After clearing out, Exodus set out to catch the afternoon winds to our last sotavento (leeward) island, Ilha de Fogo. She started out slowly, picking up more wind as she got further. As soon as the wind was gusting over 17 knots, Peter really got in his element. Riding the waves with fiery eyes, clearly enjoying himself.
We approached Ilha de Fogo in the dark, with the massive volcano looming in the background. Pico do Fogo is the largest active volcano in the region. She erupted as recent as 2014. She comes up from 8 kilometres below on the ocean floor. Her large crater (or caldera, like in cauldron full of boiling fuming lava) measures 8 kilometres in diameter, with a rim of 1 600 metres altitude and an interior cone that rises to 2 800 metres above sea level.
Trying to find the anchorage was a tad confusing as we were looking for the port lights, which were not functioning. We could only see something that looked like a completely lit up apartment block. Only when we got closer, the contours of a big cargo ship could be discerned. The vessel was moored up in the small port, filling any available spot, and had all her lights on.
Ilha de Fogo was Exodus’s last stop before the Atlantic crossing, the last chance to stretch our legs on lands and be close to land. We enjoyed snorkeling and swimming around the boat, admiring the green island, doing the last washing, and went for a stroll on the island. Here are some of the views.
Exodus lifted anchor at 11.30 the next morning, ready for the crossing of 2114 sea miles. This would take anything between 17 and 22 days. The weather forecast predicted low winds in our first week, picking up as we moved further away from land.
With giant Fogo slowly getting smaller and smaller we said our goodbyes to Cabo Verde, thankful for the beautiful sights, the great dives and wonderful times. In our opinion, really worth a visit for those travelers who like to go off the beaten track, and enjoy a rugged beautiful little populated area. On our way out we soaked up the last bits of landmass sailing past Brava and an islet that looked like a rhinoceros bathing in the water on the approach and like a fat hippo when passing by.
Exodus would be sailing southwest on the trade winds until the butter melts…