
So we waited for the wind to move north and the barometer to rise. Our next window would be the Sunday after another blow was expected to pass through on the Friday. So we made good use of our time and spent the best part of a day walking to Cabo Villano Faro (lighthouse) a round trip of 8 miles. It is one of the few lighthouses where the keepers have to make their way along a concrete corridor up the granite hillside to go to work.
Zetor tractors with wooden trailers waited at the top of the rocks while their owners prized shellfish from the rocks to sell to local restaurants. Right beside the road to the lighthouse a massive fish farm with security cameras all around, was full of round tanks, 20’ or so across, fed with fresh sea-water and oxygen, farming the sea from different ages working side by side.
Well the promised wind arrived on the Friday and we stood anchor watch all day as the meter rose to 33 knots in the harbour. I can tell you that can get VERY BORING after a while, so at 5.00pm we gave up and went into the marina for another night. At least that way we could get to our favourite restaurant (much visited last year) for a fresh fish supper with local white wine.
The next day the wind was still stubbornly in the south so we thought we’d potter over to Muxia, on the other side of the estuary and in fact en route and drop anchor for the night, giving us an early start in the morning. We scrambled over the pink granite rocks of Punta Corpino and had a modest picnic looking at the route we would be taking the next day. A christening had just taken place in the cathedral on the headland, all very dramatic with the waves crashing over the rocks nearby as if in celebration and the smell of perfume filling the air. Muxia is less fishing village and more up market tourism than Camarinas, both are appealing in their individual ways. Back in the little town we tried some local squid and it was sooo tender.
So this morning off we set along with a few others, into virtually no wind and chose to motor-sail to Finisterre. As we rounded the headland the wind picked up and here we sit in the harbour, at anchor with it howling from the north at 20 plus knots. Best not go ashore at present, it would be a little irresponsible to leave her unattended till the wind drops and we’d probably get soaked in the dinghy. I tell you sailing can be so frustrating!