Leaving Madeira – 300nm to the Canaries

November 22 – November 24, 2019; 2692 nm and 247 days after departure from La Rochelle

Well, after having enjoyed the Madeira archipelagos for nearly two month it was time to head on. We had the permit in our pocket to stay for up to 2 days at the Selvagem Grande Island. It belongs to Portugal and is pretty much 180 nm south of Madeira in the middle of the Ocean.

our route from Madeira to the Canaries via Selvagem
(the island is where our route makes the slight turn to the east)

We were exited to explore this inhabited (except of a few rangers) very tiny nature-sanctuary. It’s a small rocky islands with steep cliffs, except at one point where you have the chance to anchor in settled conditions.

Passing Selvagem Grande at the east side

We arrived in the afternoon after around 33 hours of sailing but the anchorage was VERY small. The heavy swell caused breaking waves at all the shallow patches scattered across the approach to the anchorage. Although we had low water at that time some waves even went over the reef causing a very “lively” state at the anchorage. The rangers were so kind and offered us to use the buoy instead of anchoring but we didn’t feel comfortable at all.

distance to the shore being at the buoy…scary close

Though we decided to continue our journey and go for the remaining 140nm to La Graciosa right away, which is another nature-sanctuary island at the north-east tip of Lanzarote/Canaries.

Just as we came back into deeper waters we got a glimpse on a whale with a kid. At least we got the below picture and if somebody can determine what kind of whale this was, just let us know. Our bet is that it was a Bryde’s whale.
Yeah, we need to work on our photographic skills but that was the best shot we could get.

What kind of whale is this?

Another magic night at sea, something you can hardly imagine without having it experienced by yourself. Just try to picture, we had 15-25 knots of wind mostly on the beam or slightly from the front, boat speed of 6-7knots which is nearly max speed of Altimate (7.6 knots), 2.0 to 2.5 m waves, pitch dark as there was no moon that night, comfortable temperatures of around 20 degrees celsius and a MIND BLOWING starry sky. Capitana remembered the expression “Himmelszelt” out of the tales her grandma used to tell.  Basically it means that you see stars from one horizon to the other in all cardinal points and this is what you see being in the middle of the ocean at night. As said, it’s magic.

And then, as our hope of catching a fish has been nearly diminished to zero, we caught a wonderful Gold Mackerel/Mahi-Mahi/Dorade. It was the right size for a two person dinner which we enjoyed after having dropped the anchor in front of Playa Francesca/La Graciosa.  

yummy !

Late afternoon the next day we arrived and were happy to see our friends from SY Monte being there too..

Finally arrived after 300nm and 56 hours of sailing

2 thoughts on “Leaving Madeira – 300nm to the Canaries

  1. Hallo ihr Lieben, ich denke es ist vielleicht ein Pilotwal oder auch Grindwal. So schön von euch zu lesen, dass ihr sie sehen durftet. Vielleicht haben wir ja auch noch einmal dieses Glück. Werden morgen wahrscheinlich starten und vor Rubicon ankern. Seid ihr schon da?
    Liebe Grüße Von Stefan und Ricarda


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