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Old 19-03-2014, 07:39   #46
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Re: azores 2014 how safe is it?

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Originally Posted by Boatguy30 View Post
I would be interested in hearing about the marinas and cruising in the azores. Possibly living aboard and working there for a few years. Perhaps that should be a different thread.
here are some of the guides that i have found with info about the islands.
the new marinas, have greatly improved the accesability of visiting the islands in recent years in my opinion,as in the past,open anchorages and commercial docks were the only option when visiting by yacht.

Horta Marina - Azores Superyacht Marina | Superyachts.com
Marina Lajes das Flores - Azores Superyacht Marina |...
Marina de Ponta Delgada - Azores Superyacht Marina |...
Vila do Porto Marina - Azores Superyacht Marina |...
Edited to add:
There is a municipal marina at Praia da Vitoria (near Lajes Field): Câmara Municipal da Praia da Vitória
Also on Terceira there is a marina at Angra do Heroismo: Marinas & Ports in Angra Marina

I might have missed a few!

Sailing Azores
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Old 19-03-2014, 07:50   #47
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Re: azores 2014 how safe is it?

a few thoughts -- we sail a jeanneau ds40 -- built 2000 launched 2003 - only boat we ever owned -- and as for experience before crossing we did the east coast of the usa 2 1/2 times then the western carib from mexico to colombia then across to jamaica down to trini and back to antigua -

and yes we got 2 person crossing insurance --

there are a few open anchorages but not many and a bit rough when the wind gets up -- the marnias are plentyful and not incredibly expensive and generally very nice

as for work in azores - first as an american you best check the schengren agreement - second the azores have fairly high unemployment so getting menial jobs may be an issue

but the only real thing that no seems to be pay attention to is the weather -- really really important - my admiral use to call me a weather freak as i was using 2-3 different models when we had internet in the carib plus chris parker - but after we decided to sit a couple of times and others moved on and got the crap kicked out of them she now appreciates my nerdeness -
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Old 19-03-2014, 08:17   #48
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Re: azores 2014 how safe is it?

Exhaustion is a funny thing: it may not be noticed until it's too late to control, because it is easily masked by other effects like the excitement of sailing off into the blue, drinking a lot of coffee, trouble with crew, weather, equipment etc.

Example: something breaks (engine doesn't start) and you decide to fix it. Now you have one crew left to sail the boat and you will probably spend a lot of time and energy into the repair. You may not notice, but the gap towards an exhausted crew is very close now.

12 hour workdays are tough on most. Sure it can be done, I did 16 hours when I ran my company. It was not beneficial to my health.

Making passage with two aboard is not impossible; we do it all the time; but you need to have an experienced team and a boat that's fixed and tweaked until it just works out well. This is very different from how many CF members are planning their first passage.

Let me put up another point: food and drink. One or two hot meals a day, plenty coffee, tea, snacks, energy bars etc. and fixed times for the meals. Meals are not Ramen noodles, those are snacks. The first days are going to be the hardest and we always prepare meals in advance which we freeze so that we can microwave them. Stews, chili, gumbo etc. all work very well for this. Have deserts, starters, use nice plates and tableware instead of eating out of cans. The importance of these things can be hard to grasp but with some passages behind you will be very clear. I know single handers that do 3-course meals with silver ware. It's what keeps them together mentally.

I am pro alcohol aboard: a (one) drink with the whole crew before dinner is very good for morale and the perfect moment for the captain to evaluate performance, do the pep talk etc. A (one or max. two) glass of wine with dinner is also okay with me and that is where I put the limit.
I find this so important that I like non-drinkers to participate, using Virgin Mary's etc. instead of a glass of water that can be had all day. This and the following meal must be a hi-light of the day.

Let me just go on with the next point: sleeping, showering etc. Every boat doing passages must have a shower. If the boat is small, use one of those bags you hang up on deck. Every crew member showers every day and while at it checks himself/herself for medical problems, like a cut or scrape that looks infected etc. It is very easy to get those small wounds on a passage and they are often neglected, which then leads to a bigger problem later on.

Note: I carry ORS (rehydration therapy, easiest to buy as sachets that are dissolved in a glass of water) aboard and need to replenish it regularly because I use it to help sailors that are badly dehydrated. Some even turn out to have ORS aboard themselves but just did not recognize the symptoms or realize that they were dehydrated. Sailing in tropical conditions is not a time to try out a diet without salt. We have a salty snack every day and drink plenty, plenty water. When a crew member gets diarrhea, ORS should be used, period. This can kill, don't mess with it: we have rushed people to hospital for it.

Navigation must be combined with weather routing: for this crossing (I never did it so would be nice if some of the veterans fall in here) you have the Azores high which, combined with the wish for a relaxed passage, tends to put boats too far south and without enough wind. This is where many of the "take more diesel" stories come from. Go north, find wind; wind is your friend; if it gets too rough, go back south a bit. Watch the weather fax, learn how to read those and take advantage of fronts, throughs, ridges etc. Learn about isobars and how they squeeze or expand and how that affects you. This will show you where optimal sailing is and you can adjust course to improve conditions.

cheers,
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Old 19-03-2014, 08:24   #49
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Re: azores 2014 how safe is it?

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Originally Posted by Boatguy30 View Post
Hey, your ID shows you as living in the azores, but then you mentioned just being their 5 weeks? I was just wondering the practicality of living board long term in the azores?

It appears American could get menial jobs, but at relatively high wages to cost of living on the Air Force base. But most yachting seems to be centered on the other island.
There is a municipal marina at Praia da Vitoria (near Lajes Field)
Câmara Municipal da Praia da Vitória
Also on Terceira there is a marina at Angra do Heroismo Marinas & Ports in Angra Marina

Horta and Ponta Delgada were the two best places we found for chandlers and repairs.
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Old 19-03-2014, 08:42   #50
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Re: azores 2014 how safe is it?

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Hey, your ID shows you as living in the azores, but then you mentioned just being their 5 weeks? I was just wondering the practicality of living board long term in the azores?

It appears American could get menial jobs, but at relatively high wages to cost of living on the Air Force base. But most yachting seems to be centered on the other island.
It does say location, and underneath only on the edit page, where you live. I live where the boat is since 2011. However, we maintain a residence in Canada and are here this winter for family reasons. I generally (as do a lot of other members) use this spot to denote where we are cruising. I should have changed it out when we left the Azores but internet access hard to get in Ireland without paying for it and forgot to change it.

We've anchored for a week in the little harbor just outside the airbase and rolley enough that for the first time in 2.5 years we put out a stern anchor. There is a nice enough marina there though but like all marinas in Europe pricey. Locally engaged staff at embassies and military bases especially at the lower levels, in my experience, are restricted to dependents whose sponsor is at station or on a remote posting and family remains on station and to local nationals. Just because you are American will not get you any thing in terms of employment. You would need to have some unique qualifications. There are some jobs available with the US gov overseas and you can check out what is required over at the USAjobs.gov website which allows you to search and filter by job and country. The hardest part about the website is setting the password.
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Old 19-03-2014, 08:52   #51
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Re: azores 2014 how safe is it?

Quote:
Originally Posted by LJH View Post
There is a municipal marina at Praia da Vitoria (near Lajes Field)
Câmara Municipal da Praia da Vitória
Also on Terceira there is a marina at Angra do Heroismo Marinas & Ports in Angra Marina

Horta and Ponta Delgada were the two best places we found for chandlers and repairs.
thanks i guess they are a bit small for superyachts,added to the list so it is in one place!


Horta Marina - Azores Superyacht Marina | Superyachts.com
Marina Lajes das Flores - Azores Superyacht Marina |...
Marina de Ponta Delgada - Azores Superyacht Marina |...
Vila do Porto Marina - Azores Superyacht Marina |...
Edited to add:
There is a municipal marina at Praia da Vitoria (near Lajes Field): Câmara Municipal da Praia da Vitória
Also on Terceira there is a marina at Angra do Heroismo: Marinas & Ports in Angra Marina

I might have missed a few!

Sailing Azores
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Old 19-03-2014, 11:13   #52
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Re: azores 2014 how safe is it?

Atoll and All,

Doing the crossing to the Azores is relatively an easy trip but has inherent dangers for those that are in "cruise mode". There are three things that must be in place to succeed without disaster resulting - and "luck" has nothing to do with it.

Firstly, the vessel, be it small or large, must be fully prepared for such a crossing. In this I include all systems fully checked and serviced, all sails in top condition and all mechanical systems fully surveyed and in pristine condition. Unfortunately, many owners get complacent when something is not 100% correct. I take one instance I came across - a boat had been sailing the Caribbean islands for a couple of years and when I took it over for delivery to the Med, I found a bit of play in the rudder. I asked the owner to have it repaired and was told it was not a problem as it had been like it was for years. I did my own inspection and found the pintles so worn that I was surprised they had not failed previously. The first frontal system we would have encountered, we would have waved the rudder goodbye - it most likely would have survived another couple of years of calm Caribbean conditions before failing. The point of this is that a person really needs to survey every single thing on the boat and ensure that everything is in "like new" condition. Likewise, check every electrical system and make sure there is no corrosion on terminals - if you do find some, replace the entire wire as there will most likely be wicking found inside the insulation – a failure looking for a time to happen.

Secondly, be able to track weather systems and know basic meteorology. When doing this crossing, it is imperative that the skipper keeps a good eye on the weather and realizes that those fronts will hit you, and at the most inconvenient times, if you cannot predict them properly. They can also make your passage a nightmare. Reduce sail well in advance of any expected heavy wind and always reduce sail at night. If you download GRIB files and you get a prediction of 25 knots up the bum, prepare for gusts of 45 knots. You will arrive in Horta with all your sails still intact. Also, have a long rode and chain available to act as a drogue. If your sailing has been in the Caribbean, where your “heavy weather” sailing may have consisted of high winds but seas of around 3 foot, you and your crew should be prepared for seas a lot bigger – sometimes swells of between 9 and 18 foot can be quite common and the crew must be psychologically prepared for this and be able to cope with handling the vessel in such conditions.

The last factor is very important and that is that the crew must be able to cope with cold and wet conditions, coupled with their watches – this means being outside monitoring. If you or your crew are not prepared to suffer the discomfort, you should not be out on the ocean doing this crossing. They must have sufficient warm and dry clothing to wear under good quality foul weather gear and be able to have sufficient rest between watches, coupled with good nourishment and sufficient liquid intake. Those prone to seasickness must be monitored and it made clear that rehydration has to take place. Remember too that your body is in perpetual motion during the trip. This means that your body is moving to counter the motion of the boat even in your sleep, which often results in early exhaustion. In my experience, most crew suffer from occasional severe nightmares during extended ocean passages and also constipation – take a good supply of laxatives with.

As a skipper/captain, have a watch roster posted near the nav area and make sure that the crew stick to it and get enough rest between watches. Sailing 3-up is comfortable and 4-up or more is luxury. In my experience, sailing 2-up is very stressful and tiring.

I have been to Horta a few times and it has a very pleasant atmosphere. I have also been to the marina at Ponta Delgada a few times. That is a massive marina and has a lot of high end restaurants. It caters for boats from bathtub size to super yachts to cruise liners. I prefer Horta, but then it depends where I am comming from - if from the west, Horta is the port but if from the south, then Ponta Delgada is the marina to go to. John.
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Old 19-03-2014, 12:20   #53
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So we've established a fair few points here; the boat must be ready and well equiped, there must be sufficient crew on board and they must be well rested. The supplies have to be well thought through and different sources of water have to be considered. Basic knowledge of tbe weather and a way to consult forecasts should be in place.

There is something missing in the list though, something that is also missed by pretty much all books and guides: experience. A lot of people that are doing this for the first time are really unsure of this aspect. When is one adequately experienced? When one or a couple of offshore passages have been made in experienced company? But then again circumstances might be really different when you're on your own. Sail in experienced company u.til you think you've pretty much seen it all? Not really realistic eh...

On the other side of the spectrum I read a lot of books/blogs and have talked to a fair few people that have embarked on their roundtrip Atlantic with pretty much no experience but a lot of theorethical knowledge, a solid preparation, the aid of a meteorologist and a lot of common sense.

What's your take on this aspect? I would like to make the trip next gear, and am confident about all the above comments, but lack the experience (like many in my marina that entertain such plans).
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Old 19-03-2014, 12:33   #54
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Re: azores 2014 how safe is it?

There are about a thousand plus yachts calling at Horta each year, surely not a dangerous destination
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Old 19-03-2014, 13:05   #55
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Re: azores 2014 how safe is it?

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There are about a thousand plus yachts calling at Horta each year, surely not a dangerous destination
its not the destination! its getting there in one piece!

mind you there have been a few casualties of crew after a big night at cafe sport! fished one guy out the harbour myself in the past
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Old 19-03-2014, 13:17   #56
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Re: azores 2014 how safe is it?

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Originally Posted by Orchidius View Post
So we've established a fair few points here; the boat must be ready and well equiped, there must be sufficient crew on board and they must be well rested. The supplies have to be well thought through and different sources of water have to be considered. Basic knowledge of tbe weather and a way to consult forecasts should be in place.

There is something missing in the list though, something that is also missed by pretty much all books and guides: experience. A lot of people that are doing this for the first time are really unsure of this aspect. When is one adequately experienced? When one or a couple of offshore passages have been made in experienced company? But then again circumstances might be really different when you're on your own. Sail in experienced company u.til you think you've pretty much seen it all? Not really realistic eh...

On the other side of the spectrum I read a lot of books/blogs and have talked to a fair few people that have embarked on their roundtrip Atlantic with pretty much no experience but a lot of theorethical knowledge, a solid preparation, the aid of a meteorologist and a lot of common sense.

What's your take on this aspect? I would like to make the trip next gear, and am confident about all the above comments, but lack the experience (like many in my marina that entertain such plans).
in my opinion a lot of what we call "experience" is knowing what to expect, knowing how to react,and having the wherewithall to do it,the rest is just stamina,common sense and patience.
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Old 19-03-2014, 13:20   #57
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Re: azores 2014 how safe is it?

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...fished one guy out the harbour myself in the past
Could that guy have been…


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Old 19-03-2014, 13:55   #58
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Re: azores 2014 how safe is it?

no but this might entertain a naughty monkey!
The Islands of Magic - Legends, Folk and Fairy Tales from the Azores

old azorean tale of why dogs sniff!

Once upon a time the dogs gave a dinner party. All the dogs were invited and all the dogs accepted the invitation. There were big dogs and little dogs and middle-sized dogs. There were black dogs and white dogs and brown dogs and gray dogs and yellow dogs and spotted dogs. There were dogs with long tails and dogs with short tails and dogs with no tails at all. There were dogs with little sharp-pointed ears and dogs with big flat drooping ears. There were dogs with long slender noses and dogs with short fat turn-up noses. All these dogs came to the party.

Now the dinner was a most elaborate affair. Everything had been arranged with the utmost care. All the good things to eat were spread out upon the rocks by the sea. A gay sparkling little brook brought water to drink. The sun was shining brightly and a soft gentle little breeze was blowing. Everything seemed absolutely perfect.

But there was a cross fussy old dog who came to the party. She was a yellow dog, they say. Nothing ever suited her. Whenever she went to a party she always found fault with something. Sometimes there was too little to eat and sometimes there was too much. Sometimes the hot things were not hot enough and sometimes the cold things were not cold enough. Sometimes the hot things were so hot they burned her mouth and the cold things so cold that they gave her indigestion. There was always something wrong.

At this party, however, there was not too much to eat and there was not too little to eat. The hot things were all just hot enough and the cold things were all just cold enough. Everything seemed to be exactly as it should be.

"How good everything tastes!" remarked the big black dog between polite mouthfuls.

"Everything is seasoned exactly right," added the black and white spotted dog between mouthfuls which were entirely too large to be polite.

That was an unfortunate remark. The cross fussy yellow dog heard it. She noticed immediately that the big juicy bone she was eating had not been seasoned with pepper.

"Will somebody please pass the pepper?" she asked.

All the black dogs and white dogs and brown dogs and yellow dogs and gray dogs and spotted dogs fell over each other trying to find the pepper to pass. There was not a single bit of pepper at that dinner party.

"I can't eat a mouthful until I have some pepper," whined the yellow dog.

"I'll go into the city and get some pepper," said one of the dogs. Nobody ever knew which dog it was.

The dog who went into the city to get the pepper never came back. Nobody ever knew what became of him.

Whenever two dogs meet they always sniff at each other. If one of them should happen to be the dog who went into the city to get the pepper, he would surely smell of pepper.
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Old 19-03-2014, 14:13   #59
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Re: azores 2014 how safe is it?

oh i LOVE THIS!!
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Old 19-03-2014, 14:28   #60
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Re: azores 2014 how safe is it?

Lovely story, Atoll, of why dogs sniff. Well done, sir.

Ann
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