Finally it’s quiet. We are sailing and at long last we got some, but not much, wind. We are sailing along at 4-5 knots and nothing much is happening. Sky is overcast and sea full of Saragosso seaweed ( Bösiteten är hög) so we can’t make electricity from our water generator. This means that we still have to run the engine to top up the batteries.
We are fanatasizing about all the great meals we will have when in Horta. We are also beginning to plan the next passage. Shall we go to the UK or France? Do we need a visa for the UK? Do we need to head for an official Port of Entry? Perhaps easier to skip Brittain and leave the Islanders to themselves, heard the natives can be quite hostile.. (smile)
We will see. We do have some geat friends that we would like to visit.
All good on board!
Position N 29*49 W 50*44
We have now been on our way for almost a week. We are totaly becalmed. No wind what so ever. Ocean is like a mirror and we have been motoring for many days. Forecast says no wind for the next 5-7 days. Almost a bit scary.
Yesterday we saw the famous Green Flash. This is a fenomina where exactly when the sun drops below the horizon you get a Green Flash. Conditions need to be perfect and it is very rare. We have seen it twice in the last four years. Spectacular. Evil tongues claim that it is easier to see after several Rum Punsch drinks but we were sober as always……
Today we stopped the engine and went for a swim. Ocean depth is 6000 m. Weird.
This morning Lisa saw a whale diving right next to the boat. Otherwise there is nothing out here. Looking like “ A hundred days of solitude” I don’t think we have ever been as lonely, in a good sense, as now.
So all is good on board and we hope to get some wind soon.
We had a discussion onboard about how to decide how many days we been at sea, I think that the first day, if we leave in the morning, should count as day 1, but… we have not sailed a full day (24h) until next day. What is the right way? If we count “my way” we been sailing one more “day” than we actually have. Hmmm….
We have a nice smooth sail with very light winds. We sail wing-wing app 4.5-5 knots over ground, 9 knots of wind. At night we see lightning all around us. Today we had a rain shower that lasted an hour, not like the northern european ones that last 6- 8 months…. All good onboard despite that we found some bugs that we started a war with! Too much saragasso-kelp in the water for fishing.
It’s with mixed feelings we are now leaving the Carribbean. We have had a great time, the weather is just perfect and water temperature too!
Our weather forecast tells us that we ”should” have good winds the first two days, after that we’ll see. It’s 2200nm to the Azores if we can hold a straight line?! As usual I will update the blog every now and then during the passage.
We really enjoy Antigua. It’s a small Island and we have sailed around it several times with lots of stops. Our favourite stop is Great Bird Island at the northeast corner. There we get a good and safe anchoring, nice snorkeling and beautiful beaches. We even saw some rays when kayaking! The people here are fantastic, we feel very welcomed and we will miss it when leaving. There is not much hiking on the Island, all activities are concentrated around the sea.
While sailing along the coast we see all these hotel complexes that now are empty! But those that are open their guests will not be missing anything! On the beach outside the hotel you will find all sorts of playtoys like airfilled plastic playgrounds floating in the water, SUPs, bicycleSUP, kayaks, kites, bananas (big thing you sit on and looks like a banana which they tow behind a motorboat, looks very fun) etc, etc
We sailed to Barbuda and took a long walk at both Princess Dianas beach and 11 mile beach. These are the most beautiful beaches we seen with soft pink sand and they streches for several km. We were almost the only ones there!
Our kids managed to come and visit us! Great joy and a lot of Mahjong and UNO. We haven’t seen each other for 1,5 years so it was great to have them here. It was a lot of testing and regulations before they could come, and they were not allowed to leave the boat while here (quarantine 14 days). Eventually all the pcr-tests and antigen-test, both ways, costed as much as the flight ticket!
We are now slowly preparing ourselves and the boat for our next crossing to the Azores. We are looking at weather forecasts every day and it seems like a good window at the middle/end of next week. But as always we only have a few days forecast when leaving, so we always cross our fingers and toes and wish for the best. The crossing is about 2000nm northeast and it will take about 3 weeks to get there.
Antigua is a loveley place. Blue sky, blue waters and soft beaches! We were welcomed with open arms and clear-in process was very easy. We called marina on vhf, and they directed us to an anchorage. Every morning port health take a tour in the anchorage to check for new boats with the yellow Q-flag hoisted. They visit you and leave some papers for you to fill in, after 2h they come back, take the papers and let one person go ashore to visit customs and immigration, voilá! You are in! We didn’t need to quarantine or do a pcr-test, probably because we been at sea for 40 days.
Nelsons dockyard, which is the closest place to go ashore and tie our dinghy, is a deserted place. You only see workers doing some restauration to the old buildings and a few tourist shops, but almost no people or tourists. Antigua is open for business but with restrictions and limitations. There is a curfew from 18.00, only takeaway at restaurants and no bars are open. Always use facemask and sanitize all the time. Lucky for us, the beaches are open!
Since we arrived here we have not been doing much just relaxing and enjoying the scenery. It’s wonderful to swim around the boat. We will spend 2 months cruising around Antigua and Barbuda, and hopefully our kids will be able to visit us during this time. When we read about all restrictions around corona it seems very complicated though.
February 21, 22 and 23, 2021 /Our last days of sailing have been perfect. We made good speed and the sea was behind us. Tomorrow we will reach Antigua after 5542 nm and 41 days at sea, feels great!
Position: N16*04 W60*29