Ascension Island to Fernando de Noronha (Brazil)…..Day 6.7

Ascension Island to Fernando de Noronha (Brazil)…..Day 6.7

June 28th, written from the anchorage on June 29th, 2013 (Western Hemisphere) Time: -2 on GMT

Yesterday morning, we set the full main and genoa on a port tack beam/broad reach. The wind predictions were from the NE, but a few hours later, the rains
came constantly all day and the winds went to the NW!!! That made us very close hauled, but laying the island. Eventually, the winds actually went WEST and we had to
motor through those areas. The swell was from three directions (shades of the Indian Ocean), but we knew it would be a short lived and local phenomenon.

We approached the island around mid night and fortunately, the skies we\’re clearing, the wind down to 3 knots and the swell quite comfortable.

This island is a National Marine Park of Brazil and as such, there is only one place on the island we\’re allowed to anchor. San Antonio Bay is actually a pretty little spot and reminds me of a Yasawa Island in shape and size like we found in Fiji as well as the spires of Ua Pou in the Marquesas. Add a little Kelefesia from Tonga and you have….Fernando de Noronha.

\”This Side Up\” arrived the day before we did and did some engine and traveler repairs. Despite a light air prediction, they headed out for Forteleza this morning which should be a three day, two night sail. We\’re anxious to hear about their experience as the marina there has \”mixed reviews\” to say the least.

It is Saturday here and we hope what we\’ve found is the exception rather than the rule. There are 15 party boats out. Some playing music that is so bad and so loud a 13 year old would cringe. The speaker system sounds like something out of the 1930\’s and I have no idea how the tourists aboard can tolerate it. It is giving me a pounding headache and I\’m 100 yards away. No one aboard could possibly carry on a conversation. We shall see…hopefully, it\’s a Saturday affair.

We\’ve also noted that fireworks, even in the middle of the day are shot off near their small marina. Again, we have no idea why? It\’s not a visual delight and the noise is….well, just that – noise.

The reputation of this island is \”Eco Tourism\” at it\’s finest and we can certainly see why that should be. There are apparently some world class white sand beaches here and at Isla Rata, one of the supposed world\’s finest surfing spots. I doubt there would ever be a crowd at the break, that\’s for sure. This entire island is only 5 1/2 miles long and at most 2 miles wide. The water is 80 deg F (27 deg C) and the air is 87 deg F (29 deg C). We\’re only 200 miles south of the Equator. We\’ll cross the Equator after we leave Forteleza.

We got a pretty good nights sleep and we\’ll try and go ashore later this afternoon.
Don\’t be strangers and drop us a note!
More from Fernando as we discover…
Final Stats: 1237 miles sailed on a Rhumb Line of 1100 miles. We averaged 7.75 knots for the sailed mileage. The trip took 6 days 14 hours. And remember, \”Your mileage may vary\”….:-)
Scott and Nikki