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Monday, November 5, 2012

Sail Madeira to Agadir, Morocco 31Oct -3Nov 2012

Had planned to stay longer in Madeira to enjoy some hikes with Richard and Fiona but the Gribfiles once more indicated that Wednesday 31st October would be a very good weather window for our passage to Agadir in Morocco. Thereafter there would be stronger winds and rain in Madeira and head winds.
 So checked out and by 1130 hrs had left our mooring alongside the wooden government boat, 
 topped up with diesel at the fuel dock just in front of us
 and were on our way
 The weather was better than expected as we sailed past the eastern tip of Madeira - had expected many rain showers - which luckily did not materialise
 The Islas Desertas to the south of us
 far more blue sky than expected, but quite a nasty swell which made life less than pleasant for some of the crew. The wind was more consistently sailable than predicted - we expected to be broad / beam reaching wich we were, but we expected too little wind to be able to sail. - but for much of the trip we had a superb 4 to 5 Bft wind from the SW .
 Night approaching
 The joys of night sailing at full moon
 AIS once more a reassuring aid - during our passage, called up 4 ships on VHF 16 who were on a collision course who agreed to alter cours for us
 Everyone back in good spirits and enjoying being on the ocean
 At this point had 6 ships on AIS and were in a pincer action between two ships who were on reciprocal courses with us the piggy in the middle
 Dawn breaking over the African coast
 As we approeached Morocco, the wind came round to the south as forecast and we were sailing hard on the wind
 The last 36 miles we lost the wind and had to motor - however as the swell had reduced to a ripple,it was very pleasant - and a pod of dolphins entertained us for a while

 The Moroccan Coast

Encountered several Moroccan fishing boats as we closed with the coast
 life is good
 Richard raises Moroccan courtesey flag
 a hive of activity - Ipads and long splicing
 and reading
 almost there

the old Kasbah on the hill to the west of the harbour - the only original buildings left standing after the devastating earthquake of 1960 which flattened Agadir
 Agadir Marina
Safely moored in Agadir Marina by 1500hrs on Saturday 3rd November. In the previous few days there had been a lot of rain in Agadir which had washed a lot of smelly rubbish into the harbour. We were initially put in too small a box together with a small motor boat - not very satisfactory with the surge in the harbour. However, the very pleasant thoughtful Hassan and other marina staff arranged for us to go to this roomy berth the next day - where we can keep ourselves off both fingers - excellent.

- total distance covered 403 Nautical Miles in 76 hours , average speed 5.3 knots, motored 21 hours


Janice & Bob said...

glad to see your trip to Morocco was better than you expected - that is always nice when that happens!

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