One year on Chip-Chip in pictures

On the 1stof July, it was one year since we left Bremerhaven early in the morning, and set course for the Netherlands, the Mediterranean, West Africa, Brazil and finally, French Guiana. A whole year of living four people in a 28-foot boat. We have sailed 9220 nautical miles in that year and visited places, which we never dreamt it was possible to reach with our little boat. Below is a short summary of the year in pictures. Continue reading

From Brazil to French Guiana; our longest passage yet

After leaving the Cabanga Yacht Club in Recife, Brazil, we had some of the fastest days of sailing we have ever had. We were pushed along the north coast of Brazil by a combination of winds and currents going in the same direction as us, and after 5 days of sailing we were celebrating being halfway to French Guiana. We, of course, were already looking forward to arriving five days later. By then, we were passing the delta of the Amazon River, and soon the winds became weaker, current seemed to be confused, and our speed dropped considerably. Bye, bye early arrival.

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Esben takes out a reef in the main to speed up a bit

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Preparing for seasickness and passage

When meeting other sailors, we’re often asked if we never get seasick. We have done quite a few longer passages since we left the Canaries, and people assume that we must be hardcore sailors. But in reality, Runa and Esben suffer horribly from seasickness during the first couple of days of sailing. When it’s really bad, Esben throws up every 15 minutes. Mattis and I don’t get it as badly as the others, but we also do get seasick sometimes. So seasickness is something we have to take into consideration when preparing for a passage.

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A rough sail from Salvador to Recife

We arrived back in the anchorage by Itaparica just before sunset, but as we went to turn off the engine, the handle came off. So quickly, before the light completely disappeared, Esben had to open the hatch to the motor, stick his head down in the darkness, and figure out where the line that cut off the diesel supply was located on the engine. After a quick look around, he found the right one, and silence fell over the anchorage. Continue reading

Morro de São Paulo; the southernmost point of our trip

After coming back to Salvador from the awesome Chapada Diamantina National Parc, we decided to make the most of the rented car, and arranged a day trip to the turtle sanctuary TAMAR up the coast. TAMAR claims to help the turtles having a better life, but to us in mainly looked like they helped the Brazilians get some understanding that the turtles need protection – and more importantly, help them get a good selfie. Continue reading

Of anchoring and diamonds

Before heading back to Salvador, we wanted to take a little tour further into the Baia de Todos os Santos (or the All Saints Bay). There never seems to be any wind around here, and we slowly motored the short way to the next anchorage by Ilha de Bom Jesus, which had been recommended to us by other sailors. It was a nice and calm little anchorage, good for swimming, just like the anchorage by Itaparica. Continue reading

Back to life at anchor in Itaparica

Amongst cruisers, one of the most famous anchorages in Brazil is the one by Itaparica. It’s located in the big bay behind the city of Salvador, and is very protected and very pretty. From the marina in Salvador, it was only 12 NM, so even though there was hardly any wind on the day we decided to cross over there, we got out the sails, and slowly sailed off. The little trip ended up taking the whole afternoon, and we arrived in the mooring field just before sunset, in company with a French boat we had met in Salvador. Continue reading

Convents and churches in Salvador, Brazil

We had a 4-day sail ahead of us when we left Maragogi to head for Salvador. The weather had picked up since we arrived, and we were a bit worried when we came to the shallow part of the reef. But everything was fine, and soon we were out in the deeper water again. The wind wasn’t cooperating, and we were sailing close hauled for the first couple of days. This meant that the sailing was rather unpleasant, and that Runa got seasick again, unfortunately. Continue reading

Yes, you can anchor on the north-east coast of Brazil

For safety reasons, we had been a bit apprehensive about anchoring on our way down south to Salvador, but after talking to Theresa, an experienced sailor from Recife, we headed towards Suape. Suape is a commercial harbor located 20NM south of Recife, and next to it you can anchor behind the reef. We ended up arriving in the dark, because we had to wait for the high tide to leave the marina. The water shallows very quickly behind the reef, and it wasn’t that great as we didn’t know the place at all. Continue reading

Lazy days in Recife

We ended up staying in Recife for almost two weeks. The boat was cleaned up after the Atlantic crossing, and a big load of laundry was sent off to be cleaned. One of the workmen in Cabanga’s boatyard came and offered his services – he managed to get a rigging peace we needed, and his wife did laundry, for a fair price. So that was handy for us.

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