After a fantastic surfing trip with the family on Spains north coast I arrived in Valencia on the 10th of October to sail the new RG650 to barcelona ready for the 2012 Barcelona Mini 650 race. I was hoping to remain on the North coast until the 12th, however looking at the weather files on previous days it warned of strong winds after the 12th, so we jumped in our fiat 500 and raced towards Valencia.
We arrived in Valencia at 1000 the next morning and I immediately began preps for the delivery. My sister Gina was going to join me for the 150nm passage from Valencia to Barcelona, and it was predicted that we would have light to moderate reaching winds. As it turns out, weather forecasts are not always accurate (surprise surprise) and what we experienced could only be described as a washing machine type chop mixed with winds ranging from 0 to 27kts.
The passage started as predicted, and we had some fantastic winds and a beautiful sunset on the first night. The next day we were stuck in various wind hole for a large percentage of the day, with winds going around the clock multiple times. Night time finally came, and the wind picked up a bit, from the South west and so the kite went up, half an hour later the kite was down and we were stuck in another wind hole, and so the process repeated itself for the next 24 hours. Kite up, kite down, jib up, jib down, slap slap slap go the sails, wind builds, kite up and so on.
In the early hours of this morning I awoke to Gina sneaking the kite up, the wind had filled in as a light 10 kts, and from 110 TWA. Since we had been drifting for the previous 12 hours, I decided to join her on deck. Half an hour later large clouds began to build behind us, and before too long we had 20 then 22kts. The RG650 was screaming along, averaging 11kts as we raced down wind, surfing the waves and having a blast, then it started gusting, and the fun was over, and the big kite was replaced with a code 5 for a bit of easier handling. Still we were cranking along at 10-12kts as we surfed down the Mediterranean chop.
Up and down went the wind for the rest of the passage, as did the spinnakers. We finally arrived in Barcelona just after mid day after drifting around only 10nm from the marina for a good part of the morning.
For the next few days I will be getting the RG650 into fighting mode and ready for the start of the Barcelona race. There is not much to do, so hopefully a bit of training will be in order once the weather decides to stabilise a bit.