We were faced with the choice of leaving Madeira with a good northerly wind, but the probability of a 3-4m swell, or waiting until the seas calmed down to a reasonable level but risking a windless passage. We chose the latter, delaying another day. We’d enjoyed getting to know Ed and his daughter Heather on Aardvarc, an Arcona 40 they were basing in Madeira for a while, and he kindly gave me a lift to the local garage where I invested in two extra jerry cans of diesel, which were to prove invaluable.
|Sunset, last night out|
We’d thought about sailing straight to Tenerife (the western Canaries are greener and sound more interesting), but Cain and April emailed us from Graciosa and it sounded wonderful – particularly as we wanted to spend some time at anchor. Graciosa is a tiny island across a narrow strait separating it from Lanzarote, and is meant to be one of the best anchorages in the whole of the Canaries. We’d been slightly put off by permit requirements: you’re meant to apply for an anchoring permit at least ten working days in advance of arrival, with exact dates, and the process for booking a berth in the nearby marina was just as unworkable, involving faxing through several documents with apparently little chance of hearing whether you’d been successful. Fortunately, it sounded as if no-one was checking!