Merron Merron on the Quebec-St Malo

Merron Merron on the Quebec-St Malo

Saturday July 28 2012 Author: Miranda Merron Location: none selected

Huge apologies for the lack of news - have been working harder than I ever thought possible.

Since we left Quebec on Sunday morning, we have been rather busy. Sunday was a beautiful day for racing downwind on the St Lawrence, with the wind reaching 28 knots at one stage, making manoeuvring more exciting, but flat water and fast. Plus there are numerous obstacles such as islands, sand banks and other competitors.

I have no idea how many gybes we did on the first day alone, but it must have been over 50. Then light and variable the first night and next day, strong breeze filling in on the second night accompanied by menacing thunderstorm, huge gusts off the hills, which made for an interesting mark rounding at St Anne des Monts in the company of
other boats, speeding along in the dark, a bit too much wind.

The race so far has been an endless round of changing sails, getting things right, getting them wrong, giving away places, getting back in the hunt, catching up with some of our competition, getting ahead of some, getting becalmed again, sometimes clear with good visibility, more recently fog, heavy glacial rain, more fog, then clear starlit night and proper downwind surfing conditions.

Amazingly, we had good visibility on the St Laurence, and the Bay of Gaspe and the Roche Percee, lit up with end-of-world sunlight as huge dark cloud came rolling in. Beautiful part of the world. However we saw nothing of Newfoundland, and just a glimpse of the lower cliffs on Miquelon.

We are now over the Grand Banks of Newfoundland (and it isn't foggy, in fact it is glorious weather, and the boat and its occupants are thoroughly enjoying drying out a bit). This is the start of the Atlantic Ocean section of the Quebec St Malo race, the final 2000 mile sprint to France. Spinnaker up, flying along, waiting for the next low pressure system to catch up, with more wind and no doubt rain!

Campagne de France - western North Atlantic Ocean

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