Madeira to Tenerife

After an all too brief stay in Madeira we set off south towards Tenerife leaving Quinto do Lorde at 10:55 on the morning of the 11th November. The wind was blowing ESE in the high 20s so we set just the genoa and put half a reef in which allows us to sail at 7 knots while keeping on a fairly even keel.
Tin Tin's Log for the 11th and 12th Nov 2016

Above is an extract from the log we keep. We try to make an entry every hour but it doesn't always happen... Here we record our position course, speed, some weather information and battery charge in %. We have had to do this because the new fridge seems to eat its way through the batteries much faster than the previous one did. George the autopilot can also be a big drain if the sails are not balanced and he is having to make a lot of corrections to keep us on course!

Our intention was to have a lunch time stopover at the Ilhas Selvagens the following day before proceeding on to Tenerife arriving there at first light on Paul's 63rd birthday on the 13th.

We arrived off the main island, Salvagen Grande, at 10am having been guided by the flashing of the lighthouse during the early hours of the morning. We navigated rather carefully through the rocks to see if we might be able to pick up the mooring, and hang around for an early lunch, but the mooring buoy dint look suitable for our purposes so we waved goodbye to the wardens camp and continued on our way.

We didn't notice the figures at the bottom of the slipway until looking at the photographs later!
The research station on Selvagem Grande

Vahine with Selvagem Pequena in the background
During the sail from Madeira we could see that another sailing vessel  called Vahine from Finland was on exactly the same course and was gradually overhauling us. On the approach to Salvegen Grande we changed course to get a  closer look and this allowed them to catch us up so that we sailed in tandem for the next 2-3 hrs before we had to head further south than their course for Tenerife. It was strange to be sailing in close company for the first time on the voyage and it nicely demonstrated the size of the swell as their hull rose and fell from sight.
Cory's Shearwaters

The Islands are the home to the worlds largest colony of Cory's shearwaters and as we passed close to the island they appeared and flocked around us for a while exhibiting typical shearwater behaviour by flying low and slow over the water and 'walking' on the surface. getting a good photo of them was just about impossible though so you will have to make do with this one!

We continued on our way changing our heading to 194 degrees from the 168 degrees we had been on since leaving Madeira. After our sunset supper we decided that rather than arrive at Santa Cruz de Tenerife at three to four in the morning we would slow down our progress by reducing sail further to maintain about 4 knots. This strategy worked well, although Paul took all sail away for a couple of hours in the last two hours before I came back on watch at 8 am and we proceeded in to find our berth at the marina.

View from the bridge of Stavross S Niarchos
This is the 2nd time that I have been to Tenerife and the second time I have arrived by sea under sail, the last time being aboard the Tallship Stavros S Niarchos in December 2011 having sailed from Falmouth.

So here is a reminder, for me at least, of that wonderful experience!

I would recommend anyone to take a voyage with the Tall Ships Youth Trust on one of their vessels or on one of the many great sailing boats on offer through Classic Sailing.

The Marina was hosting about 30 yachts about to set of on the Atlantic Odessey run by Jimmy Cornell who has sailed the world in an OVINI just like Tin Tin.

We celebrated Paul's birthday with a lunch of beer and tapas before walking round Santa Cruz, visiting the impressive Opera house.

 Spot Paul ...........

We then tidied up Tin Tin, cleared the decks of removable equipment and next morning leaving, Randy Rooster in charge of security (and keeping the freezer frozen..... all fingers crossed.... ), got ourselves on a bus to the airport for the flight home... taking just four hours..
We return to Tenerife on the 1st December to start Part 2 of the adventure :-)

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