8 days in the Muros area, we said our farewells to Pam, Pete and Mike as they continued their journey aboard Yacht Renegade to Lisbon in Portugal. we promised to make the effort to meet up again next year if at all possible.
We left the seafood and rock festivals only to be greeted with many more along this Galician coastline and the ‘collective’ Rias Baixas !
……As we uplifted the anchor in Muros bay we had a Sea Cucumber caught in the anchor chain. It had somehow swam ( or is it slithered? ) into one of the chain loops and it was impossible to push it out… Unfortunately the only way to release it was to cut it out and throw overboard. otherwise we would have had a rotting corpse in the chain locker!
We had got to the stage of our trip when we reluctantly needed to be thinking about where we would leave Somoya for the winter months. Our original plan of the Med was far from the mark! That will be next year now!
The next sail took us to the Ria de Arousa. With a name like this we must be in for a treat!
We were now entering a coastline that included an archipelago of islands that have National Park status. They are a chain of islands that protect the Estuaries ( Rias) on this part of the Atlantic coast. In return they are protected by law due to the special ecosystems that are represented. (Coastal and Subaquatic ecosystems) The flora and fauna are abundant, with ‘waters’ of the National Park representing 86% of its total surface area. Since the bronze age the intermittent presence of man has left their mark on the islands. Dependent on fishing, farming or raising lifestock to survive these marginal communities also struggled against piracy and with life on the mainland comparatively easy led to their gradual depopulation. This evokes of similar stories of the Islands around the highland coast of Scotland.
We looked forward to visiting these Islands of Galicia.
Our first port of call in this Ria was to be Pobra de Caraminal. This had been ear marked for a possible over wintering site so we came to check it out.
The town quay was filled with a huge tent housing the next festival! and stages set up for more music! We were fast becoming accustomed to wearing earplugs at night to block out the noise which usually goes on till 5 am! Don’t get me wrong … it is nice to take part and listen with the crowds ….. but there is a limit!!
We met up again with Erik and Mary Omming on board their beautiful Najad 511– Bess Safari Too we enjoyed several ‘sundowners’ and swapped seafaring stories! Their plan was to get to Lagos in Portugal for the winter ‘layup’ so here was the place we said ’cheerio’ to this charming couple. I wonder if we will catch up with them next year. I hope so……
Pobra (as locally known) looks a large town with lots going on. Many restaurants and cafe/bars fill the seafront and the street behind with several supermarkets, fruiterias and panderias (bakers). However there were few interesting shops for a visitor. Good beaches are nearby and of course the Navajas festival and its music kept us entertained (Razor -shell fish….. they were a bit like a fishy chicken!).
We were treated to 2 days of intense activity when a 5 day Regatta in the Rias was brought to our doorstep.
I took some great film of the “manic’ entrance of the racing boats to the marina. The quiet waters in the bay were suddenly filled with racing boats of all sizes taking down their sails before entering the marina for the night. Their first class racing skills were completely obliterated with the lack of any skill mooring up. I have never seen so many boats crashing into each other AND the other unmanned boats sitting unaware in the marina! We were stood ready and armed with fenders and a wary eye to whoever parked next to us! It was quite ashamedly exhilarating to watch!
Staff were friendly here but the showers were few and rather mouldy so crocs were always worn whilst showering! Wifi was only available when in the marina office building (although Chris could get it on his ‘Badboy”) but that was ok as you could have a drink and chat to the visitors passing through.
Here was the place i would say we met the most british people. A couple of ‘Irish ‘ Boats with ‘colourful’ occupants, friendly and funny with a ‘mother-in-law’ on board who wanted to party more than her teenage grandchildren!
Dorf and James on board another Westerly Oceanlord (9 yrs younger) had sailed many years in the warmer climes, so we welcomed a lot of advice and tips from this friendly couple and exchanged drinks, nibbles and life stories aboard.
We thoroughly had a good time here which was as well because the weather had become much poorer with full cloud cover and rain at times. The typical coastal fog was also showing its face again
Before we left this marina we had a visit from a pod of dolphin right alongside (and in the bay) the marina pontoons. We hadn’t seen any since Howard and Chris left us in Bilbao. Another delightful sight! We never bore of the gifts of our natural world.