Saturday, 28 August 2010

Seixal near Lisbon

At anchor now in the River Judeu about 5 mls from Lisbon, off Seixal town. Steaming hot – 35 deg one day, but very few mozzies I’m glad to say. I’ve been doing maintenance, some deck welding and painting, for 10 days now.

There's a good boatyard at Amora just across the river from Seixal - run by the Vanancios family, nice people.

The buoyed channel to the boatyard has 2m+ at CD. There's a lot more water in this estuary than my e-charts indicate - I bought the latest Portuguese paper chart - it's got more water ;-)

So, we will haul out and do Blue Hound's underwater's 18 months since I looked at her bottom in St Sampson (Guernsey).

Plenty of wildlife - herons, egrets, terns and some small petrel-like birds that I haven't been able to identify. Fish galore, though being an estuary the water isn't that clear.

I like Alcantara dock in Lisbon, but mooring charges have gone up annually by 7% for the last 5 years, and the facilities are no better (and it seems to be noisier). There is now a Pingo Doce supermarket within 10 mins walk and they've got Twinings English Breakfast tea! The nearby laundry has disappeared and there is no wifi - important for those of us who try to work from the boat. I got a Vodaphone Portugal dongle for 40 Euros with 10 hrs incluido. Valid for 6 months and rechargeable at 5 euros for 5 hours. So, I'm writing this at anchor!

Seixal town is typical old Portugal - I had a churrasqunio barbeque lunch in the street yesterday - a lovely little town and plenty of live music; even a small popular beach. Ferry to Lisbon 15 mins.

The estuary is very reminiscent of Brazil - here's a couple of shots, one of the full moon rising over the town at dusk this week, and an evening view across to the Tagus Bridge and Cristo Rei monument:

Friday, 13 August 2010

Lisbon at last!

We finally got here after 9 days sailing close hauled (well, as close as a schooner will sail). 748 miles great circle, we logged 1026 miles over the ground. Only a couple of tough days with big awkward seas and F6, and less than 24 hours under engine. Still you have to count your blessings, the French guys on the aluminium boat next to us hit a container at 8 knots and lost both their ballasted dagger boards - they were unstable in 10 m seas and 40 knots of wind accompanied by a warship for 2 days.....Here's a chart of our track from Sao Miguel to Lisbon...