The story of Topaz Rival

27 July 2021 | Cascais
26 July 2021 | Sines
24 July 2021 | Sagres
23 July 2021 | Sagres
20 July 2021 | Lagos
17 July 2021 | Ferragudo
13 July 2021 | Culatra
08 July 2021 | Laranjeiras
06 July 2021 | Alcoutim
04 July 2021 | Laranjeiras
03 July 2021 | Ayamonte
28 June 2021 | Cadiz
25 June 2021 | Mazagon
21 June 2021
17 June 2021 | Farol
15 June 2021 | Vilamoura
12 June 2021 | Ferragudo
11 June 2021 | Ferragudo


27 July 2021 | Cascais
Martin Whitfield
Another motoring day, starting at silly o'clock in the morning, with the Irish boat Colimba for company on the journey north. Pretty uneventful trip but we were glad to make it by lunchtime as the wind duly got up in the afternoon and early evening to nearly 30 knots in the Cascais anchorage. It was a bit too lively to dinghy ashore - and we were tired from the early start - so exploring Cascais and beyond will have to wait until tomorrow.

Long way to Sines

26 July 2021 | Sines
Martin Whitfield | F3 N
We all got up at dawn to make the 60-mile trip from Sagres to Sines around Cape St Vincent. Several boats simultaneously upped their anchors and were off to make the most of a short window of not so strong winds to journey north. We left around 6.45 am, after giving Buzz a quick walk ashore and packing up the dinghy, and were in Sines at 6.15pm. The marina at Sines is friendly, inexpensive and the gateway to a lovely Portuguese small town. A couple of nights enabled us to do some washing eat some more sardines and meet a couple of Irish sailors who agreed to sail in company, leaving at 2am, to get to Cascais in another short break in the northerly trades.

Windy in Sagres

24 July 2021 | Sagres
Martin Whitfield | F5/6 NW
Sailors for hundreds of years have been stuck in exactly the same anchorage as us waiting for the right wind to take them around Cape St Vincent. Until the 15th century, this was the "end of the world", the point where Western Europe disappeared into the Atlantic. We are planning to leave early tomorrow morning to give us time to get the 60-odd miles to Sines before dark. The wind has been strong from the north today - up to 25 knots plus in the anchorage and few boats have been sailing past in either direction, unlike yesterday when there was a virtual fleet of sailing boats coming around the Cape heading for the fleshpots of the Algarve. Still a quiet day allowed Sarah and Elwyn to try out the dinghy....

Sagres - waiting for the wind

23 July 2021 | Sagres
Martin Whitfield | F5/6 NW
Days spent pouring over weather forecasts saw the predicted gap in the north wind blowing down the Portugese coast gradually disappear. However, there is a small opportunity on Sunday (maybe) so we moved to anchor in Sagres in anticipation. Lively sail from Lagos with a bit of wind, then none as it switched direction and then lots from the north west as predicted. Sailed virtually all the way which was good for Sarah and Elwyn to get a flavour of the boat.

Lagos return

20 July 2021 | Lagos
Martin Whitfield
Well, we’re back on our old berth in Lagos marina, waiting for Sarah and Elwyn to join ship tomorrow. First however was another trip to the vet with the grass seed infection swelling up again. This time the vet managed to remove the grass seed from his leg in a minor operation and he is now a bit groggy and feeling very sorry for himself. Hopefully with more antibiotics and anti-inflammatory tablets he will be back to himself in a couple of days.

Portimao is burning

17 July 2021 | Ferragudo
Martin Whitfield | F2 W
Arrived back at the Ferragudo anchorage guided by a plume of smoke from somewhere inland. Looks like a wild fire has taken hold in the countryside. Changes in wind direction occasionally blow the smoke our way and it smells organic rather than chemical. I hope firefighters manage to extinguish the blaze as quickly as they can. Will be here for a few days before heading to Lagos to meet Sarah and Elwyn.
Vessel Name: Topaz Rival
Vessel Make/Model: Rival 36
Hailing Port: Dartmouth
Crew: Martin Whitfield
About: Plus dog Buzz
Topaz Rival's Photos - Topaz Rival as purchased (Main)
Photos 1 to 11 of 11
Topaz on her original berth: She has been here for 20 years or more
The quarter berth: No to sure whether to believe this, but was told this was the original plastic cover!
Instrument panel: The depth and autopilot work, not so sure about the GPS!
Bukh 36: I’m told that Bukh paint is first class. Well this engine is 29-years-old...
Survey lift shows keel shape: Topaz is the scheel keel version 1.5m draft
Rudder and skeg: As Tom Cunliffe says “a wholesome compromise between precise steering at sea, comfort, and athletic steering in harbour”. We’ll see about the latter...
Dirt and mould: An image of neglect
Deck: Nothing that a good clean can’t solve
Crazy portlights: There are 10 of these...
30 Photos
Created 30 March 2021
Post Covid sailing
5 Photos
Created 11 June 2020
Winter refit at Baltic Wharf
38 Photos | 1 Sub-Album
Created 2 November 2019
A selection of pictures from sailing in 2019
31 Photos
Created 1 August 2019

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