The Boatist

Sailboat Ownership, Translation Work and Tales of Minor Adventure

Retire early, be passionate, don't worry, die poor

Saturday, January 4, 2014

Storms and Marinas

I woke up in the dark to the sound of howling wind and rain pummeling the shutters, just like Windguru had forecast, plus 8.5 m waves.

Ana is visiting her family up north, so I got up right away, had breakfast, fed the cat and drove up to Peniche. I wasn't seriously worried about Jakatar; it's not as though I was expecting the hellish scene that took place in Machico, Madeira Island, a few weeks ago.

Imagine showing up at the marina and finding this. A good time to own a steel boat, I suppose.

When I arrived, the wind was already subsiding and only some waves were timidly leaping over the breakwater. There was nothing to worry about, for now.

I ran the engine engaged in reverse for 10 minutes, dried the bilges, sprayed the hydraulic fittings, the engine and the stern post with WD40 and checked the dock lines. After that I checked on the other sailboats and headed back home to WORK. Needless to say, I haven't done a stitch of work yet as I write this. 

Black water ducks
These guys are drying their feathers on a rainy day.
propane tank compartment
This French boat has a nifty rum keg used as a propane tank compartment.
The next morning I saw some photographs of what happened in late afternoon when the tide rose over 3 m.
waves in Peniche
Jakatar is docked to the left of the screen.

Winter in Peniche
Looks like a simulated waterfall


  1. That wind is NASTY! That video in Machico still has my jaw hanging... still.
    I've got issues with strong wind. I just don't like it and it upsets me when I see it in any form.
    Why would any one buy a boat...let alone build one. Boats are no match to such forces of nature.

    What am I saying??

    1. You're saying what at least 8 people are saying right now in Peniche. Eight, that's how many boats sunk last night.
      The waves you see crashing over the breakwater in the pictures above are nothing - last night huge waves smashed the marina's steel-frame access ramp into a bent wreck and sunk eight small boats closest to the quay.
      A friend of mine and the harbor master were there in the night on RIBS retying boats, etc. Luis called me and told me Jakatar was OK.
      It's morning now, just got back from the marina, but you can't even go near it except by boat and the waves - now a bit smaller - are still rolling over the breakwater.
      Cheers from the wild west.