Sailing into the Sunset

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The highlight of our trip this week was powering along at 8 knots in the moonlight with a cloudless sky full of stars.  Geoff was determined to take a photo of the dials, because not only were we doing 8 knots, but it was to windward in 23 knots of breeze.  The sea was remarkably flat and we were flying. We were on our way back from Gran Canaria and thoroughly enjoying the sailing. 

The week started with a day sail to La Graciosa, followed by our first overnight passage to Las Palmas, Gran Canaria.  We left La Graciosa early afternoon and enjoyed dinner on deck whilst sailing into the sunset.  Downwind the 120 miles took us 22 hours and we arrived at lunch time.  After an afternoon siesta it was time to go ashore and explore.

After a night in Las Palmas we left the following morning and sailed along the northern coast of Gran Canaria to anchor under the cliffs in Puerto Sardinia for lunch.  We left here late evening giving us two nights at sea for the return upwind passage.  Both nights were beautiful and peaceful giving us plenty of time for silent contemplation.  On two occasions we were also joined by dolphins.

If you are new to night sailing it is fascinating.  We had plenty to look at – ships in the channel between Gran Canaria and Fuerteventura, lights and lighthouses as we passed through the channel between Fuerteventura and Lanzarote, headlands outlined in the moonlight but otherwise unlit, and finally locating a harbour entrance in the dark.  We tied alongside in Puerto Calero marina at 0100.

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Sailing for 3 nights out of the 7 is quite tiring, so our last day was spent with a leisurely breakfast, exploring Puerto Calero for a couple of hours and then a gentle 2 hour sail back to Marina Rubicon.

The experience on our adventure cruises is very different to our relaxed cruises.  We only have one left this season before we leave for Madeira – a couple of spaces still available from 16th to 23rd February.  Why not try it.