All in Photography

Reflections and random thoughts...

V has raised a number questions about the voyage and the ship and I have received other questions from readers and friends; I plan to do a post in the next couple of days to try and answer as many of these as I can. In the meantime I thought I’d jot down some of the interesting incidents/experiences of the last couple of weeks.

Flying fish really do fly or at least glide. I’m sure everyone already knows this but it was truly facinating and amazing to see them actually do it…

Arriving in the Azores!

When last heard from, we were approaching the Azores but unsure, with wind and weather, when we would arrive. The seas had been relatively calm and the winds, while helpful, were somewhat low so that it did not appear as if we would get to Porta Delga in the Azores until sometime on Saturday, 3 days later than our scheduled arrival. I called V on my satellite phone to let her know and promised to get back in touch if there was a change.

Later that Wednesday afternoon, 16 days out of Bermuda, the winds picked up, the swells grew…

At sea - Week 2

Week 2 was considerably easier than week 1. During the first week we had reduced sail as the winds increased, removing the top sails, taking down the outer jib which was putting an immense strain on the masts and rigging and reefing the main and fore sails. Even so we were sometimes making 8-9 knots and in the first 4 days we covered 650 nautical miles. Had the winds continued and had they been pushing us in the right direction we could have made the crossing in 12 days instead of the 18 days that it eventually took.

After our first week of sailing the winds dropped significantly over the course of one night…

Last day in port!

This is perforce a brief post, as we will be leaving the dock shortly. Water pump has not yet arrived but seemingly it’s on the island, and as I understand it, we will leave as soon as it’s delivered and make the repairs while underway. At the moment the fuel tanker is alongside and filling the bunkers so within the next couple of hours we will be off.

Yesterday was a make and mend day, cleaning up and making ready for sea. I posted the blog, wandered into town for lunch, and took it relatively easy. Not much to report, everyone is impatient to be off and we still have about 2,000 nautical miles to cover to get to the Azores so every day in port is cutting into our scheduled arrival date, but with favourable winds we should be ok….

Bermuda to the Azores!

It’s been a while!

The last time I posted I had just arrived in Ullapool, Scotland after sailing from Iceland via the Faroes, the Shetlands and the Orkneys. I had planned to journal our photo expedition through Skye and the Western Highlands but the days were too full and there never seemed to be enough time. I heard from a number of you who were unhappy that the blog just stopped so abruptly. Aplogies, I’ve given myself a stern talking to and will try to do better next time.

And what better time to start than now… at the moment I’m in Bermuda at the St George’s Club where I stayed last night and am looking down to the foot of the hill, on the top of which the Club is located, where I can see my next sailing ship, the Blue Clipper, waiting for me to board…

Out of the Orkneys, Into Ullapool, Sept. 23

If you remember from my last post we are in Kirkwall, Orkneys for two nights to wait out a gale. Weather intermittent sun and rain but the wind blew hard from the south for the entire time and since we were on the northern side of our dock we were being blown away from our mooring, well that we had doubled our mooring lines.

One advantage of being moored for two days was the opportunity to find the town’s laundromat and clean up a 2 week accumulation, bliss…

Shetlands to the Orkneys, Tuesday Sept. 18

uesday afternoon and we’re moored at the dock in Kirkwall, Orkneys and battoned down tight with extra lines at the bow and stern. Tell you why in a second.

We spent Sunday in Lerwick, a cold, wet day with nothing open. I had looked forward to finding a laundromat and getting my two week backlog washed and dried and on doing a Google Maps search discovered that while there was only one laundromat to serve the town, nonetheless there was a laundromat. I took a taxi from the docks with my bag of laundry, making sure to keep the taxi window open! and arrived at my destination only to discover that it was closed on Sundays…