Lindisfarne – Forgus 37 – 7,5t (over 9t fully equipped)
Sweden to Portugal
Start May 1 – 2005
A long term adventure with the intention to go on sailing for two to ten years.
If only two years – then we just made it to the Caribbean and back.
If longer it meant that we will enter the Pacific Ocean and having done that, everything will take more than two years…
Already this first year we learnt early to have a plan B, if plan A didn’t work.
First goal was to go up to 70 degrees north in Norway, and that we did. A long and very nice coast with a lot to see. The Norwegian west coast is among the most beautiful places on earth.
The original plan was to go to Newfoundland via Iceland and Greenland and further along the American east coast all the way down to Patagonia.
But only 100 nm from Iceland we had strong headwind that both increased to strong gale and turned into an unfavourable direction.
Plan B was easy and fast to invent… Just turn to port and then go downwind to the Faeroe Islands. 140 nm to south east. The wind increased even more and we were flying towards the northernmost harbour in 50+ knots of wind. Luckily we had been there before so no drama even if we would arrive in the dark and stormy conditions.
It was now in the beginning of August and this plan B took us from Faeroe Islands, south along Scotland Hebrides, Ireland, France, Spain and Portugal. So instead of stopping in the Caribbean in late December we ended up in southern Portugal…
The recommendation is to cross the Biscay before mid September, which we managed without rushing through the countries along the way. As we had visited Scotland before but not Ireland we did only make short stops along the way. Ireland is definitely worth a longer visit from what we saw.
As we are a little late to have easy summer weather for the crossing we had to check the weather reports all the time and one day everything looked good for Biscay, so we left from the Scilly Islands to go to northern Spain.
But again the winds changed and made us go to France instead. A non predicted low developed fast and for us it was easy to change course which meant we had a nice stop in France shopping bread, cheese and wine…
A couple of days later we set of for the 300nm crossing of the Biscay. Everything went well and we did some stops along the Spanish coast before checking in to Portugal.
By this time we still haven’t made up our minds if we would continue across the Atlantic, or simply stay in Portugal or Spain for the winter.
We were in time for the crossing but why hurry…
Portugal had many very nice deep bays and the medieval town and fishing villages are very nice. As we came all the way down to the south of Portugal and found the beautiful Algarve coast we also found the very nice marina in Lagos.
We had heard about it and it really felt like coming home to the friendly live aboard cruisers and the well maintained marina. On top of that a nice area for walking, biking and the little town is very picturesque.
Suddenly we had a slip for six months…
Total for 2005:
4650 nm – 8 months
Year 1998-2005 = 24 710 nm
See – Album – some pictures from 2005
Annika & Björn