Emerald Tales

Currently in Portugal after 7 years in the Mediterranean

01 July 2014 | Porto Petro, Spain
30 June 2014 | Puerto Colonia de Sant Jordi, Spain
28 June 2014 | Santa Ponsa
20 June 2014 | Cala Charraco, Ibiza
20 June 2014 | Cala Binarras, Ibiza
19 June 2014 | San Antonio, Ibiza
17 June 2014 | San Antonio, Ibiza
16 June 2014 | Cala Port Roig, Ibiza
15 June 2014 | Mar Menor, Spain
10 June 2014 | Mar Menor, Spain
08 June 2014 | Almerimar, Spain
30 May 2014 | Almerimar, Spain
26 May 2014 | Gibraltar
25 May 2014 | La Linea, next to Gibraltar
19 May 2014 | River Guadiana, border between Spain and Portugal
18 May 2014 | River Guadiana, border between Spain and Portugal
13 May 2014 | Alcoutim, Portugal
12 May 2014 | River Guadiana, border between Spain and Portugal

What Next for Emerald, Having Escaped Porto Santo?

22 March 2024 | Las Palmas de Gran Canaria
Nichola Wright
What next for Emerald and our ongoing adventures, now that we'd escaped Porto Santo?

Having spent the last 20 months stationery, you'd think we would be raring to go, exploring the anchorages and harbours around the Canary Islands. Well, we are raring to go, but, practicality has sadly trumped sea adventures and we've taken a berth in the marina at Las Palmas de Gran Canaria for a couple of months.

Read more in the latest blog on our website by clicking here.

Full Passage Report: Sailing Porto Santo to Gran Canaria

08 March 2024 | Gran Canaria
Nichola Wright | N wind, going NE F4 to F6
We would have liked something gentle for sailing Porto Santo to Gran Canaria as it would be our first sail in 20 months. However, beggars can't be choosers, especially when those beggars are trying to sail 310nm across the eastern Atlantic in winter.

We could have waited for more benign conditions, but we'd been closely watching the weather for the last two months and only two brief weather windows had opened in that time.

So, we chose to take a reasonable wind forecast but coupled with higher seas than we'd have liked. Otherwise, who knows how much longer we'd be waiting. And at least the waves would be from astern, rather than on the beam.

To read the full report, please click here to go to our blog.

When the Wind Blows in Porto Santo

01 March 2024 | Porto Santo
Nichola Wright | Windy
As we're sitting through a few days of strong winds, it seemed like a good time to write about when the wind blows in Porto Santo.

The winds received in Porto Santo and Madeira are generally controlled by the position of the Azores High. Typically, during the summer months, the resulting wind blows from the north or north east. The wind travels down the coast of Portugal and continues blowing on down across the Madeira island group.

The harbour in Porto Santo is on the south side of the island, and is well placed to provide protection from these winds. In addition, the encircling walls limit the effects of waves and swell.

To read the full blog, please click here to go to our website.

Why Did We Have An Overheating Propeller Shaft?

23 February 2024 | Porto Santo
Nichola Wright
In December, an overheating propeller shaft had necessitated our return to Porto Santo during our passage south to the Canary Islands. We had been slowly motoring for under two hours, with a forecast of north east winds picking up later in the day. Colin had been checking the prop shaft, which was warm but not worryingly hot. Then, we increased the engine revs. Almost instantly we heard a bad sound from inside and promptly stopped the engine. This time when Colin went to check the prop shaft, it was burning hot to touch.

Due to Emerald's design, there was no way to safely investigate the drive train without having her lifted out of the water again. The boatyard in Porto Santo is small and in high demand, but we were offered a place potentially in early January. In reality, early January turned into late January, but beggars can't be choosers. We were just very grateful that a space was available as we were reluctant to travel elsewhere without knowing what the problem was. Further use of the prop shaft could exacerbate the damage and lead to water ingress.

After waiting not so patiently, a place in the yard became available and we able to investigate and fix the propeller issues.

Read all about it here on our web site.

We Need New Sailboat Batteries: Lithium or Lead Acid?

02 February 2024 | Porto Santo
Nichola Wright
Back in October we were basking in the glory of Emerald's successful launch from the boatyard, but unknown to us, there was a problem brewing with our sailboat batteries.

We'd last replaced the power bank in early 2017 using 6 x 6V Trojan T125 lead acid deep cycle/traction batteries. They led a very pampered life with monthly checks and top ups with water. We also rotated them once a year to evenly distribute the loads on the lead cells. We'd spent the last 16 months plugged in to a plentiful power supply, so they hadn't really had had much to do. We expected to get at least another year of use from them and had a plan for a Lithium LiFePO4 upgrade.

However, as with most plans, the batteries had different ideas to ours. Just two weeks after launching we had to face the reality that we had at least one failure.

To read the full blog, please click here to go to our website.

Vessel Name: Emerald
Vessel Make/Model: Kelly Peterson 44
Hailing Port: No fixed abode
Crew: Colin 'Skip' Wright, Nichola Wright
About: One from Northern Ireland, one from Yorkshire, UK
Extra: Emerald has been our home since 2004. We've sailed around the UK, the western Baltic and have spent 7 years in the Med. We're currently in Portugal, planning a refit. Lot's more information about us and the boat can be found at www.yachtemerald.com
Home Page: https://www.yachtemerald.com/