Yacht Cerulean Atlantic Adventure

Vessel Name: Cerulean of Penryn
Vessel Make/Model: Seastream43
Hailing Port: Gosport
Crew: Richard & Alison Rowley
About:
Richard has been sailing for over 40 years and has done over 12000nm of coastal sailing mainly from out of Portsmouth Harbour (UK) including many cross channel passages to the Channel Islands, and north coast of France and along the UK South coast, as well as yacht charters in Greece and Croatia. [...]
Extra: We have both taken a year off work to sail the Atlantic in our 43' (13m) sailing yacht Cerulean of Penryn which we purchased in 2015. We are signed up for the ARC+ 2018 rally from Las Palmas Gran Canaria to St Lucia via the Cape Verde Islands
Home Page: www.yachtcerulean.com
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21 May 2019 | 38:25N 029:20W
19 May 2019 | 38:31N 034:16W
18 May 2019 | 32:47N 063:44W
18 May 2019 | 38:31N 037:37W
17 May 2019 | 38:10N 040:49W
17 May 2019 | 37:55N 042:01W
15 May 2019 | 37:49N 042:58W
15 May 2019 | 36:26N 046:39W
15 May 2019 | 37:10N 044:57W
14 May 2019 | 35:39N 048:42W
14 May 2019 | 35:03N 050:29W
13 May 2019 | 34:30N 053:01W
12 May 2019 | 34:27N 054:04W
10 May 2019 | 33:18N 059:11W
09 May 2019 | 33:25N 060:54W
08 May 2019 | 32:58N 062:31W
08 May 2019 | 32:29N 062:45W
29 April 2019 | Convict Bay, St George's Harbour, Bermuda
25 April 2019 | 31:35N 066:04W
25 April 2019 | 31:17N 066:37W
Recent Blog Posts
21 May 2019 | 38:25N 029:20W

Bermuda-Horta 17

Trip:1745 Distance to Waypoint 35; Bearing to Waypoint 080deg 38deg 25'N 029deg 20'W COG: 080 SOG:5.4 Wind W f4

19 May 2019 | 38:31N 034:16W

Bermuda-Horta 16

Trip:1521 Distance to Waypoint 265; Bearing to Waypoint 089deg 38deg 31'N 034deg 15'W COG: 0103 SOG:6.0 Wind SW f4

18 May 2019 | 32:47N 063:44W

Bermuda-Horta 01

47.6nm down 1735 to go

18 May 2019 | 38:31N 037:37W

Bermuda-Horta 15

Trip:1379 Distance to Waypoint 423; Bearing to Waypoint 087deg 38deg 31'N 037deg 37'W COG: 092 SOG:7.6 Wind SSW f4-5

17 May 2019 | 38:10N 040:49W

Bermuda-Horta 13

Trip:1249 Distance to Waypoint 674; Bearing to Waypoint 084deg 38deg 10'N 040deg 49'W COG: 081 SOG:5.7 Wind SW f4

17 May 2019 | 37:55N 042:01W

Bermuda-Horta 14

Trip:1192 Distance to Waypoint 632; Bearing to Waypoint 083deg 37deg 55'N 042deg 01'W COG: 081 SOG:6.0 Wind SSW f4-5

Bermuda-Horta 17

21 May 2019 | 38:25N 029:20W
Richard Rowley
Trip:1745 Distance to Waypoint 35; Bearing to Waypoint 080deg 38deg 25'N 029deg 20'W COG: 080 SOG:5.4 Wind W f4

Boat time 08:00 (UT-3)

Day 15 at sea

Bacon sandwich time

Well we had more of the same throughout the day, mackerel skies and mares tails off and on mixed with 8/8th cloud cover that came and went. threatening to be the front.

Noon, from the forecasts we are expecting the low to be on us sometime late afternoon. We are awaiting the the warm front to hit with strong winds and rain.

14:00 i look out the companion way, patched of blue sky above through the thin alto stratus clouds above us and to port, behind to the west and south thickening cloud rapidly approaching.

14:30 check outside again, the blue sky above is being lost to thickening altostratus cloud, getting thicker astern of us, then a wall of nimbo stratus from sea level reaching up into the sky. Nominal wind speed now 20-22kts gusting 25kts. This is it coming!

I kit up with full foul weather gear to go out in to the cockpit to be prepared to alter course down wind to reduce the apparent wind speed over the deck. By the time I have kited up and am on deck, we have clear blue sky overhead and all around, with just the odd wisp of wisp of cloud. Falling astern and to port the bank of menacing cloud is retreating, passing us by astern going NNE. but there is another bank of cloud on the horizon to windward on the starboard side.

What is happening, what has just happened, has the front and the storm passed us by. We shall just have to wait and see how this pans out, but for now we have a stay of execution.

Not for long; 15:00; The wind has now veered to SSW and increased to force 6, that was the warm front passing, we have borne away down wind a bit now heading for our destination; masking 5-6kts in 20-25kts of true wind the apparent wind over the deck is 15-18kts, and the waves on our starboard quarter, the motion of Cerulean being quite reasonable considering. We sailed on thus for the next making reasonable progress covering 52NM in eight and a half hours, At 22000 the 16m Sailing yacht Tauranga passed us within less than 500m, a bit of a tense time. By 22:30 the wind was 34kts plus, gusting up to 38kts, Force 8 gale for an hour. 23:00 the wind veered as if in an instant to the to the north west, 90 degree, as the cold front passed over bringing with it torrential rain, and we both had to get our waterproofs on and gybe the boat round to get us back on course. Wind still blowing force 6 for further hour and a half until 01:30 the wind disappeared to NW force 2, not enough us to make an attempt at sailing, so the engine on and I went back to bed whilst Alison took watch her watch.

At 03:00 the wind went back round to the SE blowing f4. Alison tried pulling out the staysail, but with the wind astern it would not fill properly and then she noticed that the lower starboard shroud (D1) had pulled a strand at the top terminal, this is potentially a nasty situation, we could loose the rig. We immediately furled the staysail an headed into wind and dropped the main to take load off the rigging. I have jury rigged a stay using the downhaul/uphaul line for the whisker pole car on the front of the mast, it is just above the terminal for the D1 shroud. and have sweated it down with a short length of rope to the turnbuckle, I hope that will hold. We still have the storm jib flying from the secondary forestay on the port tack to steady the boat a bit as there is a 3-4m swell running. It is a pity we cannot sail, as there is a nice W f4-5, but as we are in easy motoring distance of Horta only 50NM to go it is not worth risk of loosing the mast for.

We had a few rain squalls pass by at dawn but now we have Cerulean blue skies with a few fair weather cumulus floating by, and all looking well to windward.

Thus we have been motoring since 05:00, now only 10NM to go, 2 hours or so.

The majestic towering mountains of Faial loomed out of the murk at about 10:00

Richard and Alison yacht Cerulean of Penryn

if you want to see pictures or more look us up on for us at www.yachtcerulean.com facebook @yachtcerulean, instagram and if that is not enough you can always search 'Yacht Cerulean' on youtube if you are really bored.

Bermuda-Horta 16

19 May 2019 | 38:31N 034:16W
Richard Rowley
Trip:1521 Distance to Waypoint 265; Bearing to Waypoint 089deg 38deg 31'N 034deg 15'W COG: 0103 SOG:6.0 Wind SW f4

Boat time 15:30 (UT-3)

Watching the weather.

The British are renowned for there preoccupation of talking about the weather...is it going to rain today? shall I take an umbrella? turned out nice again...and all that.

Well for yachtsmen and seafarers the world over taking about and watching the weather is part of everyday life and a necessity, to ensure a safe and comfortable passage as possible...it may safe your life.

We know that we have some adverse weather coming from our forecasts, the Admiral, Alison's brother sends me a daily forecasts and updates, and I am able to download grib files via Satellite phone and SSB radio and modem. This information is essential to give us and indication of what is happening and is going to happen, but they are only forecasts based on computer generated models. What is important is what is happening out in the field. or in our case in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean or to be more precise at 38deg 31'N 034deg 15'W and beyond. We are fortunate enough on this passage to be able to discuss and plan our route of having company in the form of another yacht we have been passage making with SY Emotion.

A low is is supposed to be approaching us from the west and it is supposed to be bringing with it strong winds and rain. We need top be prepared and make sure the boat i s prepared, items are secured and we have shortened sail in good time. We intend to hoist the storm jib and put the third reef into the main. All these jobs require working on the foredeck, which in the wind and sea we have at the moment is relatively safe and easy to do, but, if you leave it too late and you are in a rough sea and strong winds it becomes a whole lot harder and the risks are greater, of damaging or loosing gear, injury and possible falling overboard.

This might not be of interest to some of you and others may find it intersting

I started watching the weather more closely when I went on watch yesterday morning:

04:00 The sun rose 10 minutes later behind low cloud on the horizon, 10 minutes later it was a golden shining orbe above the clouds spreading a warm glow, above us 7/8ths cloud cover Wind SW f4. Barometer 1025

05:00 Blue sky overhead and to the south of us some fair weather clouds to the south of us. Hazy on the horizon; Thickening cloud to the west and north of us. 3/8th cloud

06:00; 7/8ths cloud all around us; some blue patches above us; could see high altitude cirrus clouds aboce alto sirrus. SW 5; 1025mb

08:00; 3/8th cloud again. this time mackerel skies (Cirrocumulus), sign of approaching front 6-12hrs. Thick and layered cloud to far north and far west; blue sky to east and south disappearing into a hazy horizon.; SW f5; 1026mb

09:00; 4/8ths cloud; mackerel skies being enveloped from below by thickening altostratus clouds ; SW 4; 1025mb

10:00; 4/8the cloud; altosrtatus; SW 4; 1026mb

12:00; 5/8th cloud; thin wispy Cirrus all around; some blue sky patches; SW4; 1023mb

Altered heading from due east 089deg to EES 103 to take us further away from centre of storm and give us a better angle on wind to Horta once front has passed and wind backed to west.

14:00; 4/8th cloud; mackerel sky (Cc) and mares tails (Ci), classic sign of approaching warm front in 12-15hrs; SW4; 1023mb

15:00; 5/8th cloud; mackerel sky being envelope from below by Altostratus; SW4; 1023mb

16:00; 5/8th cloud; much of the medium level altostratus has cleared leaving high level cirrus wisps; large patches of blue sky; wisps of cirrus; Mackerel sky to west; SW 4-5 1023mb;

16:30: Mackerel sky and mares tails being enveloped by lower level Altrostratus clouds Took down yankee jib and hoisted the storm jib in its place, whilst it was still daylight and relatively calm; set stay sail as well; still 2 reefs in main; still making good speed over 6kts; wind now gusting 25kts; 1023mb

18:23; 3/8th cloud clearing; SW4; 1023mb

20:00 Put 3rd reef into mainsail; still making 6kts; motion more comfortable

21:00; 3/8th Mares tails; thickening Altostratus from behind; SW5; 1023mb

22:00; clear sky

20/05 00:00 6/8ths mackerel sky being enveloped form below by altostratus; halo around moon SW 5-6; 1023mnb

02:00; 8/8th Altostratus; SW 5-6; 1022mb

04:00; 6/8th Altostratus above; mares tails ahead SW4-5; 1022mb

07:00; 4/8th Mackerel aky and mares tails dotted around in all directions; lots of blue sky around; thick layered darker cloud on horizon to west; ...all looks quite beautiful at the moment, but is sign of adverse weather approaching 12-24hrs; SW f4-5 1021mb

We are now about 30 hrs from Horta.

We have a constant succession over the past 24hrs of mackerel skies and mares tail covered and then uncovered by layered altostratus cloud from below, changing every couple of hours or so. I do know why this has been, may be a series of small fronts passing; visibility has been good through out all of this and we have not had any rain...may be we are traveling at similar speed to the weather system and not letting it catch up.

The surface pressure has remained quite high, my grib files tell me that it should be 1017-1019mb rather than 1025-1021 we have been reading, but the barometer is slowly going down.

I am expecting the front to be upon us in 9-10hrs time by 20:00UT today 20/05 17:00 boat time (UT-3) then we should have an increase in wind strength may be 30kts+ and lots of rain; the cold front then passing tomorrow morning 21/05 06:00UT 03:00 boat time; and then the wind to back and go round to the west and reduce a bit, and then the rain might stop, and we can then alter course directly to Horta by then will be another half day or so arriving mid afternoon tomorrow 21/05.

We shall see how things pan out.

Richard and Alison yacht Cerulean of Penryn

if you want to see pictures or more look us up on for us at www.yachtcerulean.com facebook @yachtcerulean, instagram and if that is not enough you can always search 'Yacht Cerulean' on youtube if you are really bored.

Bermuda-Horta 01

18 May 2019 | 32:47N 063:44W
Richard Rowley
47.6nm down 1735 to go

Tuesday 7th May 2019 (local time) Farewell to Bermuda

We have managed to release ourselves from the enticing lure of Burmuda.

We left about noon local time and have been underway for about 9hrs now. and are making progress towards the Port of Horta on the East side of the Island of Faial in the Azores.

The wind has settled down to a steady from a force 5 down to NNNW force 4, 10-15kts and pushing us through the water at 4.5 to 5.5kts on a beam reach. We have just ashty of a knot of fair current under our keel, giving us a speed over ground (SOG) of 5-6kts. We are expecting the wind to diminish a bit move round to the North East by morning, than back again to the NW and probably increase a bit.

We currently have 1 reef in the main, full genoa and staysail. The true wind direction is just abaft the beam but the apparent wind is just forward of the beam enabling us to set the staysail.

The sun set here an hour ago just after 8pm, we have slither crescent relaxing on his back, and a few starts and planets visible in the clear sky above us. There cumulus clouds encircling our path of dark dark blue clear sky, some the clouds starting to form small anvil shapes.

Of to our starboard bow, 2 1/2 miles away I can see dipping below the swell the white stern light of S/Y Emotion our Norwegian friends who are traveling in company with at the moment. I suspect that by morning we will have lost sight of them as they slowly pull away from us, certainly as a lighter more modern boat they will have the advantage as the wind diminishes. We shall try to maintain VHF radio contact with them checking once or twice a day. It is nice to to have the company of another yacht. We first met S/Y Emotion in Figuira De Foz in Portugal whilst we were both making our passage down to Las Palmas for the ARC+, and here we 7 months and 9000nm later sailing ion company with them again as we both venture home.

Bermuda is a fair and pleasant an archipelago of Islands as you ever wish to venture to. It has a lovely climate, and a certain uniqueness that puts it into a class of its own. The islands are very 'British' but in as nice relaxed kind of way. The islanders are casual in a smart kind of way, the islands themselves are neat and ordered but not too fussy nor too relaxed The buildings and house all very neat and well maintained all designed and constructed within the strict purposeful codes of Bermudian Architecture, many dating back 100 years or more, may 200 years, there are few storm damaged house and buildings like we have seen the Caribbean islands, may be these islands have not been so ravaged in the recent past by severe hurricanes, but I know for sure that they get there share of gales and storm force winds. The light in these islands is quite something to behold, the shallow waters that are all around these islands enable the suns rays to reflect the sandy sea bed making the sea many shades of turquoise, pastel shades of blues and greens, which are reflected on to the underside of the white fluffy fair weather clouds above and the cloud street that runs the axis of the islands, together with the sunlight reflecting off the brilliant white of the limewashed stone roofs and the pastel colours of the rendered walls to the houses. it perhaps this light that has inspired so many Bermudian artists to create some of the best art i have seen anywhere. If I had to make my home on any one of the 50 or so islands we have visited so far on this Odyssey I suspect this might be the one. No wonder the early British Settlers wanted to make their home.

'Fayre Wynds and Kynd Seas

Richard and Alison yacht Cerulean of Penryn

if you want to see pictures or more look us up on for us at www.yachtcerulean.com facebook @yachtcerulean, instagram and if that is not enough you can always search 'Yacht Cerulean' on youtube if you are really bored.

Bermuda-Horta 15

18 May 2019 | 38:31N 037:37W
Richard Rowley
Trip:1379 Distance to Waypoint 423; Bearing to Waypoint 087deg 38deg 31'N 037deg 37'W COG: 092 SOG:7.6 Wind SSW f4-5

Boat time 14:00 (UT-3)

Stormy weather ahead!

We have done well on this passage so far to avoid any adverse weather, we have managed to keep a nice following wind throughout the passage thus far, sailing the fine line between the bottom of the fronts passing to the north of us and the area of high pressure and light winds to the south of us. This has had the added bonus that with the high to the south of us and that being the direction the swell is coming from the sea has been relatively calm, thus with the fair wind we have been making good speed through the water. On top of that the current has definitely been in our favour constantly over the past 24hrs. Over the past day noon to noon, we have done 140NM through the water averaging 5.83knts, but we have progressed towards our waypoint 160nm over ground, our speed over ground averaging 6.66kts...on average we have benefited from 0.833kts of current, which is handy, giving us an extra 20nm per day free. At the moment the current is varying in direction from NE to SE anywhere between 0.5kts up to 2.0kts. earlier on the passage sometimes is was with us and other times against us, but all in all giving us a net gain, with a strong NE flow and weaker NW flows or even SW flow, but for now definitely in our favour :) But all is not good in the forecast for our last 24 hours at sea on this passage with two fronts coming through Monday night through to Tuesday morning bringing rain and strong winds with gusts up to 35-40kts with a nominal wind speed of 25kts. Much as we encountered early on on a our passage to Bermuda a few weeks ago.

We shall reduce to three reefs and hoist the storm jib, we already have the secondary forestay in place for the Yankee jib we are using. We can use the stay sail to adjust speed.

Our route eta is hovering around late afternoon Monday 20/05 to before noon Tuesday 21/05. We are certainly getting a good and consistent wind at the moment SW f4-5 which is pushing us along at 6.5kts and current giving us a lift on average of 1kt to NE to SE. It looks as though the harbour at Horta is safely accessible in all weather and looks as though we should get shelter from the sea and hopefully from the wind once inside.

We had been getting a few flying fish leaping on board earlier on board when the sea temperature was higher but since it has dropped to below 22 degrees C, now at 20 degrees C, we have not had any for a couple of days now, but, a wave had managed to deposit a squid on to the side deck yesterday, which I am sure that brother Damon would have told me to use as a lure, so I did...but still did not manage to catch anything. The squid has now gone and now my hook is caught up on the safety lanyard that is tied to the Hydrovane rudder...where it shall stay for the remainder of this passage. Other than that not a lot of wildlife, a pod of 4 or 5 dolphins swam with us for a while yesterday morning and last night in the darkness just before dawn a bird was hovering around, I think he wanted land on the bimini top, but the wind generator was putting him off. I could not make it out properly and assume it have been a seabird but it did not look the right shape in the darkness, more like a pigeon, that had perhaps lost its way or a migrant on transit from somewhere to somewhere else.

Richard and Alison yacht Cerulean of Penryn

if you want to see pictures or more look us up on for us at www.yachtcerulean.com facebook @yachtcerulean, instagram and if that is not enough you can always search 'Yacht Cerulean' on youtube if you are really bored.

Bermuda-Horta 13

17 May 2019 | 38:10N 040:49W
Richard Rowley
Trip:1249 Distance to Waypoint 674; Bearing to Waypoint 084deg 38deg 10'N 040deg 49'W COG: 081 SOG:5.7 Wind SW f4

Boat time 16:00 (UT-3)



MORE ON BREAD

For those of you who read my musings of yesterday I know that I should not of blasphemed so yesterday, as, of course all armchair bakers know, there is only true goddess of baking and that is Mary...however I do not have the teachings of Mary, but Delia was of course a prodigy of the great Mary.

I did forget to mention yesterday, that before you out the loaf tin the oven, you must go and stand in the corner with a damp tea towel over your head for 30-40 minutes if you are somewhere hot, or one hour if you are at room temperature, and when you come back you will find that your dough has risen as if by some minor miracle...then you can put it in the oven. By the way, incase you were wondering the great Delia, did not mention anything about 'kneading the dough' merely sating 'now transfer your dough to the tin by stretching it out to and oblong and folding one edge into the centre and the other edge over that'... I didn't really understand all that...perhaps I am not a true believer...but what is the point of making bread if you cannot knead the dough...after all that is why we make bread, kneading the dough is therapy for the soul...and i believe it to be necessary for stretching the molecules of your mind and that of the dough....all this leads me to believe that Goddess Delia may not be human at all, and not mortal but a true God...anyway she is so rich she does not need the dough... So Mr Hovis why did you become a Baker...I needed the dough...kneaded, needed, play on words you see...oh never mind

Richard and Alison yacht Cerulean of Penryn

if you want to see pictures or more look us up on for us at www.yachtcerulean.com facebook @yachtcerulean, instagram and if that is not enough you can always search 'Yacht Cerulean' on youtube if you are really bored.

Bermuda-Horta 14

17 May 2019 | 37:55N 042:01W
Richard Rowley
Trip:1192 Distance to Waypoint 632; Bearing to Waypoint 083deg 37deg 55'N 042deg 01'W COG: 081 SOG:6.0 Wind SSW f4-5

Boat time 05:20 (UT-3)

SUNRISE AND ALL THAT

On voyage such as this, especially as we head east towards the rising sun, and my first watch of the day being the dawn watch, 04:00 to 08:00, I get to look straight into the sunrise every morning, and have done so for the past 10 mornings, and I have plenty of time to ponder about such things, much as did those early mariners who explored our oceans millennia ago. We know that it was of much interest to early man whether he be on land or at sea as is testified by structures such as Stonehenge, Avebury Ring etc. such edifices where created so that all knew the dates of midsummer, preparations could be made, gods needed to be appeased, sacrifices be made...blah blah blah.

The sun and its timings and changes throughout the year has always had significance to mankind as it has to all animals and plant life. Earths tilted axis ensures that the time of sunrise changes everyday and it follows a regular pattern, an annual pattern that marks out our seasons, it sets our biological clocks. The vernal equinox when daylight equals night and the days start to get longer, winter is being left behind and summer is coming, plants start to grow and flower as the temperature increases, animals have their young such that they may have the summer to grow and put on weight before the harshness of winter comes. The ancient people knew that mid-summers day, 21st June to us is significant, as from now on the days were going to get shorter, to early man this was very significant. we must make hay whilst the sun shines, if they did not work to seasons their crops would fail and their civilisation's would fail.

That all be very good for early man, but what significance did it have for the ancient mariners and early astronomers and philosophers. Where do all these sun's keep on going to. 'there must be a whole stack of those behind that mountain over there I see one set behind it every night' said Eric as he looked out to the west 'that's ok' said his mate Barny 'a new one comes up every morning from over there' as he looked out to the east. Surely if the earth was flat and infinite there would be nowhere for these sun's to rise from or set to, it would not be possible that the sun was orbiting around the earth, the earth being the centre of the universe, as was believed until relatively recently. Likewise if the earth was flat how could it orbit the sun. Having looked at the horizon that encompasses me for the past 10 days day in and day out, I can see the curvature of the earth, perhaps if lived in Terry Pratchet's Disc World, where by the word was a flat disc I might see the edge and it might appear curved, but that would mean that the world would only be as large as the horizon I could see which is no more than 5 miles in any direction, giving disc world a diameter of 10NM, I can sail that in 2 hours and fall off the edge. No, I do not think that these early mariners were that ignorant, they knew that they were not going to fall off the edge of the known world but find a 'New World'. I do not believe that it was not in the within the with of early man to look up at the skies above and see the sun as a disc, or even an orb, and in particular to look up at the moon and see its different guises as it waxed and waned and notice too that it sometimes appeared as a silver disc and others a crescent but yet still see the shaded part of the moon. They would have grabbed two rocks and rotated them around each other and realised that these celestial bodies where in actual fact spherical, and would have quickly put two and two together and surmised that the the Earth the very land that they trod upon was similar, why would it not be.

The sun and the stars had been studied for millennia since the down of early man. Man had soon worked out the patterns of the sun, and the other celestial bodies, how they moved, when sun and the planets would rise and set, when the moon would wax and wane, and their elliptic routes across the sky, along with the discovery of loadstone and the earths magnetic field this information was all a powerful tool. Once they had worked out how this information could be used to navigate the world. Armed with this information and know how they had the the most powerful weapon with which to conquer and rule the world. This information was top secret. Perhaps to guard this secret notions that the world be flat should be perpetuated...propaganda. Even today there are 'flat earther's' those that believe the world to be flat, not even convinced by the irrefutable evidence from pictures from space showing the earth to be circular from which ever angle it is viewed, this would could only happen if the world where a sphere. Ah but of course the Apollo missions where all a hoax and the pictures faked. I tend to think that the conspiracy was the other way round. It was in the interest of the authorities, the powers that be, the Church and in particular the Catholic church to make the mere mortals believe that earth was flat as such, that theory was perpetuated and any dissenter crushed as a heretic. As were those who believed that the sun was the centre of our universe and not earth and that in fact the earth spins round the sun with the stars motionless, rather than the official held belief that the earth was the centre of the universe and all the heavenly bodies circle slowly round us. It was Copernicus who let the cat out of the bag, probably as controlled leak from the Church as there too many who believed otherwise and they would look stupid if they held onto the deceit.

Well how big is Earth, according to Christopher Columbus who in 1492 discovered the West Indies, so named as he was sure that after sailing west from the Canary Islands some 2400NM to the 'New World' on no less than four occasions was insistent that he was actually in the East Indies and part of Asia of which he knew to be on the other side of the world, he apparently maintained this notion until his death in 1506. Apparently this crossing took 36 days, an average speed of 2.77kts ((2400/36f.66nm a day 66.66/24=2.77 knots)), thus believing that only 2500nm or so separated the Asian Indies from Europe whilst heading west, instead of the 15000, or so miles that does actually separate them.

I do not believe a great navigator and mariner like Columbus could be that ignorant, nor Queen Isabella of Castile. This was calculated plot that did not go entirely to plan, but achieved the same goal...the accumulation of wealth to satisfy the greed of the Spanish Hierarchy and to fund their wars to achieve world domination as they believed was Gods will. Yes, Columbus set of to find a direct western route to the Asia and the riches that lie there, the spice trade, without needing to use the dangerous Silk Road. He would have known that the Americas existed, may be not to what extent but he knew they were there, hey may not have known about all the islands he would encounter, in particular the 'useless islands' as he called the Lesser Antilles, he may not of even knew that South America existed, although I think this unlikely. What he hoped to find was a way through in Central America, the 'Western Passage' if you like, a bit like the North West Passage but only further South and not covered in ice. He knew what he was doing and he knew exactly where he was, he just had to find a way through Central America, and of course a way through to the Pacific was eventually established in 1914 with the opening of the Panama canal, the idea of which was first muted in the sixteen hundreds and indeed the french had started to build the 48 mile long canal in the 1880's. Perhaps Columbus had notions building such a canal once he had found that there was not a waterway through this narrow part of the Americas. he would have surely soon discovered that the Pacific Ocean and the route to the East was only a few hundred miles away.

The reason that he maintained until his dying day in 1506 that these lands he had found were the Asia Indies was that he had a contract with Queen Isabella that if he succeeded, he would have a title and great riches...he would have lost all he had and his riches to come. The Queen was quite happy to be deceived as he was bringing home ships laden with gold and riches...they would have both been fools not to go along with this charade, and besides he was the greatest navigator that ever lived who would dare to contradict him. His crew would not have known one way or the other, and the ratings where probably earning a cut of the share, so would not say otherwise. Meanwhile Columbus continued to find that way through. Therefore his exploration had been a success of sorts. The reason to find the route to the Indies was wealth, he found wealth in abundance, possibly more than he would have done if had found a way through. Of course if he was really a mariner and navigator he could have ventured round the nasty Cape Horn...but why should he risk his life and cosy lifestyle for that. Did he deliberately lie? was he being just economical with the truth? or was he just deliuded?





Richard and Alison yacht Cerulean of Penryn

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Cerulean of Penryn's Photos - sbdcp82ja
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Leaving Day: Richard and Alison at Gosport Marina on departure day
 
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