Sunday, March 31, 2013

Departure

As I take a final look around this area I call home, there's not many signs of sailing season nor is spring really in the air. Sure, there are buds on some trees, even green grass here and there in the better kept parks but there are plenty of signs of winter as well: stubborn snow banks in the backs of parking lots, plows affixed to pickups bearing landscape company logos, white salt streaks across black sidewalks that have yet to be washed away by April showers. People always say it's the changing of the seasons they most look forward to in New England and that spring is an inspiration as life begins anew but it's still too early for me to draw any of that inspiration before I go. There's no getting around the fact that I'm heading out into the cold, wet, unforgiving north Atlantic alone with little to comfort me except the thrill of the challenge. There is no choice but to rise to it as anything less would spell doom. It's just about time for my first transatlantic.

I'm heading for Port-la-Foret, home base to many of the shorthanded French teams and the famous Pôle Finistère Course au large in nearby Fouesnant. Weather routing indicates a quick downwind passage for the first 1000 miles with at least one very ugly low to tangle with in about 6 days time (see chart below) which is to be expected this time of year. 

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