The Grib files indicated that we would have a NE 4 for the next couple of days,perfect for a fast passage from Santa Maria to São Jorge, 180 nMiles to the NW.
So at 0715 hrs we left Vila do Porto marina on Santa Maria and motored westwards for 1/2 hour until we were out of the wind shadow of the island
At 0745, engine off and we were charging along at 60 degrees to the apparent wind in a NE5 Bft wind at over 7 knots on our course of 305 degrees with one reef in mainsail and two reefs in the Genny.
Santa Maria still visible
Still had the Marinetraffic.com AIS plot on line via 3G , showing our position and the positions of other ships in the area
Just before nightfall, at around 2130 hrs, an ominous band of black clouds appeared before us. So we put a second reef in the mainsail, and felt much more relaxed about the coming night
By 0720 hrs, São Jorge was clearly visible, some 25 nmiles ahead of us
As we approached São Jorge, the wind became a bit fickle and we motmored for a while then sailed then motored , sailed, motored
Sailing between São Jorge to Starboard and
Pico on Port
Getting close to Velas
1450 hrs Porto das Velas just ahead of us
We called up the marina on Ch 16 and were very pleased to hear that our very friendly harbour master was waiting to take our lines on the hammerhead of A pontoon
Total distance covered, 181.7 nMiles in 32 hours of which only 5 hours on the engine. Average speed 5.67 knots.