Is Denia (Alicante) to Ibiza possible?

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Killter
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Is Denia (Alicante) to Ibiza possible?

Post by Killter » Fri Sep 03, 2021 1:51 am

Hi guys.

I'm new here.

It seems my whole life I have wanted to sail, and for the last few years I have been looking at Macgregor boats. I'm finally in a position where I will be able to purchase a second hand one very soon, I hope! I'm 42 and my desire to be on the sea is reaching fever pitch.

Although I am Irish, I live in Alicante. My plan is to learn to sail at the weekends locally off the coast of Alicante and build up as much experience as possible. I have no experience of actual sailing although I have been on many boats and I am an experienced diver and I'm so scared (about learning how to sail, the sea etc and also being on the cusp of realising a life long dream is also daunting!), but I have to , and will, do it.

I have tonnes of questions and doubts, but my main one at the moment is - after a lot of experience locally, is it possible for a Mac to sail from mainland Spain - Denia, to Ibiza in August (I know every August is different, especially on the Med, but I want to clarify that I don't plan to sail in Winter or outside the summer months-not for many years anyway). I have read scathing reviews of the Macs like everyone else here and I know that an Ocean crossing is not for a Mac, but for summer Med sailing, is it suitable? I am keeping in mind that they are designed more for coastal sailing and the Med is considered blue water, and can be quiet rough and changeable in any month. I have travelled the Med a lot and lived here for a good few years.

My idea would be gain experience through sailing and lessons, and spend Augusts around the Baleares islands. One stickler is that I have two young kids, 6 and 9. I want them to know how to sail also. I have a bucket list of things to teach them (or learn with them) and sailing is one of them.

Sorry for the long post lads and thanks for reading.

I have looked around this forum and found it to be a huge source of info. Thank you very much.

Killter

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Re: Is Denia (Alicante) to Ibiza possible?

Post by svscott » Mon Sep 06, 2021 7:29 am

Welcome to the forum and good luck with your boat search.

The Macs get a bad rap but are truly great "little" boats. I live in Northwest Pennsylvania and do 98 percent of my sailing in Lake Erie, I don't know your sailing area whatsoever but my advice should be applicable no matter where in the world you live and sail... So long as you can keep your passages between protected harbors less than 50 to 60 miles per day, and you can reasonably trust the local weather forecast, you can sail Mac just about anywhere. The X or M can reach a bit further in a day due to their ability to motor along more than twice as fast as you can sail. Macs seem to be happiest with wind under 20 knots and waves less than 3 feet tall.

As far as bringing your children along, my 9-1/2 year old son has been sailing on our 26D since before he was 2 years old. Now at 9, he's adept at knowing safety expectations, and what everything is and how it works, but he's not quite big or strong enough to do much of the actual line handling. He's already claimed 3 Hour Tour as his boat when he's old enough to manage it.

The tough part for you is having them aboard while you work through your learning curve. You will make mistakes along the way. If they're mature enough to take and follow your direction and they can handle an occasional stressful situation in stride, everything should be fine.
1987 26D - Three Hour Tour; 1998 26X - to be named

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kurz
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Re: Is Denia (Alicante) to Ibiza possible?

Post by kurz » Tue Sep 07, 2021 2:48 am

we did legs from Korsika to Italien main land (Or all aeolien islands... (great trip) in spring time. So what is already written it depends on the weather and on YOU...

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Re: Is Denia (Alicante) to Ibiza possible?

Post by Killter » Tue Sep 07, 2021 1:05 pm

Thanks guys.

Kurz, I completely agree and understand. My main doubt was if the boat could physically, actually do it.

Thanks Kurz and Svscott.

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Re: Is Denia (Alicante) to Ibiza possible?

Post by NiceAft » Tue Sep 07, 2021 3:57 pm

I'm so scared (about learning how to sail, the sea etc
Don’t be scared about learning how to sail; a healthy respect of the sea is wise.
Ray ~~_/)~~

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Re: Is Denia (Alicante) to Ibiza possible?

Post by Killter » Wed Sep 08, 2021 4:06 am

Thanks for the reply.

The fear is having the kids on board. Im good on the sea and on boats but having the rug rats on board is a different ballgame. But planning, safety drills and safety gear will so the trick.

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Re: Is Denia (Alicante) to Ibiza possible?

Post by NiceAft » Wed Sep 08, 2021 4:44 am

Part of learning how to sail is learning that one needs to check weather and sea conditions before leaving the dock. Also knowing your crew’s ability to be on your craft.

The fear is having the kids on board
Maybe your gut is telling you that you’re not yet ready; make certain your sailing skills are honed before you go on more adventurous trips with your children.

You don’t mention if there is another adult on the boat when the kids are on board?

A smart person knows how to get out of a situation which a wise person would not get into in the first place.
Ray ~~_/)~~

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Re: Is Denia (Alicante) to Ibiza possible?

Post by svscott » Sun Sep 12, 2021 6:15 am

Killter wrote:
Wed Sep 08, 2021 4:06 am
Thanks for the reply.

The fear is having the kids on board. Im good on the sea and on boats but having the rug rats on board is a different ballgame. But planning, safety drills and safety gear will so the trick.

So long as the children are able to follow your instruction and are not too clumsy, they should be ok. My son is a very sight concern when we go out... he's proven himself capable, but my main concerns when taking other people's young kids out sailing are their willingness and ability to follow basic direction. My rules for kids are similar to my expectations of adults... limit moving around the boat while underway as much as possible - especially up and down the companionway (the kids all seem to love standing on the ladder step into the cabin) , always maintain 3 points of contact when moving around the boat, and be generally aware of the running rigging so they don't get tangled in/trip on ropes or unintentionally release the mainsheet. Seasickness is a slight concern with people of all ages until you know their comfort level.

I recently bought a 2nd Mac (1998 26X) and my boy right away called dibs on our older 1987 26D to be his boat when he's old enough. He's thinking at 14 to 16 years old he should be allowed to take it out without me.

Image
1987 26D - Three Hour Tour; 1998 26X - to be named

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Re: Is Denia (Alicante) to Ibiza possible?

Post by Killter » Sun Sep 12, 2021 11:54 pm

Hi guys.

Thanks for the advice guys.

The missus will be with us to help and the kids listen to us. Lots of good advice... Thanks.

Now the main doubt is can a macgregor physically do it. I know weather and my experience is a the main factor, but its a 130km journey, even though the Med is generally calm in August which is my main sailing window (i know it changes a lot here on te Med, but August is normally very calm).

Thanks!

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kurz
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Re: Is Denia (Alicante) to Ibiza possible?

Post by kurz » Mon Sep 13, 2021 2:52 am

yes it can.

When you say you will have a 80miles trip.

You will not do it in single sailiing day. So you need a day/night sailing.

Or you will power motor some hours, the again, you need calm see, later you need wind for sailing...

Don't think too much. Yes you could do the trip.
Get a Mac, learn to sail and later you will see what your plans are.

And: There are many ferries a day I guess. So you if you want to do the trip you could take your Mac by car and trailer and get there...

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Re: Is Denia (Alicante) to Ibiza possible?

Post by NiceAft » Mon Sep 13, 2021 4:16 am

Kurz brings up a good point; 130 km is a long way to sail. From what I see, there is no place to stop for the night.
Image

You should motor from Alicante to Ibiza. If you average 12km/hour (9.6km/hour is optimal fuel consumption), it will take you about 12 hours to get there. Depending on sea conditions, the ride can be mild, or very choppy. Once you get there, you can anchor and sail all you wish.

As has been pointed out, children can safely be part of a trip, but 130 km over open water is serious boating, things can happen. Be certain to carry extra fuel, have a good VHF radio, have all of the crew wear life vest, and have wife practice what she has to do if you fall overboard.
Ray ~~_/)~~

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Re: Is Denia (Alicante) to Ibiza possible?

Post by Be Free » Mon Sep 13, 2021 7:31 am

70 to 80 km under sail is pretty easy to cover in daylight with a steady wind. I've hit 100 km a couple of times under very favorable conditions but I would not plan on 130 km without an alternate anchorage along the way. It's not impossible, but it is very, very unlikely.

Are you planning on sailing up the coast and then over to Ibiza non-stop or working your way up the coast and just making the easterly jump over to Ibiza in one run? That last leg is comparable to a Florida-to-Bahamas run which has been done many times by Macgregors.

The boat is capable of making the trip, just not all in daylight in one day unless you plan to use the outboard a lot.
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Re: Is Denia (Alicante) to Ibiza possible?

Post by NiceAft » Mon Sep 13, 2021 12:34 pm

pretty easy to cover in daylight with a steady wind.
under very favorable condition
I would hope one would not plan a trip based on if you can get a steady wind, or hoping for favorable conditions.

As far as I can see, there is nowhere to anchor on the open water to the island, and I for one would rather just motor over (those Mac’s that went to the Bahama’s motored or motor sailed most of the way), and then sail at leisure.

I am not looking to start something with Be Free, I am just pointing out that what is highlighted is factual, just not the wise choice in this case; an inexperienced captain with a sailing, inexperienced family on board.

Killter, first get some sea legs with your family. Your Mac can certainly make the trip.

This summer my wife and I did a cruise on our Mac of over 611km on the water. The longest legs were approximately 80 km. Because I wanted to get to the different marina’s with time to relax, we motored those laps. We sailed when time allowed for leisure.

P.S. Will you wear a Kilt while sailing :?: If yes, post photos :evil: :D I don’t think even Highlander does that.
Ray ~~_/)~~

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Re: Is Denia (Alicante) to Ibiza possible?

Post by Be Free » Tue Sep 14, 2021 9:30 am

Sorry if I was unclear. My point was that under ideal conditions (which seldom happen) he's still not going to be able to cover that distance in one daylight run. If it can't be done in ideal conditions then it can't be done at all. The trip will have to be broken up into multiple days if he wants to sail the entire way. If it has to be done in one hop then it's going to have to be done under power. NiceAft has already calculated 12 hours at an efficient speed and that sounds reasonable to me. That's "math reasonable" not "planning reasonable". I would not want to listen to the outboard run for 12 hours straight and would not plan a trip that required that much engine time without a backup plan if the engine failed.

To the OP: Is it possible? Yes, if you plan on motoring the whole way or if you break it up into multiple days of sailing. Whatever you plan to do you should also have a backup plan if something goes wrong (and then a backup plan for the backup plan). Have enough fuel to motor to a safe anchorage if you are planning on sailing. Identify safe anchorages along the way you can sail to if you plan on motoring. If it has to be done in one leg then I would not recommend it.

Here's a real world example.

I have a spot about 90km south of me that I like to sail to. I only do that trip when the weather report indicates favorable winds for travel to south and then a return trip north a day (or a few days) later. (Pick a favorable weather window.)

There are two "bail out" spots along the way. If it is not possible to reach my primary destination well before dark I can spend the night a either of these anchorages and decide to proceed or return the following day. (Have one or more alternate anchorages in range in case you can't make your primary destination. Re-assess your plan as conditions change; adjust or abort as necessary.)

We have the added advantage of a (relatively) large outboard and a planing hull on our boats. That means we can bring some serious speed to bear if necessary. I carry enough fuel to reach the most distant part of my voyage at full throttle with 2/3 of my fuel remaining. When I've used 1/3 of my fuel it's time to start getting closer to home or find more fuel. (Plan on using 1/3 of your fuel going out, 1/3 coming back, and 1/3 in reserve. Calculate based on your worst fuel economy.)

This part of the Florida coast is relatively shallow several miles from shore. I also have the option of anchoring out in open water if none of the preferred "bail out" spots are reachable. It's definitely not my first choice but I have done it. (Have a backup plan for your backup plan.)

Plan A: Sail to my destination.
Plan B: Divert to a predetermined safe destination if conditions make Plan A unreasonable.
Plan C: Run to a predetermined safe destination as fast as my outboard will get me there.
Plan D: Get to a safe (but not as comfortable) spot.

I've heard it said that "the most dangerous thing on a sailboat is a schedule". I "agree in part and dissent in part" as our justices are wont to say. A schedule is an important part of trip planning. If you run the numbers and see that you can't possibly make a particular destination with the resources you have available then a prudent sailor would not attempt it. The problem comes later when your initial calculations said you could do it but conditions on the ground now say it's not actually possible. Plans B-D require changing the schedule. If you did not have a schedule you would not know when or if you need to change it. Sticking to the original schedule in spite of actual conditions is what makes it dangerous.
Bill
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Re: Is Denia (Alicante) to Ibiza possible?

Post by Killter » Tue Sep 14, 2021 11:45 am

Thank you guys.

I would be more than happy to motor across and put up the sails when /if possible (there's often no wind in this area in August). I am in no hurry with the passage as I will have 4 or 5 weeks free when I get to the islands. So if it takes a little longer and everyone is safe, its no problem. Having learnt to scuba dive in the Irish Atlantic ocean in Winter, I am decent enough with water safety, and also having worked in severly hazardous work on land, I am aware of the need for safety. I will be going nuts with safety and practice drills etc.

I'll be getting as much sailing in before August, and if we aren't ready, we can wait until the following August.

Thank you kindly guys.

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