Yesterday’s morning overcast burned off about 11am, the winds were light and variable, and the sea flat. It really felt like a southern California day. I sailed along the coastline past Rio, through a large area of hundreds of islands, which is Brazil’s popular cruising grounds. I didn’t stop and anchor, swim or sample the local restaurants like I might have enjoyed, but I did weave through the islands a bit, just to get a look around. Its an interesting mix- the islands are dense and jungley, but there aren’t many beaches, mostly rocky anchorages. The towns seem OK, but not like the Mediterranean with their inviting sidewalk cafes and restaurants. This is also where much of Argentina comes to charter, so it’s interesting to see firsthand.
The night was spent weaving my way back out of the islands, on mostly glossy waters. I’m now back in the regular ocean, working my way west and south, and trying to time the upcoming legs with the ever-changing weather forecasts. There are some potentially tough bits ahead, and getting the right weather is key. But the weather can change dramatically from day to day- literally from the North at 30 knots to South at 30 knots in 24 hours. And of course, the southern extremity of Brazil and northern Uruguay have no anchorages or places to hide for about 250 miles, so I really hope to guess right.
This morning is overcast again, and I hope it burns off like it did yesterday, as the sun is much preferred, especially now that I am leaving the tropics, and entering the temperate zone- where it still winter for another 2 weeks. Based on this mornings readings of grib files and tea leaves, I am going to sail on today, hoping to get into Paranagua tomorrow morning, where I will anchor and wait out some weather. Then Monday I will head out again, hoping to get to Imbituba by Tuesday midday, where I will again anchor and wait out weather for a day or two before the next long leg.
Finally, a big Happy Birthday to my faithful (but sadly missing this time because I am too impatient) crew, good friend, veteran Tradewinds instructor and circumnavigator Marianne Wheeler!
24.18S 46.24W 4422nm gone, 972nm to go. 8am 9/10