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10 November 2000 Amfi, Gran Canaria, Spain

I sailed about 50 miles down to Amfi and my new Windpilot did the steering the whole distance. It is about as easy as it gets. No hassle whatsoever.

12 November 2000 Arguineguin, Gran Canaria, Spain

In Arguineguín, I once again met up with Jens. We spent a few glorious days, also in the company of an Englishman. We had rissoles at a Danish restaurant and actually acted like "tourists" for a couple of days, going to nightclubs and pubs, lying on the beach, etc. But afterwards, we both had had enough. All tourists to Gran Canaria are down here on the southern part of the island because of the much better climate. Here everything revolves around tourism.

Guess my lunch has gone up in smoke               Lunch while in port

Guess my lunch has gone up in smoke     Lunch in port


Jens and I were in the water. Together we cleaned the hulls of our boats.

On November 16, 2000 I was on my way to Cap Verde - a trip of 850 nautical miles that should be around seven days, given I could get a reasonable wind. I got more than what I asked for. It would turn out to be my most uncomfortable cruise so far. I had constant winds of Beaufort Force 6-7. An extraordinarily unsteady sea tossed little Trojka around the whole time.

I just love my new Windpilot. I let it steer from just outside the port at Gran Canaria and turned it off six days later when calling at São Vicente. It was steering the whole time. Completely hassle-free and without interruption. I only touched it on two occasions because the wind had changed a bit, and I'm more than happy with it. With the Ullermatic, I think I most likely would have sailed to the coast of Africa and taken the train home. I simply wouldn't have had the energy to struggle with the steering.

During the six days, I had rice on two occasions. The rest of the time I lived off of biscuits and bread. I was hopping and bobbing so hard, it was impossible and dangerous to boil water. It was something of an achievement (just) to make a sandwich. You have to hold on to EVERYTHING. Still, something fell to the floor. Half a sandwich with liver sausage was stuck on the wall somewhere and I couldn't find it!!!

On my birthday, November 19, I received an unexpected birthday present. The whole day red sand poured down, when I passed by the (coast of the) Sahara.

I heard of many (people with) broken booms, torn mainsails and broken backstays, while listening to Gary's SSB channel. Louis lost his genoa when his tracing line snapped, his generator broke down and his motor suspension broke.

I don't own a SSB radio. Just a small Sony world receiver, so I'm only able to listen in. Many check in. By giving their positions, they receive weather reports and good advice in return. Maybe they have to change course to find better wind or to avoid inclement weather. I use it a lot, and during my next crossing I will be listening in on(/to) Herb's channel, which covers this specific part of the Atlantic. There are lots of similar channels available, and they are run completely unpaid by radio amateurs. Or (like) in Gary's case, sailors themselves.

During the journey, I experienced a minor leak. This resulted in nearly a litre of water the first night. Maybe that does not sound like much. But when it ends up right in your bed, believe me, it is enough. For the rest of the journey I had to sleep on the floor with cushions and a blanket, due to a soaking wet mattress, sleeping quilt, etc. And the water just kept coming. Big waves travelled all across the deck. A problem I will have to look into when I reach Cap Verde.
I tried leaving the matress out to dry(/air drying the matress), but had big waves astern...

I tried to leave the mattress out to dry, but had big waves astern


This photo is taken a few seconds before I ran inside and was hit by a giant wave.

To Page 26

From Esbjerg, Denmark to Tahiti aboard a Junker 22