Log Tecla - Getting form Port Louis to Stanley without engine!
We left Port Louis this Saturday morning and sailed to Stanley without use of engine. We left our anchorage under sail by setting the mainsail and mizzen sail halfway, getting out the anchor to where it just held and then setting the forestaysail aback at the right moment to swing over portside, set all sails and sail out of the Berkeley sound down wind.
It was a beautiful morning and afternoon. The wind was strong and sometimes came down gusting from one of the hills, but we had a storm rig on, so no problem. Berkeley sound is a beautiful piece of the Falkland Islands. All of us on board have tried to compare it to some part of the world we know better. Mostly it looks like Scotland, but not the inner Hebrides, its not green enough, no trees! It seems more like somewhere between the Orkneys and the Shetland Islands. It is quite low, except for one really high mountain in the middle of the East Island. It is very rough, patches of tough grass are alternated by patches of grey stone. All that grows is low and stays at ground level. The earth is at times black and the creeks are filled with brown peaty water. It all fits the look of desolation and rough weather they get here.
We sailed passed some seals, saw a lot of birds and swimming penguins and then we got out of the sound and had to get to work. We had to tack our way back into Port William and Stanley harbour. It took us ten tacks. Ten well organized tacks with a crew that has sailed downwind for almost 5 weeks and has maybe tacked once before setting off today! But we did it! We made it all the way through the small entrance off Stanley harbour and had 4 of the 10 tacks in the harbour to get to our anchorage. We then passed the Oosterschelde, dropped the forestaysail, turned into the wind by pulling mizzen and mainsail all the way in the middle and dropped anchor as we drifted backwards! With the engine on standby just incase - it was a windy day and there is always the risk of a maneuver not working out the way we want it.. But the engine got turned off without it having had to work.
The Europa passed us as we tacked our way in, they are now moored on a pontoon, where we will join them later this day. We have a small party planned for our combined group of the 3 ships, to celebrate our arrival and rounding the Horn. Time for big stories!Read more