Thursday 30 August 2018

Of Dolphins and Tuna

Many people have wished us calm seas before we left and it looks like this crossing will be especially blessed - although that might mean less sailing and more motoring. Soon after the previous post, the wind reduced to make sailing slow and rolly - so we regretfully started the engine. The wind has barely reached walking pace since, so we are steadily chugging SW.

At about 11:00pm I noticed the bow wave being illuminated by the green nav light, and wondered how the bow wave was so far back and out from the boat. Looking further, it was a dolphin stirring up phosphorescence For the next 45 minutes we were treated to an incredible display. A pod of about 9 dolphins played in the bow wave. Sometimes they darted in from about 10m to one side, the strong accelerating kicks from their tale visible as a white ball of turbulence left behind. Their shape was visible from the white light generated by the nose and fins through the water. Sometimes they would turn on their side to get a better look at us but they would probably just see the glare of the nav lights. We all gathered on the foredeck (Jo arising from her bunk out of the hatch) to watch the show - mesmerising as their trails weaved in and out by the bow wave.

Today James put two fishing lines off of the stern. Bridget thought she saw one of the lines tug but actually brought everyone's attention to the other line, which turned out to have a huge tuna! After a lot of spattering of blood in James's attempt to kill the fish, Jo successfully gutted and filleted the tuna. We will be enjoying tuna steaks tonight!

Wednesday 29 August 2018

Setting out across Biscay

Just past the Raz de Sein and heading SW towards La Coruna.
Fair wind and flat sea - good so far.

Tuesday 28 August 2018

Hello Camaret

On the channel crossing we were accompanied by dolphins a few times,
jumping and playing in the bow waves. Not caught on camera yet! We had
a good sail until night fell, when the wind died as well. From then on
it was a motor through the shipping lanes.

At dawn we approached the rocky North Brittany coast, and caught the
tide south through the Chenal du Four, past the imposing Du Four
lighthouse. We turned left after Le Conquet to break our trip here -
Cameret Sur Mer. We arrived here in time for lunch and a siesta. Crew
are just off for a shower before we (belatedly) crack open the bubbly
ear-marked for our departure from Salcombe (Thank you, Catherine!)

Goodbye Salcombe

We slipped our mooring and had a wonderful escort out of the estuary
from family and friends on the water and on the land. Much waving!

Over the bar, we were on our way. Sails hoisted, Tintin picked up on a
beam reach and we set our course for the Chenal du Four at the western
end of Brittany. As Devon cliffs receded it felt great to be actually
starting off on our adventure.

Sunday 26 August 2018

Departure timing

We plan to set off at 1:30 pm on Monday

All ready....but

The day for departure has arrived. The boat is ready, the crew is ready but the weather is definitely not. Strong winds from the south (where we're going), low clouds and rain mean we have postponed our departure by a day.

The kids are busy playing in the waves and blasting about in the laser while we fiddle around onboard.

Hopefully tomorrow will be better weather!

Friday 24 August 2018

Countdown to departure

After years of planning and months of preparation Tintin is almost ready to start her circumnavigation. The crew is gathering on board for Leg 1 (Salcombe to Lisbon).
It's a very exciting, and also slightly daunting, feeling. There will be many adventures on the way. Thank you to all our well wishers.
Departure from Salcombe likely on Monday 27th, slightly delayed by strong winds due on Sunday. First stop Brittany.