Tuesday 6th of August
Departure from Fishguard at 8 AM. Arrival at Aberystwyth at 7 PM. Conditions: very weak south west wind; full sun most of the day. Distance: 35 NM.
Today's sail felt like a typical July day in the mediterranean - no wind, flat seas, hot sun. Not what any of us expected to find in Wales!!! We left early to benefit from favorable currents that lasted about 3 hours, and then stopped for lunch to wait while unfavorable currents set in. We anchored off a little island, and several seals, clearly local, came to check out the new visitors. Can't say they are particularly fearless, staying healthy distances from us, but it was terrific to see their heads pop out of the water in different places around the boat.
Taken from the mast
Following the birds episode of 2 nights ago, I had Richard and Marco pull me up the mast, to survey the damage and pull down one of the halyards. The VHF antenna I managed to put straight again, the wind vane I'm going to need to totally replace, and the electronic wind speed sensor should be OK.
View from the top of the mast
After lunch we attempted to sail against the current achieving top speeds of 1.5 knots. After about 1 hour, decided to put our ever faithful diesel in gear, and motor ahead... again!
For the past 2-3 days we have started to see many porpoises. The first thing I'm learning about them is they are much more timid than dolphins. It's been hard to get a picture of any of them, and the ones I have gotten have been aren't too great. They are basically a little smaller than dolphins, have practically no beak, and seem darker skinned. Although I've not been able to have a good look at one from up close, it is still a pleasure to see them arch their backs as they surface to get some air.
Tomorrow we are taking a day off sailing, going to the "alternative technology center" and going to visit Portmeiron, the site of the filming of "The Prisoner" series. I've never seen any episodes, but my crew can hardly contain their excitement!!!