Mooring up another river

Trip Start Jun 02, 2012
Trip End May 31, 2014

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Flag of Spain  , Andalusia,
Friday, August 3, 2012

From our anchorage up the River Guadiana we left for an anchorage at Rio de las Piedras.  In the Almanac it looked as though the river entry was behind sand dunes.  As we approached the safe water mark according to our plotter we could not find it.  We were nearly ashore (or so it seemed) when we finally spotted the channel markers.  We dropped the sails and turned towards the outer mark being tossed from side to side by the waves and wind as we motored along.

With a constant check on pilotage I helmed while Steve stood lookout.  It was weird because we entered the channel and then proceeded along the beach passing sunbathers and swimmers as we went.  The markers were not easy to spot and it looked as though they actually stopped but then we spotted another a fair distance away.  After that it was keeping in the channel and making our way 2 miles upstream to the anchorage/mooring.  What happens is the sand banks dry out as the tide lowers creating a channel that is about 6m at high water and 2.3m at low water.

We reached what we thought was the anchorage but every other boat was on a mooring buoy so with a couple of attempts we picked up a buoy.  The wind was whistling down the channel and that made it more difficult for us.

While we were settling down Steve heard a slight metallic knocking noise and was up immediately investigating.  The interior was turned upside down within minutes so I turned my attention to cooking us a meal.  It was about 9.30pm by this time.

Steve managed to track the noise down to the prop shaft with a listening stick!  Don't ask!
So the next day's task was to investigate for certain what he thought it was.  We had our meal and settled down for the night.

Next morning we thought we might go over to the beach in Thunderbird 3 and pay our mooring fees and Steve was going to give me a lesson on the outboard, but as usual (for me...I think I'm jinxed)  it started up and then wouldn't get going again. So that idea was cancelled.  As I said before on the blog for Albufeira the locals love speed and once again we were being rocked about every time a motor cruiser went past.  There was a water taxi that took people over to the office/land so Steve managed to hail that and go and pay.  I can't remember clearly, but I think we got a free mooring for 2 nights anyway.

 To do the investigation Steve had to go under the hull to see what might be making the noise.  So out came the wetsuit and photos for this!  He went under the hull and very quickly ascertained that it was the larger shaft anode (sorry I can't explain that one in layman's terms) that was loose and making the clink clink as the prop turned in the tide.
That was a relief to him and it was not an urgent repair so we could leave the mooring for Chipiona the next day and not have to go on the 'hard' to fix it.
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Rosalie on

You sound very cheerful. I'd be having a nervous breakdown every time I heard a noise that might mean further repairs. Steve, you are a genius to be able to investigate and rectify problems. I expect all the beautiful places you're going to and the excitement of the unknown make repairs a minor detail. I thought I'd comment on what's happening in my life but it all seems so boring compared to yours. I will message you, however, hopefully when something less than trivual occurs. I think Jilly you can forget about dressmaking and become a writer; perhaps a book on how to sail! You must be very experienced now in both sailing and writing. It's great reading all about your adventures. Will stop as I want to read your other two entries!! xx

Rosalie on

Oooops! 'trivial'

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