03 June 2014 | Azores to Cadiz
Last night and this morning the seas are generally easier, but we still get the occasional dump of water in the cockpit which keeps the watch on their toes. This morning is showery, with the wind irritatingly sometimes up to 25 knots, and then down to 10 knots but always from NNE - NE keeping us sheeted in.
Watches are loosely 4 hrs on 4 hrs off, with a dog watch 6 - 8pm so that we switch watches each night. Just Karel and myself now on board. It does feel more like racing than cruising, but the upside is that we are getting along quickly. I am also not pressing things up due to the delicate nature of our mainsail, which is going to need some more fixing next calm or port.
Is this normal weather?? Hmm! I think that the winds are generally northerly between Portugal and the Azores because of the Azores High and the Spanish Low pressure regions. But I certainly did not expect it to be so chilly and wet, and was hoping that the wind would be kinder and be more from the NNW than the NNE and NE. For the passage between the Caribbean and the Azores certainly Easterly winds were expected for the first few days, but not the strong ENE winds and heavy seas we experienced, but after that I had expected the voyage to be a battle with calms and sunburn. But in fact we had only 3 sunny days and 3 days with the wind behind the beam, and two days of calms. I was in oilies and pullovers most nights and some days for at least the second half of the trip due to the cool temperatures and humid air which was again unexpected.
But some had it worse, with those poor guys on the Beneteau whose keel fell off, and another which lost its mast somewhere West of the Azores, and probably many more that I do not know about. Generally I think we had it good and have barely used diesel except to charge the batteries and make water. But that's sailing - no guarantees and you get what you get despite the best efforts of the forecasters.
I do not know who/what rollytasker is, but will check it out when next I have an internet connection.
Our dream meal when we arrive is one that doesn't suddenly decide to leap off the table or throw itself at you!