Piedras Negras to the anchorage at Muros

Dolphins escort Eileen of Avoca

Over the next leg I had a dolphin escort for much of the journey. Rather large dolphins I might add, perhaps it’s all that fertilizer floating in the Rias that’s bred a race of super large and extra cheeky cetaceans. I say extra cheeky because individuals in this pod had developed a new way to amuse themselves by splashing me (without resorting to the blow-hole technique describe in an earlier post).

The trick involves leaping from the water and giving an extra slap of the tail at just the right moment upon reentry to effect an extraordinary large splash . Very sopping amusing…

The ‘Big Brother’ helicopter was at it again today, but it was more interested in a trio of south bound yachts, and only bothered to give me a single flyby.

Approaching the anchorages off Muros, Spain

Approaching Muros, the wind picked up considerably (to its usual two to three times that indicated in the windguru.com forecast). Double reefed, I made excellent time traveling at a brisk 6 knots so I arrived in Muros by mid-afternoon giving me plenty of time to examine its two anchorages.

The one closest the marina (and town) was over (reportedly) foul ground, and at 10 meters, I opted for the shallower eastern side over sand and weed. Here I would have ample scope for my meager 25 meters of anchor chain.

It was a tranquil night and my sleep was only interrupted once when at 5am a crescendo of engine noise, followed by subdued Spanish conversation and culminating in much rattling of my anchor chain, had me frantically reaching for my clothes.

Once suitably attired (yes, I know I have questionable priorities), I ventured on deck to discover a couple of fishermen passing their tiny boat under my anchor chain. Upon seeing me, they explained that they were just getting themselves unstuck from my chain and that there was no need to worry, which I figured was the polite Galician way of saying “you anchored on our fishing net, dimwit”.

Bayona to Piedras Negras Marina, San Vicente del Mar

The beach at Piedras Negras

The mornings downpour was relatively short lived and by early afternoon I made the most of the improved conditions and set out to explore the anchorages off Isla del Faro. I liked the beaches here so much, I went for a swim!

In truth, I managed to collect an unwanted souvenir around Eileens’ propeller and was forced to take a dip to remove the culprit. Otherwise I’d never have ventured into the water, especially after what I’d seen floating in it yesterday!

The anchorages off Isla del Faro are fine for a day-time stopover, but I didn’t feel comfortable remaining there for the night, so, having had my 30 second swim, I set off to investigate what Isla Ons (10 miles further north) had to offer.

Helicopter surveillance in Spanish Rias

On route, I was intercepted by the ‘big brother’ chopper for a photo shoot (see marked white bulbous protrusion in accompanying image).

Your guess is as good as mine as to why the helicopter crew found it necessary to take aerial shots of Eileen, (is she really that pretty?), but not wanting to be outdone, I quickly fetched my own camera and after a brief wave (for good measure), set about starting my own collection of helicopter photos.

The anchorages off Isla Ons were much worse than those I’d visited earlier in the day, leaving me no option but to push on for San Vicente del Mar, just 3 nautical miles to the north.

Sunset in Spanish Galicia

I was treated to a spectacular sunset and arrived at the little marina of Piedras Negras just as the last of the light faded.

If the surge within the marina was anything to go by, I made the right decision not to anchor for the night. At one point I wondered whether the entire pontoon would break loose, but even the jarring, creaking marina cacophony was not up to the task of keeping me from my sleep, and by morning everything had settled.