The Canaries

The passage from Portugal to the Canaries was one of the best sailing of my life. Not only because it was the most pleasant smooth, and relaxing but also our plan worked very well we had to pass 4 different weather systems, and it went absolutely well. It is quite incredible that forecasts nowadays are rather accurate even for a week in advance.
After the first days we grew our sea legs, and it seemed absolutely normal to be at sea and we did all our tasks as we would have been at the harbour. The whole passage took us 6 days which is a days shorter than what we expected. The sky was always blue the sea flat and the sails filled nicely all the way.20
Our fishing improved greatly since we left Portugal which is maybe a straight result of our discussion with the fishing shop lady at Sines. Its quite interesting, I managed to catch quite a lot of fish in the English Channel, but since I entered the Biscay basically I did not catched a single fish. Once we a hooked a nice bonito with Dusan but it want away in the last minute.  What we learned from the shop owner lady is, and it is rather dead effective, to put a weight, around 200g for our 4-5 knot of speed at the end of the main line, and after that at least 3 but rather 5 meter of line and than the lure. With this method, we cought at least one fish every day beating everyone from the sailing branch.30
Originally we planned to arrive to Las Palmas, and wanted to spend the least amount of days as the Canaries was not really appealing for any of us, but it is a necessary stop before the crossing, this is the place where you can do all the maintain works and shopping you wish to do before the big jump.40
In the last minute, we changed our mind, and turned towards Graciosa, as it seemed a way more happy and interesting destination compared to the big and tourist infested city.
Have to say it was a good decision, tiny little island with only one village, no roads, instead sea-sand on the streets. Everyone is relaxed, the beaches are nice. We spent around a week here walking around the mini-island chatting with the locals and catching-up with our sleeping schedule.50
From here we turned our wheel towards Las Palmas. Although it was only a two day passage it was really tiring and challenging as the sea was rough to the level that Susana managed to develop some sea-sickness she never had before.60
Las Palmas as expected is a rather noisy and dirty city with not much interesting things for us. We finished our refurbishment in a week, had to change the solars as the old ones already died, also had some minor things to repair including our propshaft sealing, as it was leaking badly to the level that the bilge filled up with water during the passage from Portugal. By the time I realised it there where nice waves rolling inside the boat which caused some excitement as we where still 24 hours sailing away.70
The best part in our stay here was the we meet a nice branch of happy and friendly Hungarians, some living here, others has a boat here to refurbish and two of them where hitchhikers, looking for a boat to cross the atlantic. We also bumped into two friendly Portugese boat, sailing next to each other, waiting for each other all the time (which is a strange concept for me, I would not do it)Susana managed to convince them to pick one Hungarian each for the journey to Cape Verde.80
As our time arrived to sail to the south, the weather deteriorated and the winds turned southerly and stayed that way for 2,5 weeks, which is unheard of. After a few days we where already sick of this place so decided to sail out anyway, but the conditions where such that we had to give up and stop 10miles south at the fishing harbour of Telde. Here, there are no places for sailboats, it is a working harbour, so we stopped at the governmental pontoon, which only has access to land on high tides 🙂 and we still had to jump the fence every time. After a few days everyone started to complain, that we are not supposed to be here. Also the swell in the marina was so bad, that we broke several lines, one day, if Susana is not on the boat having a nap, than Psyrema would have been gone, as we broke all the lines except one, and that one was at its end also. Thanks god she was there, and acted quickly…90
Unfortunately more days we spent there more complains we had towards us, so we had to sail back to Palmas… 😦
Luckily, after a few days the wind turned back to the direction it should be and finally we dropped the lines to Cape Verde, the first destination out of the eu, the first destination I was actually really interested in.

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