Tuesday, 3 September 2013

SAIL TO DIEGO SUEREZ,MADAGASCAR,Sept2013

Brisk sailing up N E coast of Madagascar.332 nm.left sat am,arrived mon pm,best day was 157nm,fast for us.
saw lots of whales in first 2 hours,sailing between ile de sainte marie and mainland
then out into open seas.the wind and swell gradually increased.by the last day we had 18-20 knots,gusting to 25,with 2-3 metre swellInitially cloud and rain,then sunny.nice moon after 0230.
.with 50 nm to go we were doing 9 knots on a wave when a whale appeared about 25 metres from us!going the other way-glad we didn't collide
for lunches we had big bowls of hot noodle soup,with additions like tomato,cabbage,tuna.for dinners we had a bowl of Zebu stew,with various added vegetables.more tiring than other recent passages,due to conditions,so adhered to our 4 hour watches,and slept so soundly when off night watches.
daily sked at 0800 and 1800 with green ghost and tegan 1.
late mon afternoon we turned towards diego suerez bay entrance,riding in on big swell ,with brisk wind.large bay,20x20km.past an old fort,old military ruins,orange cliffs on other side lit up by sun.so nice to finally be here.saw boat masts near town,so started crossing the bay.then we got 26 knots,afternoon land breeze onto tradewinds,but no swell,so a nice d=fast sail to the finnish line.
dropped anchor just off town,just on sunset,just out of wind.
celebratory drink,final zebu stew,and early bed.
another indian ocean passage safely completed.just the 20nm to get over the top of Madagascar.that part is always more wind and swell.conditions look best next Thursday or Friday.
so time to rest,and to explore Diego Suerez

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