We started the summer 2015 season with a reverse in direction of the last trip of last season. Like last year we were able to sail most of the way and the winds were stronger than forecast.
The last day of boat prep was fairly manic not helped by things going wrong – Colin created a salt water fountain whilst putting the log back through the hull which sprayed salty water all around and he found a leak in the hot water (fresh) pipage which needed repair. We said our farewells at that evening’s Stella Marina happy hour, reluctantly leaving to get an early night even though I wanted ‘just one more’!
It was already warm at 7:30 on Wednesday morning and there didn’t seem to be much wind but as the morning went on it increased up to a F4 giving us hope we could sail. Colin got the gangplank away and with some assistance from Amakuru-Dave put the dinghy onto it’s modified davits; they have been extended which makes getting the dinghy up much easier than before.
We were ready to go by 10 and with the aid of the marineros in their dinghy pushing Emerald’s bow around a tight corner, were soon clear and heading out. I had a little tear just forming as we motored out, as I looked back I saw our friends doing the farewell can-can dance so I had a good laugh instead! Thank you for your fantastic send off!
Out of the marina, decision made to just use the genny as the wind was from 150 degrees; if we were to use both main and genny with that wind angle the main would shadow the genny causing it to flog. So it’s a choice of one or the other and it’s much easier sailing with just the genny. We set off doing a sedate 4kts in a F4 but as the morning wore on we were up to 6kts and down to 1kt as the wind fluctuated. It was warm but not too hot with the breeze; I’ve read it got up to 40C in inland Sicily today. We sailed all but the last mile which we were happy with although it was quite rolly by the end of the day.
We’re now anchored with the wind an unexpected 25kts. Those pesky Mediterranean weather forecasts!
Location: Porto Palo
Position: 36 40.184’N 15 06.728’E
Distance travelled: 30nm (29nm sailed)
Weather: Dry, sunny and warm. Westerly wind F2 to a F7 gust
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