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_________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ Marcy home Walvis Bay Angling Club club AFASyn Ushuaia Marcy and crew

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Madagascar!

We rounded Cape d'Ambre the north cape of Madagascar in light winds yesterday afternoon. The area is notorious rough spot, so we were grateful to spared getting knocked about. There were whales to greet us and fortunately for us that was all the drama of our trip around the cape. We actually had to motor most of the afternoon and night - an unusual experience for Marcy . The whales were spectacular. The first one was spotted by Peter and it had it's tail in the air. We saw it and wondered what
it could be. It looked like a low sail. white too! We were quite surprised when it sank and then it spouted leaving no doubt what we'd seen. An hour later a mother and baby humpback passed us within a few hundred feet. As we approached they were diving and showing their tails with much flair. When we got close enough for a good photo they got shy, took one last breath and swam on by.
The land we've seen is brown and dry on the west side of the island. The clouds pile up on the east side and the dividing line of green and brown was quite obvious when we were looking directly south down the center of the island. The trees are pure "Africa" and look just like the photos. Sparse, wind swept with just a bit of green. We motored through most of the night and shut the engine off this morning for our radio net. The land breeze we were hoping would blow us the last 14 miles to an
anchorage was very light, but in the flat calm water we were able to average 2 knots over the next few hours. Finally it was time to fire up the engine and get in the last mile to drop the hook. The water is teeming with life, we saw no less than 4 marlins flying through the air and tail hopping about as they hunted bait fish. There was a huge tuna feeding frenzy and turtles to greet us as we prepared to anchor. There are a couple of villages ashore which are barely visible with the naked eye
as the brown huts blend in with the scrub. The water is pristine, the beach white sand and the bird calls from ashore are new and enticing.
The awnings are installed to keep the sun off the decks as the engine cools after all that motoring. Down below in Marcy the thermometer is reading a comfortable 85 degrees this afternoon. This evening the mosquito screens will be deployed and we'll enjoy that delicious first full night of sleep after a not-long, but long-enough passage.

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