We made it
Posted by yachtcamomile
We have arrived in Richards Bay, South Africa, wahoo!
Our position is
Our 24 hours up to 10.00 today was 162 miles.
The whole journey was 1188 miles in 8 days 13 hours or 205 hours giving an average speed of 5.8kts. Really pleased with that.
Yesterday we sailed with 2 reefs in the main and the genny poled out to stop it slatting. We had F4 most of the day from the north east with the wind increasing during the evening to F5 but again from the north east so all good. The current was giving us an extra knot or two and our boat speed was 7 – 9 kts most of the day.
Last night was very dark and black without the moon and with the added worry of squall clouds. Bill took the early evening watch as the wind was forecast to increase and he experienced several 35kt gusts, although from the north east, with a bit of thunder and lightening in the distance but by 03.00 the wind died completely, as forecast, and the engine went on. It was very important we kept our speed up because the forecast showed a southerly creeping up the coast although it wasn’t due until after midnight but we wanted to arrive in daylight.
While on the early watch this morning at 07.00 the wind generator suddenly sprang into life and the wind anemometer spun round to the south. Sam had told us of this yesterday so we were waiting for it. Fortunately it didn’t go higher than about 10 knots and only for about 3 or 4 hours but in that time the sea started to mount. I changed course slightly and all was ok but I wouldn’t have wanted the wind to go up to 20 or 30 kts. The engine stayed on all day even though the wind backed to the north east later.
I went for a sleep mid morning and when I got up at midday the land was within sight. The smells that come off the land after you’ve been at sea for 8 days are interesting; here it was coal dust (big mining area). We spent the rest of the day motoring down the coast and arrived at the marina at 18.30 which was 17.30 south African time, after calling the harbour port control on vhf 12 to ask for permission to enter. The pontoons at Tuzigazi marina are in a bit of a state and I think we’ll just stay here long enough to check in and go round to the Zuluyacht club.
The next couple of days will be taken up with checking in with immigration (passports stamped), customs and maybe the harbour master, (each country varies), sorting out sim cards for the phones, cleaning the boat inside and out, washing, and restocking our food cupboards and the fridge. Once we’ve got internet I’ll add some photos to the blogs.
So we are in South Africa, WOW. Bring on Hluhluwe-iMfolozi wildlife park and game reserve, the hippos at iSimangaliso wetland park, Knysa harbour, Cape Town and maybe the Kruger national park with James and Hailey at Christmas to name but a few of the sites here.