Our sailing holiday is coming to an end for this year, as we moor up the boat at its final port of call for this year, in Almerimar. We set sail from Gurrucha on Tuesday 26th August heading for the pretty bay of San Jose about 6 hours away, the forecast was Variable 2 then becoming SE3, with a very calm evening forecast perfect we thought to anchor. However, the journey started well with a gentle wind and the sea was a mill pond as you will see from the fisherman picture below the calm of the morning, but a couple of hours later we had significant swell and winds up to 25 knots, but it was on the nose, making it a bumpy journey and the swell slows you down.
As we reached San Jose bay, the bay was protected from the swell but the winds were still a factor although less, we decided as the forecast was so wrong we would not take the chance so we headed out again into the bumpy sea’s to Hudson’s horror. Hudson does not like it when you get the sea swell and it is bump, bump, bump. On route we found the most isolated house if anyone fancies it and an empty illegal hotel, the pilot book says it was built without permission so they can not open it – what a waste.
So another very long 6 hours later we sailed into Almerimar, tired and a bit wet (sea spray, not rain). We had a very friendly welcome from Keith from Spirit 3 inviting us for a beer and Alice cooked us up a great and very much appreciated dinner; a nice way to spend our first evening.
So now the tasks start, with work being done to winterise the boat, repairs being booked in for the foresail and spray hood and desperately searching for a crate for Hudson to fly home, (not easy in Spain). The challenge now is to get the jobs done but still remember to enjoy the last few days, visit the beach and relax. It has been especially hot the last two days with no wind (typical no wind when we want it), it will be nice to have a cooler breeze, but I do like the sun and after a week back home will wish we had the heat again as I add layers of clothing to keep warm . Hudson I think is excited to go home so he can run free in the fields. By chance I found that Almeria (40 miles away by car) has a festival week and each evening they have bull fights & horse performances, so we have booked our tickets for tomorrow evening (Saturday 30th Aug) the final performance. I know it is not everyone’s cup of tea and i am not sure if it is mine, but it’s traditional in Spain and it is on my list of Spanish experiences.
We are told Almerimar marina has a good winter community here, as many people leave their boats here like us, but also many live on their boats here all winter. We have friends Tina and Tim from Shiraz living here all winter so they will keep and eye on our boat and Keith, Alice and Joe are also staying till October then heading off. So when we visit in November it will be nice to catch up again with our cruising friends.
We are here until 4th September; when the big journey home starts. It has been a great four months and we have seen Portugal and Spain and have enjoyed many elements and learnt a lot ready for next years trip, in our minds we have divided the trip into four main sections:-
- English coast – Hamble to Plymouth
- Bay of Biscay
- Portugal coast with the ARC
We will spend time over the winter planning next years trip.