Wednesday 17 October 2012

Kicking back at San Telmo - Around Mallorca Beach by Beach

August 25-27  -  2012

A very rare thing happened on Alcheringa on the morning of August 25th. We had a sleep in and didn’t get underway till about 11.00 am. Because of the wind direction we elected to give the anchorages on Dragonera Island a miss and headed to San Telmo instead. It would be revisiting old ground for us but Marc hadn’t been there and we knew it should be well protected from the north easterlies that were forecast.
Conditions were a little light but we were able to sail all the way. We started with a nice downwind reach out to sea then square run wing on wing with the cruising chute.  The wind got very light and fluky for quite a while but we were still making acceptable speed so we stuck with the set up. The autopilot got a rest as we hand steered all the way. It was actually great fun helming the boat to get the most out of every little bit of breeze. We didn’t actually expect to make it all the way to the strait between Mallorca and Dragonera Island without tacking back out to sea but as we approached the coastal cliffs the wind veered in our favour and we sailed directly into the passage. It also got squeezed so strengthened quickly from under 10 knots right up to near 20 knots. This had us right on the limit of our cruising chute and had us flying along.
We covered the 21.1 nautical mile trip to San Telmo with an average speed of 4.5 knots and reached 8 knots during the sleigh ride through the strait. It really was a very enjoyable sail.
Asymetrical chute out to starboard, mainsail to port and three happy
meerkats afloat in the middle.

 We anchored close in to the beach in what is the most protected corner of the bay but unfortunately after having spent five very peaceful nights in this anchorage while Marc was away, this time a big swell rolled into the bay making the boat roll uncomfortably most of the night. Rob was also up for a couple of hours securing everything on deck and keeping an eye on a huge electrical storm hovering just out to sea. Luckily it bypassed us.
Alcheringa at anchor off San Telmo

Marc stayed onboard all day on Sunday reading while we went ashore for a while, strolled around the very pleasant town and picked up some really nice fresh baked baguettes. With some swell still rolling around the point, launching the dingy back off the beach was a bit challenging. We tried to time our run between waves but sure enough the sea wasn’t going to co-operate and we got well and truly drenched as a small breaker rolled over the bow. With no thought for self preservation, Karen heroically managed to save the bread though.
San Telmo - Mallorca

On Monday we spent another lazy day in San Telmo. Rob got some more blogging done as he’s been trying hard to catch up. We’ve been so busy actually doing things he hasn’t been able to find the time to write about doing those things and all of a sudden we found the blog nearly three months behind. He was keen to finish the story of our passage from Gibraltar to England on Curious. It had happened so long ago back in early June that he actually thought it would be fairly short. However once we started to go through the photos of the trip and recall all the great things that happened along the way it ended up longest chapter yet at 6,500 words with over 70 photos.

We all did make a trip ashore for a local lunch and for Marc to see the town though because we were going to be moving on again in the morning.

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