The passage to Faial was rather un eventful, cold however, and demanding as far as hand steering was concerned. We left Flores late morning, to arrive 24 hours later in Faial.
We had a close encounter with a large whale, swimming in the opposite direction… beautiful, but kind of scary at the same time.
In Faial we anchored in the busy protected port of Horta, and officially cleared in, customs, immigration etc etc. We are now in Europe.
Here contacted the Raymarine representative/tec guy, and he confirmed my darkest expectation: the built in computer of the auto pilot: bust, kaput end of story. Immediately I ordered a new one, only to be picked up and installed in Lisbon. This meant another 900 Nm hand steering.
We explored the island (rented a car) for a day: pretty, but cold and mist…and wind…
A lot of wind actually, even gusting through the anchorage… And at one evening, when returning back to SV Onda Boa, we noticed several people on board, engines running etc… What happened was that somebody had anchored ontop of our anchor chain, and with the gusts of wind his boat started dragging anchor and also our anchor… Anyway quiet an ordeal, because the guy went with his dinghy to Onda Boa, he climbed on board, found my secondary anchor (Fortress with plenty of line) and he wanted to place the second anchor. During the gust wind and wave action, he must have miscalculated and, so the story goes, his dinghy flipped over, and fell in the water smashing his head on the anchor: hospital and stitches… The guys on the Onda Boa, when we arrived ,were French sailors from another Catamaran, and so they knew what they were doing (lucky us). Anyway, we had to find a new anchoring place, but pitch dark, crowded anchorage and stiff gusts of wind, made us decide to move to the opposite side of the harbor and tie up on the big old concrete wall.
I couldn’t locate the unlucky sailor, but I trust he recovered well. We checked out, and left for the 900 nm to Lisbon.
Cold strong winds where awaiting us… long hours on the steering wheel.. and thanks to Steve Jobs/Apple for creating the iPod….