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Monday, December 19, 2016

2016 Sail Las Palmas to Arrecife

1500 hrs Saturday 3/12/16 we left our berth in Lasp Palmas and, after filling the diesel tanks at the fuel pontoon, 

we set off on our 115 nmile voyage to Arrecife on Lanzarote. We chose to start our trip mid afternoon so as to ensure that we would sail through the gap between Fuerteventura and Lanzarote during daylight - there are often wind acceleration zones in the gaps between the islands and it is much easier to handle these in daylight.
Passed close to a ferry boat
Sailed for an hour or so after leaving Las Palmas but the wind then dropped to a light WNW 1 to 3 Bft, so we had to motor for a few hours
Beautiful sunset
By 2345hrs we had cleared the shipping lanes between Gran Canaria and Fuerteventura
For some time, we had seen lights directly ahead of us but there was nothing on our radar nor anything on the AIS. Finally, when we were a few miles from each other, our AIS told us that the lights were from the cruise ship Mein Schiff 2 and that it was on a reciprocal course making 12 kts - all lit up like a huge Xmas Tree. So when we were 3 nmiles apart, we called them up on VHF Ch16 and they politely agreed to change course - we passed a mile apart at around 0030 hrs.
By 00200hrs the wind had increased to a pleasant WNW 4Bft so we unfurled the Genny and started sailing
Dawn breaking as we approached the gap between the islands

Broadreaching in 15 kts apparent wind making over 6 kts
Grip files showing also our position ( blue dot)
Entering the gap
Shortly before this photo was taken we entered one of the infamous accelleration zones with the wind speed increasing fronm 15 to 30 knts in a matter of seconds giving the autopilot a problem ( we had too much sailup for these gusts) requiring a bit pf hand steering. Luckily the wind soon died down again to its previous speed.

The south coast of Lanzarote
1400hrs entering Arrecife harbour
We moored in Arrecife's new Marina de Lanzarote on berth K16 with the help of the very friendly marina staff after a trip of 115 nmiles in 22.25 hrs of which 9hrs motoring. Average speed 5.2 kts.

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