Getting Ready to Depart
26 July 2009 | Cape Town, South Africa
It has been an interesting few weeks since the launch of Leopard A4001 - with some frustrations thrown in for luck! The boat was moved to the "M" berth at Royal Cape Yacht Club where Robertson & Caine have their workforce and there has been a flurry of activity to complete the alterations and changes TUI Marine has requested.
To slow down the process we have had the professional photographers on board on two occasions to do their shoots for brochures and advertising and have had the boat out in Table Bay for test sails and more photographs. Each time this happened, we had to strip off the markers placed all over the boat to indicate faults - and then put them back afterwards.
On the crew side, Hardie (1st Mate), Andries and Neels (crew), are all waiting for the boat to be signed off and move aboard. We have done all our provisioning and now only need to prep the boat for the delivery, get the provisions on board and purchase the last minute perishable stores, before going through the clearing out procedure and departing.
I have been told that final sign-off is on Monday 27 - let's hope that it is!
Looking at the weather, there is a cold front moving across the South Atlantic which should reach Cape Town about mid-week, bringing unfavourable winds and seas with the associated rain. Hopefully this will pass quickly but, unfortunately, there is another huge frontal system following it, which will introduce NW winds and large seas, making it very difficult to get away from the Cape. We may sail up to Saldanha Bay during the lull and depart for St Helena Island from there as the front swipes the Cape - we will have to judge what to do closer to the time.
Well, hope the above updates everybody. The above picture is of our proposed route but may change as we progress north. John