Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Cascais, Portugal to Cadiz, Spain

Departed Cascais, Portugal on Sunday, July 22 for a two day trip to Cadiz, Spain. From Cassias the trip south to Cabo de Sao Vicente (the sacred promontory) reminded me of everything I dislike about traveling the coasts of New Jersey and Florida. Strong winds, primarily from the North to Northwest which was fine. Very short choppy waves, confused most of the time, that made the ride a pain.  Add almost getting run down near Sines and I was having an attack of the blue meanies.  Turning the corner about 10 miles offshore I could not see the famous lighthouses but as I started heading east everything calmed down. In fact it calmed down to the point where I was bobbing along at 2.5 knots in 1 to 2 foot seas.  About 30 NM from Cadiz I realized that if I did not motor I would be coming in during the middle of the night so I cranked up the iron genny and away I went.  About 10 miles out I was casually scanning the horizon and saw my first fish net.  This was about 8 miles sooner than I had expected. Of course it was right in front of me. It took a bit of driving around before I was comfortable that I was able to recognize both ends of the nets. I am guessing that I had to avoid about 25 of them on the way in. I arrived at Cadiz (Marina Puerto America) without incident only to be told that I could only stay one night as the Tall Ships Race was coming to town. I did discover that in adding wraps to the furler I went too far and could not unfurl the last little bit of the jib.
Once again Reboot and XO are the furthest East they have been.
Dates: 22 July 2012 - 24 July 2012; 2+ days
Voyage Length: 254 NM
Average speed: 4.8 Knots
Hours motoring: 3 (1/2 hour out of Cascais, 2 1/2 hours into Cadiz)
n/a (amazing, but it was a short trip.)
I utilized the VHF to get coastal weather information. The Spanish use the DSC calling feature to alert you when they are doing a broadcast. The first time it happened I though someone was in trouble as that was the only time it had alerted before. But they do routine "all ships" calls. It sounds like the telephone is ringing. It took a minute or two to figure out what it was, so I missed the first broadcast.
When I purchased Reboot it had a 155 Genoa. When I talked to various sail makers about getting a new jib after the 155 tore in the Neuse River they all suggested a smaller jib, either a 115 or a 135. I was very hesitant to go smaller but I took the advice and went with a 135. I now realize that I sail at least 50% of the time with no main and the jib furled to 50% or 60%. If I had someone else on board I would more likely be using a single or double reefed main, but it is much easier to furl the jib when the winds build then to wrestle with putting a reef in the main. Also, the Monitor wind steering vane likes the jib when heading down wind.

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